The Surrendered

Front Cover
Penguin, Mar 9, 2010 - Fiction - 496 pages
32 Reviews
Read an essay by Chang-rae Lee here.

The bestselling, award-winning writer of Native Speaker, A Gesture Life, and Aloft returns with his biggest, most ambitious novel yet: a spellbinding story of how love and war echo through an entire lifetime.

With his three critically acclaimed novels, Chang-rae Lee has established himself as one of the most talented writers of contemporary literary fiction. Now, with The Surrendered, Lee has created a book that amplifies everything we've seen in his previous works, and reads like nothing else. It is a brilliant, haunting, heartbreaking story about how love and war inalterably change the lives of those they touch.

June Han was only a girl when the Korean War left her orphaned; Hector Brennan was a young GI who fled the petty tragedies of his small town to serve his country. When the war ended, their lives collided at a Korean orphanage where they vied for the attentions of Sylvie Tanner, the beautiful yet deeply damaged missionary wife whose elusive love seemed to transform everything. Thirty years later and on the other side of the world, June and Hector are reunited in a plot that will force them to come to terms with the mysterious secrets of their past, and the shocking acts of love and violence that bind them together.

As Lee unfurls the stunning story of June, Hector, and Sylvie, he weaves a profound meditation on the nature of heroism and sacrifice, the power of love, and the possibilities for mercy, salvation, and surrendering oneself to another. Combining the complex themes of identity and belonging of Native Speaker and A Gesture Life with the broad range, energy, and pure storytelling gifts of Aloft, Chang-rae Lee has delivered his most ambitious, exciting, and unforgettable work yet. It is a mesmeriz­ing novel, elegantly suspenseful and deeply affecting.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - chrissie3 - LibraryThing

This being a book of historical fiction I thought I would get a little more history than I did. There is very little in this book about either the Korean War 1950-1953 or the Japanese takeover of ... Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - librarianbryan - LibraryThing

HOLY DEBBIE FRAKKIN' DOWNER! As someone in my book club said, there is a bell curve on luck and some people are way on the far end of the bad side. Is there great literature in this fact? Sure ... Read full review

Contents

ONE Korea
TWO NewYork 1986
THREE
FIVE Yongin South Korea 1953
EIGHT
NINE
THIRTEEN
FIFTEEN
SEVENTEEN
EIGHTEEN
NINETEEN
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About the author (2010)

Chang-rae Lee is the author of Native Speaker, winner of the Hemingway Foundation/PEN Award for first fiction, A Gesture Life, and Aloft. Selected by The New Yorker as one of the twenty best writers under forty, Chang-rae Lee teaches writing at Princeton University.

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