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Now as We TravelKim U-ju, Shin Eun-jung
『Now as We Travel』Author : Kim U-ju
Illustrator : Shin Eun-jung
Publisher : Changbi
Publication date : May 1, 2020
Number of pages : 136
Format : 152x225mm
ISBN : 9788936443092
Flipping Harsh Reality in Unpredictable Ways
Seven stories realistically portray children of today, with places such as a classroom, taxicab, airport and a supermarket as the stage. In this debut collection of children’s short stories, Author Kim U-ju turns her attention on vulnerable and marginalized children who exist in every corner of the world. Pinpointing the struggles of underprivileged children, she addresses the readers with ways of flipping reality unpredictably. Shin Eun-jung brings much depth to her illustrations with detailed lines and warm coloring, tailoring each piece to the tone of the story and breathing life into the characters by capturing their raw emotions of the moment.
Students who have never opened the windows in a classroom; a kid driven to a hagwon in a cab by his father; a child who steals food at a convenience store to ease hunger; and a kid who meets a man who looks just like his deceased father … The short stories in Now as We Travel feature these main characters who have traits that make them special despite the pall of gloom hanging over them. Their names, however, do not appear, with only the first-person “I” giving voice. In Anyone, all the characters are represented by numbers. In Trust Superman, the main character is named Gyu-yeon, but he cannot remember the name of the man working at the supermarket and always calls him “Superman.” With the intentional omission of names that individualize each person, the readers can easily put themselves in the place of the characters presented. This is further facilitated by the second-person voice “you” used in Now as We Travel, which gives the distinct feel of directly addressing the reader. In this way, the author reminds us that anyone can become marginalized and that we should heed their voice from a place of understanding.