Kim Jung-un; Book 21: 336 pp., 15,000 won
There are many books that introduce how to study and work for success. But this book looks into how to play in leisure time to make society better.
The author says that Koreans are known as hard-working people but they don’t have a good sense of spending their time. Lacking decent hobbies, they drink and sing in the bars and karaoke.
According to the book, such a culture could impair national competitiveness as creativity is psychologically synonymous with fun in this knowledge-oriented society. He argues that those who are good at playing “efficiently” have more chances to succeed through his cultural and psychological concepts.
Particularly, Korean society’s biggest problem lies in its lack of communication that can be restored through fun and play.
In the book, he points out the so-called baby boomers are the main culprit for anger and hatred in our society. He says they are good at fighting for democracy but unaware of pursuing true happiness and fun.
― Chung Ah-young
Paulo Coelho; Translated by Oh Jin-young from Portuguese; Munhakdongne: 398 pp., 13,500 won
Paulo Coelho is back with his first book in two years.
“Aleph” is autobiographical, looking back on his 20 years as a writer. It is a turning point for him as it reflects on his literary world and identity for a new beginning.
Published in Brazil, Turkey, Portugal, Serbia, Croatia, Spain, Hungary and the Netherlands, it has topped the best-selling lists, proving his legacy worldwide again.
The novel is based on his own thoughts about reincarnation. He meets a female violinist named Hilal during a train trip to Siberia. The two share mysterious experiences traveling time and space and learned about love, forgiveness and how to overcome the obstacles in our daily lives.
Coelho talks about shedding the old customs of today and a new beginning for tomorrow. The book says that the new beginning can be meaningful only when reflecting on the past and correcting it. Without the process, the new beginning is impossible.
The book is about his realization of his four-month journey and spiritual adventure to find joy and meaning of the life.
― Chung Ah-young
Star Audition 30 Seconds
Cho Young-soo and Kim Sung-han; The Korea Economic Daily: 260 pp., 16,800 won
Korea has become a nation of auditions. Hit reality shows such as Mnet's "Superstar K," MBC's "Star Audition" and many other similar programs have brought talented individuals in front of cameras.
Famed composer Cho Young-soo, who wrote hit K-pop songs such as SG Wannabe's "Lalala" and T-ara's "I Go Crazy Because of You," has published a guide for talent show applicants together with Sports Hankook reporter Kim Sung-han.
The book gives step by step advice, from how to pass regional preliminaries to what not to do during auditions and secrets for getting through each week's assignment.
Interviews with those who have appeared on these shows, including Huh Gak, winner of "Superstar K2" and Shayne Orok, one of the "Star Audition" finalists, add more presence to the book.
― Kwon Mee-yoo
Our Child’s First World Map Picture Book
Won Gwang-heui; Tricycle Book: 45 pp., 12,000 won
The way we perceive ourselves and the world around us is often dictated by culture; Koreans, for example, write addresses beginning with the country then the city and street. Americans on the other hand denote it the other way around. Similar differences can be perceived in traditional paintings ― oriental works often portray humans as part of the larger natural scenery while Western works often focus on the individual while the surroundings are merely the backdrop.
This book is designed to introduce Korean children to the world around them, both near and far, through “culture-coded” maps. The colorfully illustrated volume introduces not only a typical globe but divides the world into 16 major sections with a separate chapter on Korea.
It teaches not only about the geographical location of countries around the world but also iconic flora and fauna, as well as languages, costumes and heritage sites that represent them.
An expert in urban and regional planning, the author is currently deputy head of related research centers in Chungcheong Province.
― Lee Hyo-won