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Chamara is difficult to translate from Korean to English: To stand it, to bear it, to grit your teeth and not cry out? To hold on, to wait until the worst is over? Such is the burden Samuel Park's audacious, beautiful, and strong heroine, Soo-Ja Choi, faces in This Burns My Heart, an epic love story set in the intriguing landscape of postwar South Korea. On the eve of marriage to her weak, timid fiancé, Soo-Ja falls in love with a young medical student. But out of duty to her family and her culture she turns him away, choosing instead a world that leaves her trapped by suffocating customs. In a country torn between past and present, Soo-Ja struggles to find happiness in a loveless marriage and to carve out a successful future for her only daughter. Forced by tradition to move in with her in-laws, she must navigate the dangers of a cruel household and pay the price of choosing the wrong husband. Meanwhile, the man she truly loves remains a lurking shadow in her life, reminding her constantly of the love she could have had. Will Soo-Ja find a way to reunite with her one true love or be forced to live out her days wondering "what if " and begin to fully understand the meaning of chamara? He is not just telling her to stand the pain, but giving her comfort, the power to do so. Chamara is an incantation, and if she listens to its sound, she believes that she can do it, that she will push through this sadness. And if she is strong about it, she'll be rewarded in the end. It is a way of saying, I know, I feel it, too. This burns my heart, too.
Wanderlust: A Book Club Sampler from Simon & Schuster is your boarding pass to the beautiful, the mysterious, and the unknown. This book club sampler was created to pay homage to a book's unique ability to transport your imagination around the world, taking you on journeys across distance and time. Whether you're in the mood for a historical love story set on a sheep station in rural Australia or an illuminating memoir of life in the war-torn Middle East, these are books you and your reading group won't want to miss: Day of Honey: A Memoir of Food, Love, and War by Annia Ciezadlo, Wildflower Hill by Kimberley Freeman, The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman, Amaryllis in Blueberry by Christina Meldrum, The Hundred-Foot Journey by Richard C. Morais, The Distant Hours by Kate Morton, This Burns My Heart by Samuel Park, An Atlas of Impossible Longing by Anuradha Roy. Each excerpt in Wanderlust is accompanied by a collection of bonus materials intended to enrich your reading experience, including discussion questions, suggestions for enhancing your book club meeting, and author interviews. In the spirit of looking to the horizon, we also asked each author featured in this sampler one question: "What is your favorite travel memory?" Their answers are fittingly diverse--from Christina Meldrum's summers spent at a family cottage in Lake Margrethe, Michigan, to Alice Hoffman's inspirational first trip to Masada, the setting of her epic new novel The Dovekeepers. Anuradha Roy, the author of An Atlas of Impossible Longing, describes the lure of armchair travel best: "All readers...carry within themselves sediments of the places they have traveled to in books, the people they've met on the way. Therefore the strange dÉjÀ vu is when you land in a foreign country and wonder if you've been there before." So, sit back, relax, and get ready for the trip of a lifetime. Bon Voyage!
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