The Picture Bride

Macmillan Audio. Oct. 2022. tr. from Korean by An Seonjae. 9:53 hrs. ISBN 9781250870827. $26.99. F
Korean author Lee’s first novel to be translated into English is now available in audio, narrated by Korean American actress Joy Osmanski. The audio takes listeners from Japanese-occupied Korea to the American territory of Hawai‘i during the 1920s. In her late teens, Willow and her friends leave their Korean village for Hawai‘i, to start their lives as picture brides. Willow soon learns that, unlike her fellow brides’ mates, her new husband is as handsome and young as his photograph had shown; however, the security and education she craves is still beyond her reach. Unable to escape the far reach of the Japanese control of her homeland, Willow is faced with supporting her family and finding her place just as her husband leaves to fight for Korean independence. With the mellifluous tones of shakuhachi music setting the story, listeners are taken to a time and place far from the current era. Aurally illustrating the young bride’s quietly independent nature, Osmanski’s performance draws listeners into Willow’s story. Her lightly accented voice denotes the characters’ countries of origin without caricaturing their voices.
VERDICT This sensitive production will transport listeners into the past. Share with fans of Min Jin Lee and Lisa See.
Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.



We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing