In Full Bloom

So, I specifically set out to read books that fellow Asians had written and came across In Full Bloom.  I related to the protagonist so much that I finished it in 2 or 3 days.  I had to find out what happened to her so that I could get a glimpse of what might happen in my own future.

The jist of it is that Ginger Lee is a 27-year-old American-Korean woman working as an entry level assistant at a fashion magazine.  Suddenly, Ginger's mom comes to New York with a mission to get Ginger hitched.  Of course, chaos ensues.  In the process of meeting various men, Ginger discovers a lot about herself.  Her excuse to her mother's plotting is that she is focusing on her career, to which her mom gives her a lot of advice that helps Ginger get promoted.  Ginger's mom leaves after 3 weeks, but things change drastically.  In between this main storyline, there are threads of an abandoned older brother, feeling and dealing with one's Korean-ness (or otherwise non-American identity), a closet gay, and fashion magazine drama and backstabbing.

When I first started reading the book, I was so enthusiastic that I found a protagonist I could so fully identify with that if there were to be a movie, I was determined to play Ginger.  But the more I read, the more I was embarrassed that this 20+ woman was not as dependent or confident as she thought she was.  She can hardly speak any Korean and is shunned at a party.  Worse is when she goes to a Korean church with her mom and cannot speak to a man who is trying to converse with her.  Am I as pathetic as she?!  Her taste in men is also atrocious.

The book was a good length but the ending seemed somewhat forced.  I would read it again because some of the sentiments her mom expressed were so wise and something I wish someone told me about growing up.  In the end, I feel more sorry for Ginger's mom than I do for Ginger.  But they are both good examples of what I do not want to end up as.


  1. Hi! I just wanted to say that I really enjoy your blog. I like blogs that post about a diversity of things, and you do. :)

    I really like when works of fiction give you a sense of introspection, like learning more about yourself through different characters. It sounds like even though In Full Bloom ended up not being your cup of tea, you took from it an example of the kind of person you don't wanna be, and I guess that's as good of a lesson as any.

    (I also love your sidebar!! It's so neat + pretty. ❤)

    xx fragmentsofmemories

  2. @fragmentsofmemories Wow! This is the most thoughtful comment I have ever received. Thank you for making my day!

    Glad that diversity is your cup of tea! Other people are always talking about how one needs to specialize.