Pachinko by Min Jin Lee

Hey there, fellow maniacs! Hope ya’ll are having an amazing weekend 🙂

For the past one and a half weeks, I’ve been stuck to this book titled “Pachinko” written by Min Jin Lee. It’s a historical fiction, which is not really my go-to genre. The book was so vivid, trust me, I have considered changing my mind and reading such books as much as I can!

Pachinko is a story that builds on the plight of Korean immigrants living in Japan between 1910 and today. The story stretches to four generations of an ethnic Korean family. The main character is Sunja, a young girl who, due to various circumstances, marries a local pastor (Baek Isak) and begins a new life in Osaka’s impoverished Korean neighborhood. Being an immigrant, the series of problems that continues to affect generations together is what the book is about.

The book begins with the readers getting acquainted to Hoonie, a man born with a cleft palate and a twisted foot, who is married to Yangjin. Despite the age difference of about 13 years, a mutual respect and affection builds between them, not least because of their shared love for daughter Sunja.

Remember the character Sunja, because she takes the story forward. Sunja is cheated by Koh Hansu, a mobster, which brings a fear of disgrace to her, until a sympathetic local pastor offers her a chance to escape by marrying him and immigrating together to his brother’s house in an ethnic Korean neighborhood in Osaka.

Little did they know what the future had in hold for them. The rest of the story is about how the future generations of this fam will break the chains that are holding them. Wait, will they?

Read to find out!

Highlights of the book:

The most amazing part about the book was the morals that the story is built on. Despite all the hardships, the characters accept and wrestle with whatever is thrown at them. The book very clearly depicted the struggles for survival and peace. It seems nearly impossible for the characters to stay happy. The love that each character had for each other was intense. The outrageous degrees of hardship, disrespect and inhumanity suffered by the Koreans makes for it throbbing to read. Every character had a story, and each story was equally significant.

Quote that I like:

“Life makes you pay…everybody pays something”

Min jin lee, pachinko

Some pay in the form of loved ones. Some pay in the form of time. But at the end of the day, everybody pays something.

Overall opinion: The connection the book forms is intense. It’s a pretty long book but is worth a read. I would give it a 4.2/5.

Until my next review, ciao!


3 thoughts on “PACHINKO-A REVIEW

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