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5.0 out of 5 stars Emotional, evocative, well-written
I collect books about Korean, and have read many novels, poems and non-fiction works, but Lost Names is certainly one of the best. Small details and major characters both help to build an accurate, emotional depiction of Koreans and the struggle to live during the brutal Japanese occupation of World War II. I read this book in one sitting, mailed it to one of my sisters,...
Published on Feb. 6 2002 by Maria C. Gudaitis

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3.0 out of 5 stars Family, struggle, and fear.
This book is about the struggles of a Korean boy during the Japanese occupation in Korea. Many of the characters on non-fiction, but most of the story it self is fiction, based on true events. The Japanese did everything in their power to take away the Korean culture and make it their own, from taking their names to beating the Japanese language into them laterally...
Published on April 13 2004 by Molly Blaes


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3.0 out of 5 stars Family, struggle, and fear., April 13 2004
By 
Molly Blaes (Olathe, KS USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Lost Names: Scenes from a Korean Boyhood (Paperback)
This book is about the struggles of a Korean boy during the Japanese occupation in Korea. Many of the characters on non-fiction, but most of the story it self is fiction, based on true events. The Japanese did everything in their power to take away the Korean culture and make it their own, from taking their names to beating the Japanese language into them laterally. Through an emotional depiction of what was going on in Korea from 1932-1945 while the Japanese staked claim on the country. Told from the point of view of a young Korean boy the reader is intrigued by the casual conversational tone of the book, but captured by the emotional rollercoaster it seems to take you on. In the beginning of the book you are given a scene on a train passing through Manchuria, in the frozen winter. In history class we have learned of the harsh winters, and of Manchuria but it is books such as these that really bring what happened in history to life, and makes me realize to boys and girls who were once just like me lived through this. The only thing I would have to say that I really didn't enjoy about this book is that it was told through the eyes of a very young boy, and starts when he is only a year old. In my opinion a book told through the eyes of a child who is only a year old doesn't make a whole lot of sense. Other than that it was a good read, and very good way to tie human lives, and dignity into history.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Emotional, evocative, well-written, Feb. 6 2002
By 
Maria C. Gudaitis (Washington State, USA) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Lost Names: Scenes from a Korean Boyhood (Paperback)
I collect books about Korean, and have read many novels, poems and non-fiction works, but Lost Names is certainly one of the best. Small details and major characters both help to build an accurate, emotional depiction of Koreans and the struggle to live during the brutal Japanese occupation of World War II. I read this book in one sitting, mailed it to one of my sisters, and have bought a copy for another sister. Some passages are humorous, and others are painfully sad...but the author infuses the entire work with hope and forgiveness. The main character's father is a memorable study of dignity, wisdom and strength. My 13 year old son has read this book four times! It is slightly mature for a young reader, but if you or your child have any interest in Korea, you'll love it. A must-read for any Korean-Americans wanting to understand the deprivation, tenacity and social conditions forced upon their parents or grandparents, who survived the harsh conditions of life in Korea during WWII.
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4.0 out of 5 stars Captivating -- I couldn't put it down., Jan. 1 2000
This review is from: Lost Names: Scenes from a Korean Boyhood (Paperback)
As an avid student of Asian history and culture, I've read many accounts of the Japanese occupation of Korea. This is the best so far.
As I have lived in Korea for 10+ years, I have Korean friends in the same age group as the author, Richard Kim. From the first-hand accounts I have heard from my friends, I believe Lost Names accurately describes conditions for the common Korean citizen during the Occupation period.
Through the entire book, I believed I was reading the author's autobiography. I didn't realize that was not the case until I read the Author's Note on the last page. I kept wondering why, since these were his memoirs, the author didn't write in the past tense.
For me personally, the book would have been easier to read if it had been written in the past tense. In any case, I highly recommend this book for those who love to learn about the tragic history of the beautiful Land of the Morning Calm.
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3.0 out of 5 stars A nice story though hard to get into, Sept. 21 2000
By 
Lisa Sloane (Gaithersburg, Md) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Lost Names: Scenes from a Korean Boyhood (Paperback)
The story was simple and it was an easy and somewhat captivating read. Though I felt the author could have been a little more emotional, I liked the novel and am glad to have read it. I feel the characters were a little under-developed and the story line jumped around many of times, leaving out things I thought would have increased the connection between reader and character.
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4.0 out of 5 stars in the end, worth reading but..., Jan. 18 2001
By A Customer
This review is from: Lost Names: Scenes from a Korean Boyhood (Paperback)
How could such a young child have such complex thoughts? That's what I was thinking the whole time I was reading it. If author was going to incorporate historical information, maybe he should not have used the first-person narrative.
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Lost Names: Scenes from a Korean Boyhood
Lost Names: Scenes from a Korean Boyhood by Richard E. Kim (Paperback - June 10 1998)
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