The Vegetarian : A Novel
by Han Kang, Deborah Smith
Editor: GRANTA BOOKS
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Hye-Yeong and her husband are ordinary people.He is a clerical employee with moderate ambitions and gentle manners; she is a banal but obedient wife.The acceptable flatline of their marriage is interrupted when Yeong-hye, looking for a more “plant-like” existence, decides to become vegetarian, you are invited by grotesque recurrent nightmares.In South Korea, where vegetarianism is almost unheard-of and societal mores are strictly respected, hye-Yeong’s decision is a barbaric act of subversion.Her passive rebellion manifests itself in increasingly bizarre and frightening forms, leading to her bland husband justifying acts of sexual sadism.His cruelties lead him to suicide attempt and hospitalization.She unknowingly captivates her sister’s husband, a videographer.She becomes the center of her increasingly erotic and deranged works, while spiraling further and further into her fantasies of abandoning her fleshly prison and becoming – incredibly, ecstasy – a tree.Heavy, troubling and handsome, the vegetarian is a novel about modern times in South Korea, but also a novel about shame, desire and our vacillating attempts to understand others, from one body imprisoned to the other.
Han Kang, Deborah Smith – The Vegetarian : A Novel – Free
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