Books | Teach English, Write Tell-all for 16.95
Though there is a striking plethora of blogs detailing the subject of the Korea experience, there are not that many published books.
We remember that in 2005, Island Fantasy: A Memoir of an English Teacher in Korea was self-published by Korea Life blogger Shawn Matthews. It depicted the dreamy innocence of an English teacher’s life in a pastoral place at the edge of modernity. His Korea Life Blog, later turned into a book, was about his discovery of modernity–and stray cats.
By the time he passed away, the scandals of 2006 through 2007 had soiled the reputation of English teachers all across the land. That tumultuous period produced one book by Cullen Thomas, who at 23-years of age, wide eyed and middle class, had mailed himself a kilogram of hashish and was imprisoned in a South Korean prison. After his parole he published his account in Brother One Cell: An American Coming of Age in South Korea’s Prisons.
This year has produced a contribution from a 37-year old Australian novelist and former English teacher Dave Franklin. After teaching in Andong, South Korea and presumably for TOSS Academy, he penned English Toss on Planet Andong. His fourth novel, English Toss is described as a “biting black comedy that centers on the wildly dysfunctional expat community teaching English in South Korea.”
By the looks of it, not one of these books has made a best-seller list, and so James Clavell is not sweating in his grave. Hopefully, someone –and might I interject other than white guys coming to Asia, so cliche– will find something really interesting about the English teaching experience that we might be entertained by our own lives. Is this wishful thinking?