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Crying in H Mart: A Memoir

Crying in H Mart: A Memoir

One of the best books I’ve ever read, this one will win awards. It’s a mother/daughter memoir at its core, and I’m not sure there’s anything between them that you or I haven’t experienced or known of: this one is all about the writing. Somehow all of Zauner’s heart is laid bare in her prose and yours will thump right along with hers. Her Korean mother and Vietnam vet dad raise her best they can in California. She’s an only child. Typical tensions are revealed, especially from during Zauner’s teens, but the mother/daughter bond is so strong, it overcomes the resentments of both when Michelle comes all the way back home when mom falls ill. Together, guided by the comforts of home cooking, they find their way to understanding.  Universal emotions and experiences, so so well told. Astonishing. - Sandy

NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER - From the indie rock sensation known as Japanese Breakfast, an unforgettable memoir about family, food, grief, love, and growing up Korean American--"in losing her mother and cooking to bring her back to life, Zauner became herself" (NPR) - CELEBRATING OVER ONE YEAR ON THE NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER LIST

In this exquisite story of family, food, grief, and endurance, Michelle Zauner proves herself far more than a dazzling singer, songwriter, and guitarist. With humor and heart, she tells of growing up one of the few Asian American kids at her school in Eugene, Oregon; of struggling with her mother's particular, high expectations of her; of a painful adolescence; of treasured months spent in her grandmother's tiny apartment in Seoul, where she and her mother would bond, late at night, over heaping plates of food.

As she grew up, moving to the East Coast for college, finding work in the restaurant industry, and performing gigs with her fledgling band--and meeting the man who would become her husband--her Koreanness began to feel ever more distant, even as she found the life she wanted to live. It was her mother's diagnosis of terminal cancer, when Michelle was twenty-five, that forced a reckoning with her identity and brought her to reclaim the gifts of taste, language, and history her mother had given her.

Vivacious and plainspoken, lyrical and honest, Zauner's voice is as radiantly alive on the page as it is onstage. Rich with intimate anecdotes that will resonate widely, and complete with family photos, Crying in H Mart is a book to cherish, share, and reread.

Publication Date: 
April 20, 2021