A teenage boy who cannot feel emotions and a hotheaded troublemaker discover how love, friendship, and persistence can change a life forever in this remarkable debut novel from a rising international literary star.
This story is, in short, about a monster meeting another monster.
One of the monsters is me.
Yunjae was born with a brain condition called alexithymia that makes it hard for him to feel emotions. He does not have friends—the two almond-shaped neurons located deep in his brain have seen to that—but his devoted mother and grandmother provide him with a safe and content life.
On Christmas Eve—Yunjae’s sixteenth birthday—everything changes. A shocking act of random violence shatters his world, leaving him on his own. Struggling to cope with his loss, Yunjae retreats into silent isolation, until troubled teenager Gon arrives at his school, and the two develop a surprising bond.
As Yunjae begins to open his life to new people—including a girl at school—something slowly changes inside him. And when Gon suddenly finds his life at risk, Yunjae will have the chance to step outside of every comfort zone he has created to perhaps become the hero of his own story.
Praise for Almond:
“In her debut novel, director and screenwriter Sohn makes the bold decision to choose an emotionally constricted first-person narrator, but the risk pays off. With the aid of a skillful translation…the novel will appeal fully to adults, but mature young readers who must cope in their everyday lives with the struggles of late adolescence will find themselves identifying with Yunjae and moved by his plight. A sensitive exploration of what it's like to live at life's emotional poles.”—Kirkus Reviews
"Intense and moving . . . a phenomenal book that deserves a wide audience among readers."—Wall Street Journal
- Publisher: HarperVia
- ISBN: 9780062961389
- Format: Paperback
203 mm x 135 mm