In this mind-expanding work of speculative fiction, available in English for the first time, a South Korean writer explores the driving forces of humanity—love, hope, creation, destruction, and the very meaning of existence—in two pairs of thematically interconnected stories.
As impressive as Kim Bo-Young's intriguing stories are, their literary provenance is equally entertaining ... Lucky readers are wise to lean in and get ready to sigh and soar ... a plethora of compelling choices seems poised to enable and encourage Kim's international acclaim.
... less a conventional short story collection and more a pair of novellas accompanied by short sequels. While neither work needed continuation because of their excellent ambiguous endings, they prove to be worthy additions, building on Kim’s impressive mix of strong world-building and deep emotion ... includes author notes on Kim’s inspirations for her stories and the initial reactions of the recipients of I Am Waiting For You and On My Way To You, which are charming but frustrating, as they reference numerous works by Kim that aren’t yet available in English. More valuable is the included correspondence between the book’s two translators, Sophie Bowman and Sung Ryu.
... expansive, captivating ... These are big questions, but Bo-Young’s attempt to bring shape to them in these stories is stunning, humbling and utterly beautiful ... The collection’s translator, Sophie Bowman, should be commended on shepherding these stories so gracefully into English. They introduce complex and ambitious ideas about space travel, philosophical and metaphysical riddles playing out in worlds inhabited by gods . . . you get the idea. But even when it’s challenging, Bo-Young’s prose is always oh-so-gorgeous ... This is some of the most beautiful science fiction writing that I’ve read recently. Not every element between the pairs of stories is analogous, but sometimes, just there, right under the surface, Bo-Young has hidden common threads. The bookended stories of lovers traveling through space in time and the feelings of longing and trust in the face of astronomically impossible circumstances are particularly lovely. Even in the huge expanse of space, the second-person voices in their letters are intimate and genuine, and the emotional power of each story’s closing moments is hefty. Grab your tissues, because you may be thoroughly moved ... isn’t just a statement of action. It’s a promise: I’m waiting on your behalf, to be with you, to experience the universe’s purpose for me through you. If only we can live up to such a promise.