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Korea

Five Best Book Cafes around East Asia

I like nothing better than sitting in a cafe with a book, and one of the first things I do in a new city is scope out the best and most unique cafes to visit. From quirky to stylish, snug to spacious, I love them all. Here are a few special ones I’ve found so far on my travels. Tranquil Books, Hanoi This is a fantastic little place in Hanoi. Towards the end of...

How China Got Me Interested in North Korea

Living in China started my North Korea fascination. The title of this article may lead you to believe that I hold fascist sympathies and have perfected my goose step, but that’s certainly not the case. What has developed in me, however, is a morbid fascination with the ‘communist’ leaders in Asia, which is certainly something that I didn’t possess when I moved to...

The White Book: Where Empty Space Comes Alive

  Calling it The White Book feels reductive, almost wrong on purpose. Because The White Book is less a book and more an embracing feeling of familiarity. This book is something you live and feel, and all of this is created by its use of empty space. Han Kang has created a story unlike any I’ve read, but beyond being a story it is very much an exploration of the...

The Hole: Korean Horror at its Most Unsettling

Written by Pyun Hye Young, translated by Sora Kim-Russell. Blurbs are a tricky thing to get right. We shouldn’t have to stomach blurbs which give too much away. Sometimes having no blurb at all can serve a book very well. The blurb for the translated edition of The Hole is, thankfully, vague. It cites two comparisons: Alfred Hitchcock and Stephen King, both of...