The Other Side of Dark Remembrance, short review

Saturday, April 30, 2011 § 0

The Other Side of Dark Remembrance is a novella by Lee Kyun-Young, about a businessman who wakes up hungover and disoriented, in a place he doesn't recognize. As he tries to piece together what happened the night before, he begins to remember a bit more than he had bargained for.

There is a more in-depth review here, and you can buy the book on Amazon here.

I found the book very moving, and the scenes of the boy with [SPOILER] made me tear up. It's said out of desperation, by someone who genuinely and absolutely means it, in one of the most painful ways possible.

If you're left all alone in this wide world, you cannot go on living because loneliness is so painful. Hold each other's hands. You should not part from each other even if you have to die. Go on living, the two of you, holding each other's hands.

There were some elements that I didn't like, but I feel that there would be no point in listing them? The story feels more like a memoir or personal history than packaged fiction, and after a certain threshold of how much realism one intends to convey to the audience (which I apparently think this work has crossed even if it's not auto/biographical), I think I can't and shouldn't write around what the people I knew really were like. Even if it's not how I would have wanted them to be, and they're not who I wish I would have been. I might as well read someone's diary and critique the characterizations. And in the end I think it took an amazingly deft touch to make the work what it is.

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