New Historical Fiction

This is the story of three Korean “picture brides” during the first quarter of the twentieth century. Many young women left everything they had known in Korea to become brides in Hawaii. The only contact these women had with their future husbands was in the form of photographs. The pictures may or may not have been that of their future husbands. Many brides were disappointed when they finally met their husbands.

Arriving in 1918, Willow’s husband is Taewan. He did not want to get married. The woman he loved died. Willow’s friend Hongju, a young widow, was disappointed after meeting her new husband. Songwha, the daughter of an outcast in Korea, is stuck with an abusive old husband.

Willow agreed to become a picture bride because she believed she would attend school in Hawaii. That did not happen. Instead, she needed to take care of her father-in-law and support her family. Willow’s husband joined the movement to gain Korea’s independence from Japan. He even traveled to China to fight the Japanese.

Lee Geum-yi is a popular prolific Korean author. This is the first of her books that have translated into English. It is a story for fans of historical fiction revealing what it was like to become a “picture bride”.



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