Preorder your copy of Ginger Park’s forthcoming historical novel THE HUNDRED CHOICES DEPARTMENT STORE.
Inspired by the author’s mother’s remembrances of her family’s painful struggles during the Russian invasion of their hometown and ultimate flight south, across the 38th parallel to Seoul, just prior to the outbreak of the Korean War.
History and heart intertwine in this gripping, deeply felt novel about a divided family in a divided country. As World War II comes to a close in northern Korea, Miyooki must confront external danger—occupying Russian soldiers, vicious border patrols—and internal doubt and grief to find her true place in a changing land. This book sings of the beauties of an old way of life—and of hope and possibility.
–Mary Quattlebaum, author of “Pirate vs. Pirate”
In this gripping, poignant novel by Ginger Park, a Korean family is torn apart by Japanese and Russian rule during World War II and sacrificial love, yet held together by faith, food, and memories. Miyook’s family owns a bustling department store in the city of Sinuiju in northern Korea, but communism forces her family to leave everything behind to escape over mountains and a river to freedom in the south. On her journey, Miyook learns that small gestures are never forgotten. I love this story.
–Tina Cho, author of “The Ocean Calls” and “Rice from Heaven”
How do you tell a tale of war, the separation of family and country, of heroes and villains, and make it sound like poetry? Ginger Park has woven a beautiful and heartbreaking story of Korea in the 20th century in “The Hundred Choices Department Store.” Her details of food and family traditions are as heartwarming as a bowl of steamy homemade noodles. The novel is an excellent introduction to life in Korea during World War II and the civil war that followed. A beautiful book.
–Kitty Felde, author of “Welcome to Washington Fina Mendoza”
“This beautifully written, heart-wrenching coming-of-age story speaks to the enduring power of familial bonds and the resiliency of the human spirit. As her world is destroyed by tyranny, subjugation, and agonizing separation, Miyook learns that a small act of kindness can have enormous consequences. The heightened pathos of deftly crafted scenes will inspire empathy and compassion for the plight of refugees. A riveting, timely, humanizing account of risking everything for freedom.”
— Jama Rattigan, Author of Dumpling Soup
“Ginger Park weaves her family’s story into a compelling novel reaching far beyond battle dates and casualties—a reminder that losses from conflict have a lasting impact, even on resilient children, and political boundaries often draw red lines through the heart.”
–Karen Leggett Abouraya, author
A fantastic middle-grade historical novel that takes place during World War II and the tumultuous years leading up to the Korean War, set on the Korean Peninsula. Drawn from stories of the author’s family, “The Hundred Choices Department Store” is a richly detailed book that chronicles a harrowing era in Korean history. This book does a great job of illustrating the hard choices so many families had to make—stay in a familiar place that has been turned upside down and face danger at the hands of people who had once been allies or venture into the unknown. This is a wonderfully written, heart-wrenching tale of family and resilience!
–Meg Wessell, Blogger, A Bookish Affair
Welcome to our writing world: It goes without saying that YES we are sisters as well as authors and co-authors of ten highly acclaimed books – novels, nonfiction memoir and award-winning children’s books.
September 2021: Author & Book News During a Time of Covid-19:
Frances and Ginger are delighted to announce the forthcoming publication of their picture book GRANDPA’S SCROLL (Albert Whitman on March 1, 2023)!
GRANDPA’S SCROLL gently explores the topic of grief. Young Lily is looking forward to meeting her pen-pal grandpa who will be visiting from Korea for the very first time. Their playful letters reflect the contrasts and similarities of the worlds they live in. But when her grandpa unexpectedly dies before his trip, Lily will, instead, visit Korea and take her own journey where the pen-pals, in an artistic sense, will meet.
Very cool site launched by Linda Sue Park featuring kids books by Korean American authors (yes, we’re included!): KiBooka
Check out this cool video in an ESL classroom in Indiana using our book My Freedom Trip: A Child’s Escape from North Korea.
Frances: THAT LONELY SPELL: Stories of Family, Friends & Love, (Heliotrope Books/Spring 2022) deals with the universal themes of love and loss, often reflecting my unique Korean American background. My parents arrived in this country in 1954; for my psyche, a generation too soon: “According to me, and surely the US Census Bureau, we were the only Korean family in West Springfield”. Pub Date: March 25, 2022
Ginger: My historical middle grade novel THE HUNDRED CHOICES DEPARTMENT STORE (Fitzroy Books, a division of Regal House Publishing) is inspired by my mother’s remembrances of her family’s painful struggles during the Russian invasion of their hometown and ultimate flight south, across the 38th parallel to Seoul, just prior to the outbreak of the Korean War. To learn more about the book, visit Ginger’s Fitzroy Books author page here: The Hundred Choices Department Store. Pub Date: March 25, 2022.
For this year’s SCBWI Local Reading Challenge, Ginger adopted Mrs. McArdle’s third grade class at Rolling Valley Elementary School in Fairfax County! She will be visiting (virtually) her class TWICE this year to talk books, her writing process, and the life of an author.
Frances and Ginger are delighted to announce the publication of The Secrets of the Waterfall – a short story curated from their previously published novel To Swim Across the World – in the Winter 2019-2020 edition of Mason Street, the literary magazine of Newark Public Library.
To celebrate API Heritage, Ginger was a featured author on Glen Echo Adventure Theatre Story Time & Author Interviews.
Frances was recently shortlisted for the Dzanc Novella Prize, and has just completed novels BLUE RICE and AHN LOVE. Her work has appeared in O, The Oprah Magazine, The Bellevue Literary Review, Spirituality & Health, The Chicago Quarterly, The London Magazine, OZY, Arts & Letters and Gulf Coast Journal, among others. Her poignant story “You Two Are So Beautiful Together” (The Massachusetts Review/Summer 2016) earned a spot on the Best American Essays Notable List.
Ginger is currently working on a young adult novel titled GHOST WORDS – a coming-of-age story inspired by her own experiences growing up Korean American in the 1980s.
Frances and Ginger also co-own Chocolate Chocolate, a magical little sweet shop located in Washington, DC, voted BEST CHOCOLATE SHOP by the readers of Washingtonian magazine. Since you can’t visit us online due to Covid-19, please visit us online. In the meantime, we were featured on NBC Washington.
Follow us on Facebook and Twitter. Or send us a note with your thoughts. We always love to hear from our readers. To write to us separately please email Frances at: email@example.com or Ginger at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Or contact us both at: email@example.com. See our other book covers below, and please visit both our Adult Books and Children’s Books pages to order and learn more about all our books!