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  • Shelter

  • A Novel
  • By: Jung Yun
  • Narrated by: Raymond Lee
  • Length: 8 hrs and 45 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (7 ratings)

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Shelter

By: Jung Yun
Narrated by: Raymond Lee
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Summary

You can never know what goes on behind closed doors.

One of The Millions' Most Anticipated Books of the Year (selected by Edan Lepucki).

Kyung Cho is a young father burdened by a house he can't afford. For years he and his wife, Gillian, have lived beyond their means. Now their debts and bad decisions are catching up with them, and Kyung is anxious for his family's future.

A few miles away, his parents, Jin and Mae, live in the town's most exclusive neighborhood, surrounded by the material comforts that Kyung desires for his wife and son. Growing up, they gave him every possible advantage - private tutors, expensive hobbies - but they never showed him kindness. Kyung can hardly bear to see them now, much less ask for their help. Yet when an act of violence leaves Jin and Mae unable to live on their own, the dynamic suddenly changes, and he's compelled to take them in.

For the first time in years, the Chos find themselves living under the same roof. Tensions quickly mount as Kyung's proximity to his parents forces old feelings of guilt and anger to the surface, along with a terrible and persistent question: How can he ever be a good husband, father, and son when he never knew affection as a child?

As Shelter veers swiftly toward its startling conclusion, Jung Yun leads us through dark and violent territory where, unexpectedly, the Chos discover hope. Shelter is a masterfully crafted debut that asks what it means to provide for one's family and, in answer, delivers a story as riveting as it is profound.

©2016 Jung Yun (P)2016 Macmillan Audio

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  • Sarah j
  • 01-06-16

Heartbreakingly raw, real unresolved

Any additional comments?

This is a spectacular book however to say I enjoyed it would be wrong. It was depressing until the end. there were no reprieves no happy accidents that blur the line of plausibility, no feel good warmth at the end. Everything about it was real, raw and struck a deep painful cord that stayed with me for weeks after. It was like nothing I have ever read. The author's talents lie way beyond the spectrum of her peers in that she is able to weave a beautiful gripping tale without giving in to cliches, predictability, or straying from reality no matter how distasteful and unpalatable . Initially the protagonist was so cloyingly depressed and irritating I almost stopped : thinking " You want me to feel sorry for this guy?" However by the end I was identifying with him so closely his pain was mine. If you are looking for a book that renews your faith in humanity or makes the world seem alright this isn't it but in my opinion it offers something better.

4 people found this helpful

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  • Angi
  • 23-05-16

A well crafted story about the ongoing effects of racism and family violence

What begins as a crime scene develops into a story about the ripple effect that physical and emotional abuse has on the next generation. In this case the family are well off and highly educated Korean immigrants. The point of view is from the only son whose parents settled in a university town in the seventies, where the population was mainly white American. The story begins in the present day when they experience a home invasion and it deals with how this event affects the married son's already rocky relationship with his wife and son. The main character was believable and his inner dialogue plays a strong part in holding the reader's interest. I thought the pace was good, interesting characters and the ending was believable, without resolving things it presented a realistic scenario.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Just another Jo(anna)
  • 19-05-16

Just ok

Once begun, I wanted to finish, but as I suspected, it lacked in various ways, and after all the time spent listening, I wasn't particularly moved one way or another in the end, and by any of the characters. Just ok....

2 people found this helpful

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  • Roxanna
  • 30-12-16

Worth it!

A tale of self-doubt and dark family secrets wrapped in suspense! We'll worth listening /reading.

1 person found this helpful

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  • MC
  • 04-03-19

An Audible Gem.

Shelter skillfully illustrated how domestic violence's repercussions have no boundaries, nor deadline.

This book was utterly....real. I greatly respected the literature, because of it's unwavering dedication to this. The raw nature was an emotional rollercoaster, both infuriating and heartbreaking, several times over.

Shelter articulated how tragedy effects everyone differently. Including some of the most destructive power that our deepest wounds may possess; the ability to re-create a lifetime of them.

Oh, yeah. The narrator seriously deserves 10 stars. GREAT choice!

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  • K.Eid
  • 22-09-18

A little over the top

This book started out good but then quickly went a little over the top. The main character doesn't really act realistically and I found it hard to be drawn into his narrative. Towards the end I found myself rolling my eyes at some of his thoughts. Not the worst book I've "read" but if I could go back in time I would choose something else.

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  • RueRue
  • 06-09-18

Unexpected page turner

From the plot description, this would not appear to be anything close to a traditional page-turner, but for me, it deserves that discription. I was drawn into this sad story of a broken family. Yes, the central family, the Chos, are all culpable to varying degrees, by the end of the book the author has managed to make each of them understandable, even sympathetic. A very compelling, well-written book. I thought the narration was a bit flat, but perhaps this is is a good thing; it helped to keep some distance from the rawness of the family breakdown.

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  • Ying Yu
  • 07-08-18

Heavy as F**k, But Incredibly Gripping

Written by a fellow Asian (woohoo!).

This book is all about watching the darkness unfold after a tragedy that forces the main character to reconnect with their parents, despite their strained relationship. It really shows how a person can be affected by their upbringing. The book is graphic, honest, & sad, and it immediately drew me in.

I could relate to the main character very well, as we both grew up in an Asian household in America. I highty recommend this book, as it's very well written. I love the pacing; the book is straight-forward but full of details. If you're looking for a honest, morbid book, definitely check this out!

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  • Karen W. Lam
  • 13-07-18

I Tried, But Failed...

The writing is good but the lead character is so annoying: snivelling, self-piteous and selfish. If he weren't fictional, I would want to reach over and smack him upside the head. Got halfway through before I realized I didn't care what happened to him or his family and decided to put myself out of the misery of his world.

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  • Aunt Kippy
  • 21-11-17

Well-told story

Although I felt a bit cheated by the end of the story, it was a great ride. The narrator did a terrific job of capturing distinct voices for each of the characters.