Mid-Sentence | If You Leave Me: Crystal Hana Kim with Alexander Chee
Where: New York Public Library—Mid-Manhattan Library
476 Fifth Ave. (42nd St. Entrance)
212-340-0863 Price: Free
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Love, war, and refugee life at the dawn of modern Korea.
In her debut novel If You Leave Me, Crystal Hana Kim traces the birth of modern Korea through the story of three characters inextricably bound by war and society.
When the communist-backed army from the north invades her home, sixteen-year-old Haemi Lee, along with her widowed mother and ailing brother, is forced to flee to a refugee camp along the coast. For a few hours each night, she escapes her family’s makeshift home with her childhood friend, Kyunghwan.
Focused on finishing school, Kyunghwan doesn’t realize his older and wealthier cousin, Jisoo, has his sights set on Haemi—and is determined to marry her before joining the fight. But as Haemi becomes a wife, then a mother, her decision to forsake the boy she always loved for the security of her family sets off a chain of events that will echo for generations to come.
Kim will discuss her debut with Alexander Chee, award-winning author of multiple books, including the recent essay collection How to Write an Autobiographical Novel.
Mid-Sentence presents a series of conversations with groundbreaking literary voices. Indie authors and cult favorites explore the intersections between literature and lived experience.