BE's Reading Desk

Books written by Korean and Japanese Authors: A Recommendation

Both Korean and Japanese authors have cemented their place alongside well-known Western authors when it comes to writing novels and the like. Rich, thought-provoking prose crafted by the hands of Japanese authors and the frequent bend and break of various genres by Korean authors, are mesmerizing to say the least. Here are 2 Korean books and 2 Japanese books to read to view the world through their lens.

Recommended Books written by Korean Authors

  1. Pachinko by Min Jin Lee 

Enveloped in love, resilience, belonging, and self-identity, Pachinko is the story of four generations of a Korean family that is set in Korea and Japan spanning from 1910 to 1989. Told from the point of view of multifaceted characters, who survive and blossom through various arcs of history, racism, discrimination, and injustice.

  1. Cursed Bunny by Bora Chung (Translated by Anton Hur)

An eccentric bunch of short stories written in an absurdist and surrealistic tone, Cursed Bunny by Bora Chung depicts the cruelties of the modern world by the embodiment of ‘monsters’ that haunt our protagonists, for their mischief and disasters of their own making. 

Recommended Books written by Japanese Authors

  1. The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle by Haruki Murakami (Translated by Jay Rubin)

Compelling, captivating, and capricious: The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle is a novel starting with a young man named Toru, who is looking for his wife’s missing cat. While the premise may seem simple, it is not, as we uncover more of Toru’s tumultuous marriage, his wife’s displeasure, and the oddball characters that are either his ally or his foe.

  1. Convenience Store Woman by Sayaka Murata (Translated by Ginny Tapley Takemori)

A delightful story that begins with our 36-year-old eccentric heroine Keiko, who has worked in a convenience store from the age of eighteen. Unable to fit in, neither in her family nor in school, she was able to find her purpose in the convenience store where she does her best to appear ‘normal’ to others. Unfortunately, her happiness does not last for long as people close to her start pressuring her to get a husband and proper career, which prompts her to take desperate actions. 

Fariba Mir

Fariba Mir is a contributor in the writing and admin unit at BRACU Express. She is a Sophmore majoring in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at BRAC University. She enjoys reading books and mangas then ponder about them for weeks, watch animes and movies that engulfs her imagination, and draws whenever her inspiration strikes. She can stare at the wall like a champ. Reach her at

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