This is a reply post to M’s question about “Which was the first Korean book you’ve read?” I consider Korean language books as the first Korean book that I’ve read. But if you’re going to ask me about the first All-Korean book that I’ve read and that is not a language book, my answer is the children’s book that my Korean professor gave me which is entitled 착한 연이 or “Kind Yeon-i” in English. We had a Korean vocabulary exam and then I got a perfect score so my Korean reading professor gave me that book ㅋㅋ.
착한 연이 or Kind Yeon-i is a children’s story book that tells about the “Cinderella-ish” story of Yeon-i. One day, Yeon-i’s step mother asked her to get a rare herb and while on her way to the forest, Yeon-i met a prince who owns a paradise in a cave. In that paradise, Yeon-i was able to get that rare herb and became friends with the prince. The prince gave Yeon-i a blue bottle which contains a medicine that can revive a dying person. When the little girl went back home, her step mother was shocked when Yeon-i gave that rare herb because it’s winter and there should not be herbs like that in the forest. The step mother became suspicious and followed Yeon-i when she went back to the prince’s paradise in the cave. The step mother saw the paradise and set it on fire. When Yeon-i went back to the cave, everything was already burned and she saw the prince lying on the ground, lifeless. Yeon-i remembered the blue bottle and poured the medicine into the prince’s mouth and he came back to life. He said that kind Yeon-i was a gift from heaven and they should just go and live a happy life there…together^^
I really liked the story and the illustrations of the book. Since it was a children’s story book, the words are simple to understand so it wasn’t very difficult to read it. I also translated the book in Filipino and retold it to my cousin and he loved the story! I just regret that I wasn’t able to buy a lot of story books in Korea that I can use when studying Korean.
Now, I am planning to buy the Korean version of the book “Please Look After Mom” or 엄마를 부탁해 by Shin Kyung-sook and the newly released Reply 1997(응답하라 1997) novel. I need to ask Seoul Selection if I can buy these titles from them and also, I need to save money for these books.
So, have you ever read a children’s story book in Korean? Share your story!^^