The Private Life of Plants is about the ways in which desire can both worsen and mitigate our flaws. We meet amputee sons whose mothers cart them from brothel to brothel; we meet brothers who love their brother's lovers, and whose lovers in turn are stolen away by the husbands of their sisters. Sexuality in all its ugliness and wonder is put under the microscope by Lee Seung-U, who reminds us that love may come in various forms, but that it is, nonetheless, a force that unifies us all . . . whether we like it or not.
About the Author
Lee Seung-U was born in 1959. He is a professor of Korean Literature at Chosun University. His novel The Reverse Side of Life was a finalist for the Prix Femina in 2002, and is available in English translation. J. M. Clezio, the 2008 Nobel Laureate for Literature, has remarked that Lee is Korea's strongest candidate for the Nobel Prize.
The translator, teacher, and artist Inrae You Vinciguerra has, along with her husband, translated four Korean novels into English. Exhibitions of her artwork have taken place in California, Korea, and China.
Louis Vinciguerra is an artist, teacher, and playwright. His stage biography of the German Nobel Prize winner Hermann Hesse, The Magic Spiral (HH:77), was performed at the 1978 Hesse Centennial Exhibition in West Berlin, Germany.
"'All trees are incarnations of frustrated love.' So avers this beguiling novel by the writer whom J.M. Clezio has called Korea’s most likely Nobel Prize contender....Almost certainly the oddest love story you’ll have read in a long time. Think of Murakami drifting into the lands of Borges and Kafka, and you’ll have some of the feel of this strange, enchanting tale." - Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)