A heart-wrenching novel with many unexpected twists. What begins as a murder mystery becomes a story of heartbreak, of poetry, of humanity triumphant. It celebrates the power of words, in expressing hope, in giving voice to frustration and longing, in lending strength. Though the work of a prolific Korean author, the prose suffers no awkwardness through translation. It glows. Highly recommended. This effective, elaborate historical novel is from Lee, a bestseller in his native South Korea. Readers will find Lee's novel to be a satisfying mystery supplemented by rich historical detail. Inspired by the too-brief life of Korean poet-hero Yun Dong-Ju, whose surviving verses are hauntingly interspersed throughout, this work is a magnificent testimony to the profound efficacy of literature and the liberating, life-saving act of reading. If Lee's stateside debut is any indication of the quality of his other titles, English-language audiences should demand accessibility to more, also made available under the auspices of accomplished translator Kim, one hopes. For literary fiction groupies, thriller seekers, history aficionados, war voyeurs, all, this exquisite, electrifying discovery awaits. A deeply touching tribute to the power of art. With stunning language--enhanced by an insightful translation, painfully resonant characters and heart-pounding suspense--Lee crafts a gripping, complex account of literature's ability to transform and unite those it touches. Marvelous. This is a book to savor from beginning to end.