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  • Jane, Frank and Mia

Jane, Frank and Mia

Dami Jung

English , 2022/11 Proverse Hong Kong

Tags: Novel

216 x 140 mm , 240pp ISBN / ISSN : 978-988-8492-64-0

  • US$22.00

In Stock

International Proverse Prize Winner 2021 (one of 2 winners)

Jane, Frank and Mia is about three people who cross each other’s paths by some unforeseen event. Jane and Frank are seemingly opposites. Jane is a Korean woman who came to the Netherlands to marry Mia’s father but is now divorced and raising her 15-year-old daughter Mia. Frank is Mia’s chemistry teacher and is famous for his blunt aggressive attitude. As for Mia, she has been feeling lost since her parents’ divorce, and unconsciously becomes the pivot of the story as she struggles to find herself. The lives of these three become intertwined as they recognize each other’s pain and the obstacles each face, such as discrimination, oppression, misunderstanding, and violence. The author writes, “As a member of a diaspora myself, I love reading books by writers with immigrant backgrounds. War and poverty caused earlier migrations, and often there was no possibility of return. And when you can’t go back, it gives the story finality, urgency. Later generations, people like myself, had more choices. They could return to their country of origin or move to yet another country for their career, for profit, or for love. I am intrigued by what makes a home and why people stay or leave. I wanted to tell a story about someone who’d left their home.”


A Korean woman comes to The Netherlands to marry but subsequently is divorced, brings up her daughter alone but then meets Frank, her daughter’s chemistry teacher. The lives of Jane, Frank and Mia become intertwined as they recognize each other’s pain and the obstacles each face.


There are two types of great stories. One brings you somewhere you’ve never been to. The other requires you to open your eyes and face reality. Jane, Frank and Mia is the latter. I have Janes, Franks, and Mias around me. This is a story of the people I know, who suffered, struggled, decided not to stay still, and survived. It was impossible to separate myself from this gut-wrenching and life-affirming story.

Jeenkyung Chloe Kim, former reporter at JoongAng Ilbo, author of Old Europe (Medici Media, 2021), currently based in Zurich, Switzerland, a columnist for Korean media

Jane, Frank and Mia is an extraordinary story about love. It is also a story about suffering, abuse, redemption and revenge. It is about finding oneself, understanding one’s past and controlling one’s trajectories. More than that: it is resoundingly about social, cultural and cross-cultural prejudice. In the heart of even the most liberal of societies, bigotry is close, ever close, to the surface. The often tragic consequences are revealed in the ripple effect on the lives and choices of Jane, Frank and Mia. …The plot itself is intriguing, has many moments of tension, extreme joy, fear, pleasure, insight, injustice and confusion. Most satisfyingly, it has a good dose of resolution and revenge. The environment is multilingual and multicultural, covering topics like assimilation versus identity loss, idealism, disappointment, growth and courage. Empathy is a central thematic element, with evolution through insight being preeminent. A wonderful, nuanced book, thought-provoking, heartening – especially at the end – and interesting.

Hayley Ann Solomon, New Zealand, Proverse Publication Prize winner, 2016, 2017

Dami Jung was born in Seoul, South Korea, in 1979, moved to New Zealand with her parents as a girl, and has now been living in The Netherlands since 2006. Encouraged by her parents (her father, a teacher of the Korean Language and her mother, a writer) she read avidly and wrote daily from an early age. Later, music became her equal passion. She attended Sunhwa Arts School, majoring in music composition, and earned a Bachelor of Music (BMus) degree in Musicology from the Korean National University of Arts. In New Zealand, she studied at Victoria University of Wellington (Asian Studies and Women’s Studies), and won the Westpac Chamber Music Competition (now the NZCT Chamber Music Contest) with the Ivinkaia trio, appearing on the television programme, Asia Dynamic. Later she worked as an interpreter. Until a few years ago, she wrote primarily in Korean and her first novel, “The Girl in the Air” was published in Korean by Motherbooks in 2011. As she has now spent most of her life outside Korea, she has decided to switch to English so that her family and friends can read what she writes. “Jane, Frank and Mia” is her first novel to be published in English. Her wish as a writer is to pour out stories close to her heart which can mean something to others, to help people relate and feel like they’re not alone.

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