The second short-story collection by Kim Jung-hyuk, the author of Penguin News, features a total of eight short stories, including “Syncopation D” which won the 2nd Kim You-jeong Literary Award in 2008. They represent the many sounds sampled by the author when he recorded over 600 kinds of musical instruments. Like instruments coming together in a symphony, the stories combine to make an opus consisting of variations on a theme. While the stories begin in an upbeat fashion and work to a crescendo, they end with notes in a minor key filling the vacuum. The Library of Musical Instruments is a collection to contemplate on more than one occasion.
Born in 1971 in Kimcheon, a southeastern city of South Korea, Kim Jung-hyuk graduated from the Department of Korean Language and Literature at Keimyung University. He debuted as a writer in 2000 when his novelette “Penguin News” was published in the Literature and Society magazine.
Kim Soyoung is a professional translator with over a decade of experience and a master’s degree in translation and consecutive interpretation. She is currently focused on translating Korean books (fiction or nonfiction) into English.