Coming August 6 from Simon & Schuster
I am currently reading Paul Yoon’s gorgeous and evocative debut Snow Hunters. I am in utter awe. This novel is only 194 pages, but its spare, measured prose, its subject matter, and its main character give this story a powerful heft. Yoon has moved me to tears in many instances, proving this shining young talent, from whom we all expected great things, has arrived with a bang.
In this elegant, haunting, and highly anticipated debut novel from 5 Under 35 National Book Foundation honoree Paul Yoon, a North Korean war refugee confronts the wreckage of his past. With spare, evocative prose, Snow Hunters traces the extraordinary journey of Yohan, who defects from his country at the end of the war, leaving his friends and family behind to seek a new life in a port town on the coast of Brazil.
Though he is a stranger in a strange land, throughout the years in this town, four people slip in and out of Yohan’s life: Kiyoshi, the Japanese tailor for whom he works, and who has his own secrets and a past he does not speak of; Peixe, the groundskeeper at the town church; and two vagrant children named Santi and Bia, a boy and a girl, who spend their days in the alleyways and the streets of the town. Yohan longs to connect with these people, but to do so he must sift through his traumatic past so he might let go and move on.
In Snow Hunters, Yoon proves that love can dissolve loneliness; that hope can wipe away despair; and that a man who has lost a country can find a new home. This is a heartrending story of second chances, told with unerring elegance and absolute tenderness.
About the Author:
Paul Yoon was born in New York City. His first book, Once the Shore, won the Asian American Literary Award for Fiction and was selected as a New York Times Notable Book, a Los Angeles Times, San Francisco Chronicle, Publishers Weekly, Minneapolis Star Tribune Best Book of the Year, and a National Public Radio Best Debut of the Year. His work has appeared in the PEN/O. Henry Prize Stories, The Best American Short Stories, and he is the recipient of a 5 under 35 Award from the National Book Foundation. He is currently on the faculty of the Bennington Writing Seminars.