4.9
Uncomfortably Happily

Uncomfortably Happily by Yeon-sik Hong

The Guardian review:

“Tells the story of its author’s decision to leave 21st-century Seoul and move with his wife to a small house on top of a mountain. Will the simple life make these city dwellers less anxious?”

Featured in The Guardian’s Best Graphic Novels of 2017.

Aggregated customer review rating:

4.9 out of 5.0

Ranked 12th in Books

Ranked 5th in Fiction

Ranked 2nd in Graphic Novels

$ 20

Yeon-Sik and his wife, Sohmi Lee, are looking for a new place when they decide to move to a cabin on a mountain outside of a remote rural town. They’re in love with the romance of country life—and too poor for the city. What follows isn’t exactly disillusionment, but it’s not quite happy as well.

Hong and his wife want to escape the chaos of Seoul for the tranquillity of the country, thinking the fresh air and quiet will allow both artists to be more productive. But renting a house on a rural mountainside brings with it a series of new challenges.

Uncomfortably Happily, then, is much more than the story of a city couple moving to the country. It carefully explores the thin divides between men and women, success and failure, the pensive and the playful, resulting in a book that is as complex and wonderful as building a home with the person you love. They are excited to use briquette to save money and heat the huge house. The whole situation is a little humorous, a little surreal, but also simple and down to earth.

The drawings in the book express the depth of emotions of the couple’s experiences. Hong also playfully expresses darker feelings of rage and despair. Winner of the Manhwa Today award, Uncomfortably Happily uniquely explores our narrator’s inner world. This book offers a sheer portrayal of present-day consumer culture where uncertain jobs and student loans create constant anxiety that shapes people’s behavior and perception.

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