Maija Rhee Devine

Archive for December, 2021

My Book, The Voices of Heaven, Reaches Young Generation

Posted on: December 5th, 2021 by Maija Rhee Devine

The Voices of Heaven, my autobiographical novel about growing up in Korea, a man’s love for two women (his wife and his second wife he lives with in the same house),  what they go through during the Korean War (1950-1953) and their post-war lives through 2005 is being read by social studies students in Korean International School in Seoul.  One of the 8th graders wrote an exceedingly intelligent and moving review of the book and posted it on Here is the link.  I also copy the review here.

(1) A review of The Voices of Heaven by an  8th grader at Korean International School, 11/18/21 on Goodreads website:

Hannah’s Reviews > The Voices of Heaven

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The Voices of Heaven

Maija Rhee Devine (Goodreads Author)


Hannah‘s review

Nov 18, 2021

it was amazing

bookshelves: school-read-8favorites

I thought that this book was beautifully written and carefully crafted in order to extract certain reactions and emotions from the reader especially in terms of connecting with each of the characters. I think that by alternating between the different perspectives of Soo-yang, Gui-young, Eum-chun and Mi-Na, it gives so much more depth to the story. Each character holds their own burdens and internal struggles as they try to uphold cultural traditions. I think it is admirable how the author refuses to take out or white wash any of the content and overall, it’s brutally honest and accurate on every event that occurred.

As a Korean-American growing up surrounded by western culture, concepts like boy-preference or historical events like the Korean War are things that are rather unfamiliar and untouched. But I think that after reading this book, I felt like I was starting to understand the pains and hardships of my parents, my grandparents, and the people who have come before me. I think especially with Mi-Na’s story, even though her struggles are not one that I have directly dealt with, the pressure to fulfill a parent’s expectations and be “good enough” is something that I can sympathize with and is something that is still so common regardless of how much our society has modernized and how much situations have changed. Even though we’re no longer in a war and many of us no longer have to worry about lack of food, we can still see the same themes in our society. I love how this book urges readers to make that connection between the problems in the book and the problems in the world of the readers.

I think that this book is a must-read for anyone regardless of their age or gender and I really enjoyed reading it.

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Finished Reading

November 18, 2021 – Shelved

November 18, 2021 – Shelved as: school-read-8

November 23, 2021 – Shelved as: favorites


(2) All reviews of the VOH posted on Goodreads:

#thevoicesofheaven #patriarchsouthkorea #genderinequality #sonpreference #glassceilingindex #sexratioatbirth #populationimbalance #yinandyang #chinesezodiacsigns #fengshui #koreanproverbs #koreanlanguage #hangul #thekoreanwar #syngmanrhee #harrystruman #genmacarthur #armistic #chineseinkoreanwar

Learn Korean Through K-Drama, Book 1 and 2

Posted on: December 5th, 2021 by Maija Rhee Devine
Want to learn Korean the fun way? Learn it by watching K-drama on YouTube and Netflix!
The books, Learn Korean Through K-Drama, vol. 1 and 2, provide at the beginning of each chapter a direct link to scenes of the most-watched, top-ranked K-dramas on YouTube and Netflix, like “Crash Landing On You,” “Itaewon Class,” and “My Mister.” The books also provide ample language exercises and discussions of Korean life, society, and issues that are directly related to the dialogues (in English and Korean) from the drama scenes. Hot social issues are the themes of the Learn Korean Through K-Drama, Book 2.
Seoul Selection, the publisher of my autobiographical book about Korea, The Voices of Heaven (my TEDx Talk about it:, plans to publish Book 3 of the Learn Korean Though K-Drama by early next year.
More from Seoul Selection:
Subtitled “A Glance at Issues in Korean Society,” this second book features K-drama shows that offer an in-depth view of the various issues in Korean society. Included dramas in this book (series 2) are It’s Okay Not to Be Okay (싸이코지만 괜찮아), Itaewon Class (이태원 클라쓰), My Mister (나의 아저씨) , SKY Castle (SKY캐슬), and Misaeng: Incomplete Life (미생). We hope that they provide curious readers a deeper understanding of life in Korea.
Through the scenes, readers will be able to ruminate on topics relevant not only to Koreans but to everyone living in contemporary society. Among the issues are mental health, social exclusion, non-regular employment, education, and ethics.
This book is unique in that each script comes with QR codes and Netflix timestamps that provide direct links to corresponding YouTube videos and Netflix scenes, allowing readers to access the clips at any time and understand the language content while watching and listening to it on screen.
For more details, please refer to the following press release and other info.
For purchase
(Currently Series 2 is available only in Seoul Selection Bookshop:
Look Inside (미리보기), Learn Korean Through K-Dramas 2
Look Inside (미리보기), Learn Korean Through K-Dramas 1
Hank Kim,
Seoul Selection
Translation | Publishing | Design | SEOUL Magazine
Maija Rhee Devine’s Facebook posts of the news of these books:



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