Publication Date: 03/02/2022 ISBN: 9780861543229 Category:

Beasts of a Little Land

Juhea Kim

Publisher: Oneworld Publications
Publication Date: 03/02/2022 ISBN: 9780861543229 Category:




‘Beasts of a Little Land is a stunning achievement’ TLS

‘Spectacular’ Lisa See, author of The Island of Sea Women

‘I loved it’ Brandon Hobson, author of The Removed

‘Unforgettable’ Nguyen Phan Que Mai, author of The Mountains Sing

An epic story of love and war, set during the turbulent decades of Korea’s fight for independence

It is 1917, and Korea is under Japanese occupation; the country is yet to be divided into north and south. With the threat of famine looming, a young girl named Jade is sold by her family to Miss Silver’s courtesan school in cosmopolitan Pyongyang, an act of desperation that will cement her place in the lowest social class. But the city’s days as a haven are numbered.

Jade flees to Seoul where she forms a deep friendship with an orphan boy called JungHo, who scrapes together a living begging on the streets. As Jade becomes a sought-after performer with unexpected romantic prospects, JungHo is swept up in the revolutionary fight for independence. Soon, Jade must decide between following her own ambitions or risking everyone for the one she loves.

From the perfumed chambers of the courtesan school to the glamorous cafes of a modernising Seoul, the unforgettable characters of Beasts of a Little Land unveil a world where friends become enemies and enemies become saviours, where heroes are persecuted and beasts take many shapes.

Publisher Review

'Beasts of a Little Land is a stunning achievement. Juhea Kim wrestles with the chaos of a half-century of love, idealism, war and violence, and does so with courage and wisdom.' -- TLS 'Full of Korean myth and historical detail, it's an immersive read for a long weekend.' -- Stylist 'This is historical fiction at its very best! I am astonished by Juhea's talent.' -- Nguyen Phan Que Mai, internationally bestselling author of The Mountains Sing 'Stunning... Profound... This novel will devastate you and then still you with its wise meditations on love and loss. I couldn't put it down.' -- Alexis Schaitkin, author of Saint X 'Juhea Kim's sweeping debut is pure reading pleasure. Rapturous, ravishing, and gorgeously rendered, Beasts of a Little Land is a portal to a whole world teeming with life, so full of wonders I wanted it never to end.' -- Catherine Chung, author of The Tenth Muse 'Beasts of a Little Land is a heartbreaking story rendered mythic by Kim's gorgeous prose.' -- Jing-Jing Lee, author of How We Disappeared 'A magnificent, mesmerizing story of love and war... Cinematic in its scope, this is the type of novel that the reader finishes both with pleasure (for its satisfying denouement and pleasing circularity) and with sadness (at having to leave the story behind).' -- New Internationalist 'Some people say that all stories are about either love or war. Set against the backdrop of early 20th-century Korea, Kim's epic debut novel is about both.' -- Harper's Bazaar US, 'Best Books of 2021' 'Covering most of the twentieth century across the Korean peninsula, Kim's debut novel wondrously reveals broken families and surprising alliances created by uncontrollable circumstances. Kim creates multiple narrative prongs, effortlessly navigating overlaps and disconnects... Richly alluring and significant.' -- Booklist (starred review) 'Gorgeous prose and unforgettable characters combine to make a literary masterpiece.' -- Kirkus, (starred review) 'Kim's dreamy, intense debut is both a sure-footed historical account of the Korean struggle for independence from Japan and the emotionally fraught story of several people whose lives are inextricably tied together... The prose is ravishing.' -- Publishers Weekly 'Elegant and wise, lush and immersive, Beasts of a Little Land is Tolstoyan in its sweep and ambition as it brings to life the Korean struggle against Japanese occupation and the making of a modern nation in the first half of the 20th century. Juhea Kim is a conjurer of rare ability whose magnificent debut utterly enchants.' -- Keija Parssinen, author of The Unraveling of Mercy Louis 'In Beasts of a Little Land, Juhea Kim has taken the concept of inyeon - human thread - to weave a beautiful story in which human connections and encounters are preordained. She explores the ideas of fate, fortune, and destiny against the backdrop of the great turbulence and historic events that transpired on the Korean peninsula during the twentieth century. A spectacular debut filled with great characters and heart.' -- Lisa See, author of The Island of Sea Women 'You wouldn't know from reading it that Beasts of a Little Land is Kim's debut novel. There is no shortage of ambition on display here, and fleet-footed narrative pacing to match it... A book written with warmth [and] wisdom.' -- USA Today 'Beasts of a Little Land is an emotional, raw, and moving novel about friendship and the struggle for Korean independence. It is a novel unlike anything I've read. Most importantly, though, it is a novel about love. Juhea Kim writes beautifully in a way that makes it difficult to put this novel down. I loved it.' -- Brandon Hobson, National Book Award finalist and author of The Removed 'An immersive historical novel set in occupied Korea with a sweeping cast of characters whose lives intersect over half a century.' -- Lit Hub, 'Most Anticipated Books of 2021' 'Jade is a courtesan, sold into the trade by her family when starvation is the only other option for her. JungHo is a beggar on the streets of Seoul. Together, they are the compelling protagonists of an exciting debut that takes us through a vast arc of 20th-century Korean history, lending an achingly human lens to sweeping historic events that still reverberate today.' -- Globe & Mail 'Juhea Kim's ambitious debut novel is an epic saga spanning fifty years of Korean history... It's a potent and immersive reading experience, alive to the particulars of its place and time. Intimate but politically resonant, it's perfect for fans of Min Jin Lee and Isabelle Allende.' -- Chicago Review of Books 'Gorgeous... This transporting and elegant tale of complicated characters whose lives intertwine during the Korean independence movement of the early Twentieth Century is not to be missed... Kim's vivid and precise descriptions of place glow.' -- Departures Magazine

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