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In 27 rough, yet tightly focused lyrics and narratives, Cathy Park Hong is Translating Mo'um i.e., interpreting for mom, that bane of the first generation, yet also bringing her into her own work. A Korean-American from Los Angeles and Brooklyn now attending the Iowa Writers' Workshop, Hong effortlessly reduces stereotypes to phonetic rubble: "Korean characters, like stiff phonetic Legos, wait to join with one another while St. Jerome writes with his single eyelash quill in his painfully exact studio." Whether issuing an "Assiduous Rant" or exploring the multilingual possibilities of forms of "Androgenous Pronoun," Hong delivers "the hissing world, cold rain, and a tale that burned in its preamble."
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I read Translating Mo'um in one sitting and was completely transfixed. I think it's a really strong debut collection that's full of frank and jagged energy. Read morePublished on June 30, 2007 by loose goose
It is surprising to me that this disparate collection somehow found a publisher. Disregard the positive reviewers who are not surprisingly all from places the author has lived in... Read morePublished on June 27, 2006 by HawkeyeRx
This is a forceful and exciting collection by this emerging poet. I can't wait to see what she will bring out next.Published on May 10, 2006 by spark213
To suggest that Ms. Hong talks TOO MUCH about being found attractive by non-Asian Americans is almost to imply that she enjoys being fetishized, glories in it; a classic Western... Read morePublished on February 19, 2005 by tineefob