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The Color of the Sky Is the Shape of the Heart

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The Color of the Sky Is the Shape of the Heart

By  Chesil , Translated by  Takami Nieda
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Now in translation for the first time, the award-winning debut that broke literary ground in Japan explores diaspora, prejudice, and the complexities of a teen girl’s experience growing up as a Zainichi Korean, reminiscent of Min Jin Lee's classic Pachinko and Sandra Cisneros’s The House on Mango Street.

Seventeen-year-old Ginny Park is about to get expelled from high school—again. Stephanie, the picture book author who took Ginny into her Oregon home after she was kicked out of school in Hawaii, isn’t upset: she only wants to know why. But Ginny has always been in-between; she can't bring herself to open up to anyone about her past, or about what prompted her to flee her native Japan. Then, among the scraps of paper and drawings of Stephanie's stories, Ginny finds a mysterious scrawl that changes everything: The sky is about to fall. Where do you go?
Ginny sets off alone on the road in search of an answer, with only her journal as a confidante. In witty and brutally honest vignettes, and interspersed with old letters from her expatriated family in North Korea, Ginny recounts her adolescence growing up Zainichi, a Japan-born Korean, and the incident that forced her to leave years prior. Inspired by her own childhood, author Chesil creates a portrait of a girl who has been fighting alone against barriers of prejudice, nationality, and injustice all her life—and one searching for a place to belong.

Chesil attended film school to become an actor and live her childhood dream of romping the streets of Gotham City and playing a pirate, until a screenwriting professor discovered her talent and steered her to writing. She decided to mark the end of her 20s by writing a novel inspired by events during her childhood. That novel became her debut book, The Color of the Sky is the Shape of the Heart.

Takami Nieda was born in New York City and has degrees in English from Stanford University and Georgetown University. She has translated and edited more than twenty works of fiction andnonfiction from Japanese into English and has received numerous grants in support of her translations, including the PEN/Heim Translation Fund for the translation of Kazuki Kaneshiro's GO. Her translations have also appeared in Words Without Borders, Asymptote, and PEN America. Formerly an assistant professor of translation at Sophia University in Tokyo, Japan, Nieda currently teaches writing and literature at Seattle Central College in Washington State.

ISBN: 9781641292290

ISBN-10: 9781641292290

Publisher: Soho Teen

Publication Date: 04/05/2022 - 12:00am

On Sale: 04/05/2022 - 12:00am

Language: English


Young Adult Fiction / People & Places / United States / Asian American

Young Adult Fiction / Social Themes / Prejudice & Racism

Young Adult Fiction / Family / Multigenerational