Welcome to the first global virtual book club! Facilitated by OverDrive, Big Library Read is an initiative connecting readers from around the world with the same ebook at the same time without any wait lists or holds. This worldwide book club is free to join, but to get started you'll need to download the Libby app and have your library card.
Grace M. Cho grew up as the daughter of a white American merchant marine and the Korean bar hostess he met abroad. They were one of few immigrants in a xenophobic small town during the Cold War, where identity was politicized by everyday details—language, cultural references, memories, and food. When Grace was fifteen, her dynamic mother experienced the onset of schizophrenia, a condition that would continue and evolve for the rest of her life.
Part food memoir, part sociological investigation, Tastes Like War is a hybrid text about a daughter’s search through intimate and global history for the roots of her mother’s schizophrenia. In her mother’s final years, Grace learned to cook dishes from her parent’s childhood in order to invite the past into the present, and to hold space for her mother’s multiple voices at the table. And through careful listening over these shared meals, Grace discovered not only the things that broke the brilliant, complicated woman who raised her—but also the things that kept her alive.
Grace M. Cho is the author of Tastes Like War, a 2021 National Book Awards finalist, and "Haunting the Korean Diaspora: Shame, Secrecy, and the Forgotten War", which received a 2010 book award from the American Sociological Association. Her writings have appeared in journals such as the New Inquiry, Poem Memoir Story, Contexts, Gastronomica, Feminist Studies, WSQ, and Qualitative Inquiry. She is associate professor of sociology and anthropology at the College of Staten Island, CUNY.
Visit our digital catalog (or log in to the Libby app) anytime from May 3-17 and download this eBook or eAudiobook with no wait list!