Tag Archives: Marriage

Review: Please Look After Mom

Please Look After Mom

Please Look After Mom
By Kyung-Sook Shin
Vintage, Paperback, 9780307739513, April 2012, 272pp.

The Short of It:

The sacrifices that a mother makes for her children and husband are not fully realized until she goes missing.

The Rest of It:

Sometimes you read a book and it stays with you for a very long time. Please Look After Mom is one such book.

Sixty-nine year old So-nyo is with her husband at a Seoul rail station when they become separated from each other. Suddenly, days have passed and she has not been found. As the family gathers to post flyers, each of them find themselves questioning the life she’s lived and the sacrifices she’s made. As their search continues and the days pass without any news, they discover things about their mother that they never knew and it dawns on them that the severe headaches she complained of and the lapses in memory were perhaps more serious than she let on.

This book hit me hard. As a daughter, I just kept thinking of my own mom who passed away late last year and how so many things were left unsaid between us. Mental illness and addiction took center stage and I was left to dream about a mother I could never have. But then you look at this book from a mother’s perspective and you can certainly see why she did the things that she did. I’m telling you, this book grabbed me from all directions and it nearly caused me to “ugly cry” and that’s saying a lot.

Parts of the story are told using a second person point of view which always throws me off. Once I got used to it and how it was used to tell the story, it just felt right for the author to share the story that way. There’s an intimacy to it that leaves you feeling a little uncomfortable, which in this case wasn’t necessarily a bad feeling. It just really got me thinking about mothers, children, marriage and everything in between.

I can’t even adequately tell you how this book made me feel because it affected me on so many levels but it was a really good read and very different from what I’ve been reading lately. I’m so glad my book club chose it for our May meeting. Looking forward to the discussion.

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.

Review: A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove

A Man Called Ove
By Fredrik Backman
Washington Square Press, Paperback, 9781476738024, May 2015, 368pp.

The Short of It:

A grieving man touches the hearts of many in this sweet story.

The Rest of It:

After the death of his wife, Ove is no easier to get along with than he was before her death. He’s particular about how things are done and whether they are done right. He’s gruff, lacks patience and is easily frustrated by stupidity. Especially that of his neighbors. But there is a sadness to Ove and that is what makes this story very special.

This book was very popular when it came out and due to the movie release it’s still popular today and I can see why. It’s definitely a “feel good” read. It’s charming and Ove is quite the character and one you will probably remember for a very long time. But this book is made even better by its cast of supporting characters. They all had a purpose, even the cat.

My book club will be discussing it this Thursday. It reminded me quite a bit of The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry but I think that one had more to discuss. We shall see, but as a “feel good” read, I highly recommend it.

Source: Borrowed
Disclosure: This post contains Indiebound affiliate links.