“It’s silly to go on pretending that
under the skin we are all brothers. The truth is more
likely that under the skin we are all cannibals,
assassins, traitors, liars, hypocrites, poltroons.”
Sook” is the story of a sixteen-year old South Korean
girl, orphaned and struggling for survival in the war
torn landscape of Korea in 1950. Driven to prostitution
she eventually comes to be the mistress of an American
Air Force physician based outside of post-war Seoul.
What ultimately transpires between the doctor and Yung
Sook moves the story on to a surprising conclusion.
Richard Karlen’s novel is a compelling indictment of
war. The book reveals through the experiences of one
young girl, war’s devastating consequences to the people
whose homes have been turned into fields of battle. As
a victim of the inhumanities of war’s destructive
nature, Yung Sook is reflective of millions of others
who have since the dawn of civilization endured the
brutality that seems almost inherent in man’s nature.