Informative and Engaging

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Thank you Bookishfirst for the advanced copy of The Picture Bride by Lee Geum-yi, translated by An Seonjae. This is a well-researched historical novel about the Korean “Picture Brides” manipulated into leaving their homes and families to marry “wealthy” men in Hawaii. These young, impoverished, Korean girls exchanged pictures with Hawaiian men to create a match offering a better future for the girl and her family, but many deceived these young women. The men sent younger photos, lied about their wealth, and essentially trapped these unsuspecting girls into deceitful marriages. I was very taken with Willow’s story and her two friends. The Picture Bride taught me a great deal about the Korean independence movements and the divisions caused between the Hawaiian-Korean community. The translation was not as smooth as it could have been, and I preferred the first two parts of the book over the third because I liked Willow and her friends so much, That being said, it is an informative and recommended read. 3.5 stars.