The HoleHye-young Pyun
psychological horror, thriller
The original novel was published in 2016. Translated by Sora Kim-Russell.
Evoking Shirley Jackson and Stephen King's Misery a psychological thriller about loneliness and the dark truths we try to bury.
In this tense, gripping novel by a rising star of Korean literature, Oghi has woken from a coma after causing a devastating car accident that took his wife's life and left him paralyzed and badly disfigured. His caretaker is his mother-in-law, a widow grieving the loss of her only child. Oghi is neglected and left alone in his bed. His world shrinks to the room he lies in and his memories of his troubled relationship with his wife, a sensitive, intelligent woman who found all of her life goals thwarted except for one: cultivating the garden in front of their house. But soon Oghi notices his mother-in-law in the abandoned garden, uprooting what his wife had worked so hard to plant and obsessively digging larger and larger holes. When asked, she answers only that she is finishing what her daughter started.
A bestseller in Korea, award-winning author Hye-young Pyun's The Hole is a superbly crafted and deeply unnerving novel about the horrors of isolation and neglect in all of its banal and brutal forms. As Oghi desperately searches for a way to escape, he discovers the difficult truth about his wife and the toll their life together took on her.
Hye-young Pyun made her literary debut in Korean in 2000 when she won the Seoul Shinmun's annual New Writer's Contest with her short story "Shaking Off Dew." She has gone on to publish four short story collections and two novels. She was received several of Korea's most prestigious literary awards, including the Yi-sang Literary Award in 2014 and the Hyundae Munhak Award in 2015.