Whenever she speaks to a stranger in her native Korea, Jane Jeong Trenka is forced to explain what she is. Japanese? Chinese? The answer - that she was adopted from Korea as a baby and grew up in the United States is a source of grief, pride, and confusion.
Trenka's award-winning first book, The Language of Blood, told the story of her upbringing in a white family in rural Minnesota. Now, in this searching and provocative memoir, Trenka explores a new question: Can she make an adult life for herself in Korea?
Despite numerous setbacks, Trenka resolves to learn the language and ways of her unfamiliar birth country. In navigating the myriad contradictions and disjunctions that have made up her life, Trenka turns to the lessons from her past - in particular, the concept of dissonance and harmony learned over her years as a musician. In Fugitive Visions, named after a composition by Prokofiev, Trenka has succeeded in braiding the disparate elements of her life into a recognizable and at times heartbreaking whole.
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