Australasia's Biggest Online Store

Shop over a million Toys in our Huge New Range

Secondhand World


Product Description
Product Details

About the Author

Katherine Min was born in Champaign, Illinois, and was raised in Charlottesville, Virginia, and Schenectady, New York. She attended Amherst College and the Columbia School of Journalism. She worked as a journalist in Boston; Seoul, Korea; Virginia and New Hampshire. Min is currently a professor of creative writing at Plymouth State University. She lives in Plymouth, New Hampshire.


Min's first novel opens by introducing readers to 18-year-old Isadora Myung Hee Sohn, known as Isa to her mother and friends and Myung Hee to her father. Isa tells the absorbing story of a young woman's struggle to overcome the obstacles of growing up Korean American in Albany, NY, during the 1970s. True to that stereotypically liberated period, Isa gets involved with sex, drugs, and rock'n'roll. Hooking up with albino boyfriend Hero and best friend Rachel, she even manages to run away from home for a brief time. The threesome's experimentation eventually transforms each of them and ultimately wrecks their friendship. What seems like a typical teen angst story actually goes far deeper, as Min's strong writing skills expose the secrets-the tragic death of her younger brother and its impact on her parents, for instance-that come to shape Isa's character. Touching and bittersweet, this novel is filled with universal themes presented through Isa's eyes and should resonate with teen readers of both today and yesterday. Recommended for most public libraries.-Shirley N. Quan, Orange Cty. P.L., Santa Ana, CA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Isolation pervades Min's haunting debut, a depiction of a tragedy-beset Korean-American family living in upstate New York during the aftermath of the Korean War. As the book opens, Isadora (Isa) Myung Hee Sohn, 18, has just spent 95 days on a pediatric burn unit in Albany, N.Y., following a fire that destroyed her house and killed her parents. The backstory, a swirling, textured and beautifully detailed web of perception that records a divided life, comprises the rest of the novel. Isa's mother is a beauty from a wealthy family in Seoul; her father is a former South Korean soldier, now a rigid science professor. Brother Stephen died in an accident as a toddler; her parents' extreme grief and subsequent neglect leave Isa herself feeling "insubstantial, a transparency that hung like a scrim between them and the child they had lost." The teenage Isa, angst-ridden, disaffected and subject to racial prejudice at school escapes into the arms of an albino outsider named "Hero" in a sequence that doesn't fit. But when Isa finds out that her mother is having an affair, her ensuing actions destroy her parents' carefully constructed semblance of happily married life. The plot lurches and meanders, but Min's rendering of an outsider family's tight-knit alienation is spot-on. (Oct.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Adult/High School-Isadora Myung Hee Sohn, known as Isa, is caught between two cultures. Her Korean-born parents, who have achieved a measure of success in the United States, disagree on what to call her when she is born. Her mother, an aspiring dancer, wishes to name her after Isadora Duncan. Her father insists that she retain the vestiges of her heritage. She embraces American life, but resists her mother's urgings to get an eyelid operation popular with Asian women. When her younger brother is killed in a freak accident, she struggles with the sense that her traditional parents value their dead son more than their living daughter. Isa falls in love with Hero, an albino boy at her high school, and realizes that she is attracted to him because he, too, is different. He introduces her to sex and convinces her to travel with him to California. But, when Isa suspects her mother of being involved with another man, she finds herself bound by the norms of her culture. In her fury, she determines to reveal the affair, with disastrous results. Only later does Isa understand how everyone is bound by those who precede them. Min poignantly captures the dilemma of second-generation Americans as they try to find a place in their universe, but she also tells of a quest for self-discovery, which is universal.-Pat Bangs, Fairfax County Public Library, VA Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

"Told in achingly evocative prose that lingers in your consciousness. . . . Raw, emotionally urgent and peppered with acute detail." --Los Angeles Times"Engaging both history and the needs of the passionate self, Secondhand World reveals an exquisite and powerful imagination." --The Providence Journal"Leaves the reader breathless with questions about one's own capacity to forgive." --Ms."Katherine Min gives such celebrated writers as Louise Erdrich, Zadie Smith and Amy Tan a run for their money. Exquisitely written, wrenchingly imagined, Secondhand World will stand your hair on end." --The Buffalo News

Ask a Question About this Product More...
Write your question below:
Look for similar items by category
How Fishpond Works
Fishpond works with suppliers all over the world to bring you a huge selection of products, really great prices, and delivery included on over 25 million products that we sell. We do our best every day to make Fishpond an awesome place for customers to shop and get what they want — all at the best prices online.
Webmasters, Bloggers & Website Owners
You can earn a 5% commission by selling Secondhand World on your website. It's easy to get started - we will give you example code. After you're set-up, your website can earn you money while you work, play or even sleep! You should start right now!
Authors / Publishers
Are you the Author or Publisher of a book? Or the manufacturer of one of the millions of products that we sell. You can improve sales and grow your revenue by submitting additional information on this title. The better the information we have about a product, the more we will sell!
Item ships from and is sold by, Inc.
Back to top