“The Pachinko game is a metaphor for life. Most people consider it unfair, but they have to play along,” writer Lee Min-jin of the novel Pachinko (published in 2018) said in a written interview with Dong-A Ilbo on Sunday. The book jumped to No. 70 as a bestseller on Amazon after the drama version was released on Apple TV on March 25. The Korean translation of the book, which was published in Parts 1 and 2, ranked number 1 and 2 respectively on Kyobo. List of book bestsellers.
“I thought about writing Pachinko when I was 19, but the book came out 30 years later than planned. I didn’t even imagine the book would be popular when it was first published. I just focused on telling a story that was socially and historically accurate and worth reading,” Lee said.
Lee, who was born in Seoul in 1968, immigrated to New York when he was seven years old. Her experience impacted the novel, which takes place in Busan, Osaka and New York. “The Pachinko novel is a story of Korean Japanese, who play an important role in Korean history in the 20th century. They have unique experiences that are unlike Koreans living in Korea or Korean Americans,” a- she said, explaining that they faced extreme discrimination in Japan after Korea was liberated.
“I don’t write for the market, only for readers. I try to write novels on various themes, such as politics, history, religion and family,” she replied when asked what she thought of the popularity of the novel. after it was broadcast on television. “My third novel, which I’m working on, is called American Hagwon and is about the educational aspirations of Korean Americans,” she replied when asked about her future writing plans.