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FICTION

Welcome to a 5-Dimensional World: Baron Quirval’s Castle by Choi Jae-hoon

  • onOctober 23, 2014
  • Vol.11 Spring 2011
  • byYi Soo-hyung
Baron Quirval’s Castle
2010
304pp.

Readers will find many familiar literary works in Choi Jae-hoon’s first short story collection, such as Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes or Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein. In his new book Baron Quirval’s Castle, readers may feel familiar as if they have already come across the story in a previous novel or a movie. The book also takes interesting characters from existing myths, fairy tales, as well as witches from historical texts, and relates them in a new and varied narrative structure. Rewriting such well-known tales can only be done successfully if the writer possesses a deep knowledge of the existing works and Choi is someone who passes that test. Choi’s novel stimulates an intellectual pleasure to readers that are familiar with the original works and also holds a light to readers who have never come across the stories before.

Re-hashing existing works may be a serious barrier to the writer’s creativity as well as their pride. In this case, the writer’s reputation is dependent upon how to overcome such difficulties, yet such worries will be proven groundless when carefully reading over Choi’s work. This is because Choi does not simply take these existing characters within their original customary context but re-defines their parameters by focusing on their relevance to the darkness prevalent in modern day man. The novel has remained a popular genre because of its ability to cut to the heart of the matter and maintaining vitality pertinent to contemporary times. In this way, Choi Jae-hoon’s novel is a rewrite, but with a cutting edge. 

Author's Profile

Choi Jae-hoon (b.1973) made his literary debut when he won the new writer’s award from Literature and Society in 2007. His works include Baron Quirval’s Castle, Seven Cat Eyes, and From the Sleep of Babes.