Monday, July 30, 2012

The Color of Heaven (Colors Trilogy: Book 3)

by Kim Dong Hwa, 310 pages

Ehwa grows into a confident, strong-willed young woman as her mother passes into a new stage in her own life.

I recommend reading all three volumes of this quietly beautiful series to appreciate the author's nostalgic, lyrical depiction of childhood's transformation into adulthood.  His imagined rural Korea may be a bit rosier than the real thing, but he doesn't shy away from some of the hardships of the time.  Characters like Ehwa's mother, an ill-fated retainer, and Ehwa's childhood friends all show how class and gender and marital status all had an effect on a person's daily struggles and future prospects.  Ehwa's growing understanding of her mother's and others' positions helps her to better understand her own and make sound judgments as she moves forward.

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