Grace Notes is an ambitious memoir, June 15, 2009, by Betty Rothman

“Grace Notes is an ambitious memoir, telling of the author’s life in Korea and her immigration to America to follow her dream of becoming a famous cellist. Her honest, emotional revelations make this an appealing book. She shares her family struggles, loves and losses openly and fearlessly. I thoroughly enjoyed reading about her journey to discover her own life’s grace notes.”

We need more memoirs like this, June 20, 2009, by E. Chang

“Ms. Bukaty writes an honest, enveloping memoir of trials and tribulations, but also of pure joy and love. One of the most remarkable things about this memoir is its author, a first-generation Korean-American mother. How often do first-generation Asian-American women write memoirs of their lives, in English, no less? The author of Grace Notes does an excellent job of balancing her Korean and American lives, earning her the true title of a Korean-American woman. From the beginning I was drawn in by her childhood experiences, and especially her relationships with her father, mother and sisters. Furthermore, you will find yourself effortlessly learning about what it is like to grow up in Korea – with the holidays, funerals and preparation of traditional meals described in complete detail. The author’s note is another highlight of the book, as it artistically, poetically explains why she chose to write the story of her life. Upon finishing the book, you will wonder who wrote this book, but at the same time, you will feel as if you experienced everything by her side.”

The blessings and toll of life., June 18, 2009, by B. Baker (Los Angeles, CA USA)

“Sang-Eun Lee Bukaty’s beautiful autobiography is rich in scope and as honest as anything I have ever read.
From the very first pages I was hooked. Beginning in Seoul we are introduced to a family of tradition and heritage,
and unfortunately for grandfather, another granddaughter.

Sang-Eun invites us into her life’s story and captures our hearts. From the invasion of South Korea to her family’s harrowing ordeal during occupation, I felt like I was reading a spy novel. With brutally honest descriptions of life and the confusion and pain of dealing with issues that all children face, it was stirring to know that someone could put such thoughtful and poignant words down on paper.

Her life as an artist begins and it is wonderful. There are stories about music and food and boys, and yet throughout it all her devotion to her family and talent is inspirational. Life in America proves to be a challenge, but with her usual grace and economy she takes us on a ride that is both funny and heartbreaking. I recommend it not just to mothers and daughters, but also to anyone who yearns to experience a journey worth taking. It is an important book about the blessings and toll of life.

Sang-Eun Lee Bukaty’s Grace Notes is engaging and memorable., by Mary Connor, President of the Korea Academy for Educators

“Sang-Eun Lee Bukaty’s Grace Notes is engaging and memorable. The author shares childhood memories of growing up during the Korean War, her experiences as a young and talented cellist, and the decision to come to the United States on her own when she was twenty years old. As she shares her difficulties of adapting to life in the United States, we deepen our understanding of the challenges faced by the first wave of Korean immigrants during the 1960s and early 1970s. Her account is a valuable gift for the second generation of Korean Americans who may have grown up without appreciating their rich heritage, the courage and sacrifices of their parents, and their belief in the importance of education, devotion to family, and faith helped to achieve the American dream.”
Mary Connor, President of the Korea Academy for Educators

Grace Notes is intelligent, heartbreaking and magnificently alive… Memoirs Ink

“Grace Notes is intelligent, heartbreaking and magnificently alive. Sang-Eun Lee Bukaty has an extraordinary gift for observation and language. Bukaty’s memoir is a strong-willed, sensitive and deeply human tale of survival and true love.”
– Memoirs, Ink

“Grace Notes is an engaging, poignant story…, by Kathleen Peterson

“Grace Notes is an engaging, poignant story of a girl’s pursuit of a dream and
of her journey into adulthood as an immigrant in the United States. It is
full of vivid detail about life in Korea
and provides a heart-wrenching portrait
of the loneliness of being an exchange student.” – Kathleen Peterson, Attorney