Read from October 18, 2021 to October 20, 2021.
Hardcover, 160 pages.
An 8 Sentence Review:
Following my love of The Vegetarian and Human Acts, The White Book is more of a poem than a novel.
The entirety of the book revolves around the colour white as the narrator reflects on the death of a sister she never got to meet.
“…a face as white as a crescent-moon rice cake.”
Each chapter of this short book is named after something white as white is a reference to death within the Korean culture. The writing style is delicate and remiss of the violence that haunts Kang’s other works and while I enjoy many of the harsh aspects of Kang’s work, this was a welcome change. This novel reminds me of one of my favourite poetry collections, Victoria Chang’s Obit as it carries a similar haunting but delicate tone.
A short and recommended read for lovers of Kang’s work and a welcome piece on death and grieving.