E.J. Koh - The Magical Language of Others & Julia McKenzie Munemo - The Book Keeper — in conversation with Jeannie Vanasco — at Union Market

Upcoming Event
Friday, January 24, 2020 - 7:00pm to 8:00pm

Koh was fifteen when her parents, after more than ten years in the U.S., returned to Korea for work. Though she received many letters from her mother, they were in Korean and Koh wouldn’t begin to understand them until years later. In this compelling and lyrical memoir, Koh, a translator, fiction writer, and award-winning author of the poetry collection A Lesser Love, delves into her family’s history, telling the stories of mothers and daughters through four generations. As she reflects on her grandmothers’ experiences and puts them into the wider context of Korean history, she also meditates on the meanings of forgiveness, reconciliation, legacy, and intergenerational trauma.


For most of her life Munemo knew little about her father aside from that he’d suffered from depression and died by suicide when she was five. Years later, she was completely unprepared to discover that he’d written several books featuring interracial porn. In her powerful literary debut, she describes the shock that led her—as the white wife of a Black man from Zimbabwe and mother of two mixed-race sons—to try to deny what her father had done. But with an upsurge of violence against African American men going on all around her, she knew she had to confront this legacy and its wider national context. Koh and Munemo will be in conversation with Jeannie Vanasco, author of Things We Didn’t Talk About When I Was a Girl.


Politics and Prose at Union Market
1270 5th Street NE
Washington, DC 20002
Union Market
Fiction & Poetry
The Magical Language of Others: A Memoir Cover Image
ISBN: 9781947793385
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Tin House Books - January 7th, 2020

The Book Keeper: A Memoir of Race, Love, and Legacy Cover Image
ISBN: 9780804012218
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Swallow Press - January 14th, 2020

Not Signed or Personalized