I really don't think this story would have been successful as anything other than a graphic novel. The artwork (particularly all the flowers) paired w...moreI really don't think this story would have been successful as anything other than a graphic novel. The artwork (particularly all the flowers) paired with all the metaphors about growing and blossoming into a young women are wonderful, and without the illustrations some of the text could seem trite or overworked. I don't see this as a book that many teens - male or female - would immediately jump to reading (and I didn't either), but once started I think that the universal appeal of this coming-of-age story would be enough to compel most to continue reading.
I loved everything about the relationship between Ehwa and her mother, from their communication to the way Ehwa sought to understand the world and womanhood better through watching her mother's interactions with men. I wish the book had stayed more focused on this relationship rather than Ehwa's search for a man, but I think that is a statement of the time period. I have the other two books in the trilogy ready for my summer vacation!(less)