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Into This World

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  38 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
"This fast-paced story of a family secret will keep readers turning pages."—Krys Lee, author of Drifting House

Allison flies to Seoul to discover the truth about her adopted sister. A tangled history of love and deception reunites two sisters whose fates were shaped by a long-lost love and its attendant lies, and the history of a country and a man they never understood.

Paperback, 208 pages
Published May 22nd 2012 by Engine Books
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Sara Habein
Apr 23, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: arc, own
I read from page 40-ish until the end in one evening, despite the fact that I should've gone to sleep. So that should give you an indicator of its appeal.

Read my full review at Glorified Love Letters.
Apr 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
An amazing and well-written novel. You won't be able to put it down! Wonderful!
Kelsey Wilcox
May 22, 2012 marked it as to-read
May 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all adults
Recommended to Theresa by: goodreads
I won Into This World by Sybil Baker in a giveaway for free on Goodreads First/Reads. I rated this book 5 stars*** Loved It- Sybil's writing in this book was refreshing. (nothing was overdone) I enjoyed the story of the two sisters. I know this will be one of my favorites for 2012- I was interested in the book from beginning to end, and I really liked the back ground story going on throughout the book. I formed a connection with the main characters. Sybil added just the right amount of detail to ...more
Jun 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
Initially this book was not going the right way. The characters seemed all so hurtful to each other. And because my own children age adopted it caused me some anxiety.
But the more you get to know Allison and Mina, Wayne and Sunny, the more I realized they are probably pretty real people that have a lot of unfinished business.
I really liked the descriptions of S. Korea, specially in comparison with descriptions of previous times. Now I really want to visit Korea.
So, finally, Allison's and Mina's
Jun 25, 2012 rated it really liked it
I grew up with two brothers, so I've always been fascinated by the relationship between sisters. I really enjoyed the tension between Allison and Mina, I thought it read very real. No one has a perfect relationship with their siblings, and this books highlights the fact that although siblings are family, that doesn't mean you know them or understand them.

The jumps in time were really helpful and I loved being able to see from her father's perspective. The descriptions about Korea were very evoc
Sep 05, 2012 rated it really liked it
I read this book twice in a row. The story of two half-sisters, one of whom leaves America to find her mother in Korea, was hard to put down. The book is told from three points of view: Allison's, Mina's, and their father Wayne's. The tension between the sisters is palpable, and the consequences of finding the "truth" of a family are fully explored.

I met Sybil in graduate school, and after that she spent many years living in Seoul. I've never been there, but it's fun to read about Allison's adj
Apr 14, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Sybil Baker's dazzling third novel, Into This World, is a deeply moving tale of family, betrayal, misperceptions, and love lost and found. At the heart of the novel are sisters, Allison and Mina. At the opening, Allison is at a desperate crossroads, having just learned that her sister has betrayed her in what she believes is the worst way possible. As per usual, Mina, the wild child, is at the center of their parents' thoughts as she has unexpectedly moved back to Korea and called them with a po ...more
Dec 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Into This Life
By Sybil Baker

This novel takes place in the Korea of the 1950s, Korea today, and suburban American, with two intersecting but ultimately separate plots. Both are variants on the theme of American innocents abroad. The first plot has some elements in common with “Madame Butterfly”: a young American soldier goes to Asia and becomes involved with a Korean woman. The second plot concerns his daughter, who goes to Korea several decades later seeking to bring her adoptive sister “back ho
Caleb Ludwick
Jun 22, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This is a truly remarkable novel. I admit that there were a few times in the first chapters when I nearly put it down, but I couldn't be happier that I kept reading. Because it turns out that the author was right, and I was wrong.

Around Chapter 11, the book hits a stride that puts everything that went before into context. The dialogue gets tighter, the descriptions sharper and the pace ramps up to unrelenting – all of which sustains until the novel's final lines.

In fact, Baker's hand is so def
Bradley Cannon
Aug 19, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Into This World provides a fascinating, easily assessable view into Seoul. Baker's writing intensifies with each chapter to the point that it only took me two days to read all 205 pages. For me, that's quite impressive.

This book educates and entertains all at the same time. The characters feel real, and the story is driven by a careful combination of plot events and emotional thought. The larger, structured use of intermittent flashbacks will keep readers informed and yet guessing from beginning
Nan Cuba
Jun 03, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone who likes a well written, engaging story
I loved this book, not only because the story about sisters is fascinating, but because the narrative descriptions of Seoul trasported me to a place I've never seen. Yet, now I feel I've been there, amidst the bustle, lights and noise, aromatic spices. Most good stories are about secrets, so this is no exception. Baker's ability to keep the reader guessing, weaving present and past stories, juggling two worlds, two cultures, is impressive. Highly recommended.
Sherry Hall
Jun 04, 2012 rated it really liked it
I received this book in a Good Reads give-away. It took a couple of chapters before I was engaged but then I found myself really caring about these characters and what they were experiencing. I was able to connect with them even though I don't have much in common with the characters. Enjoyable read. It even made a plane trip go faster- high praise!

Sep 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: modern-lit
With Into This World, Sybil Baker astutely delves into Korea’s dynamic, complex culture and upends the lives of a far-flung and reluctant family by dredging up secrets that cannot be reburied or ignored, forcing the characters to revisit ghosts and re-evaluate themselves and each other. About the lies we tell and those we believe, Into This World, is sure to leave you craving more.
Jodi Paloni
Sep 18, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: novels
I reviewed this book at New Pages...
Brian Conn
Jun 07, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This one picks up speed and never stops accelerating. I feel like I've been to Korea now, even though I haven't. I'm ready to go back. Well done!
Diane Knauff
May 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: first-reads
Loved this book! I only wish I would have had a chunk of time to read it when I started because it is definitely a book you could devour in one sitting.
Marilyn Bunker
rated it really liked it
May 29, 2012
Rebecca A. Baldus
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Feb 23, 2016
Courtney Mauk
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Jun 05, 2012
Jim Cangany
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May 13, 2013
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May 23, 2012
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Jan 03, 2015
Cathy Holton
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May 24, 2012
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May 18, 2012
May 17, 2012 rated it it was amazing  ·  (Review from the author)
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Aug 09, 2012
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Lindsay Quandt
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May 02, 2013
Jennifer Hairston
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Jan 23, 2013
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Sybil Baker’s latest book is Immigration Essays (C and R Press, Feb 2017). She is also the author of The Life Plan, Talismans, and Into This World, which received an Eric Hoffer Award Honorable Mention and was a finalist for Foreword’s Best Book of the Year Award. Her work has appeared in many publications including Guernica, Electric Literature, Glimmer Train, The Critical Flame, The Collagist, a ...more
More about Sybil Baker