Hee-Joo Han

July 17, 2009

…..I was deeply moved for your honesty and courage to share your  
personal story with your readers. Your book is written beautifully and  
professionally. It is heartbreaking as well as heartwarming. I was  
totally engaged throughout your book.

Almost all of first generation of Korean Americans had similar  
experiences in adapting to a different culture and language for the  
pursuit of their American dreams. Therefore, Korean readers of our  
generation as well as our next generation would be able to easily  
connect to your book, be touched, and appreciate it.

    Heejoo Han

In-Sook Lee, 이 인숙

July 17, 2009

Message: 자랑스런 상은씨께,

축하의 박수를 보내드립니다. 상은씨의 자서전을 얼마나 잘 읽었는지, 어떻게 표현을 해야할지 모르겠네요. 그래서 생각하다가 이 편지를 쓰기로 했습니다.

이민 1세로서 그렇게 훌륭하게 영어로 잘 쓰신데 대하여 박수와 찬사를 아끼고 싶지 않습니다. 아직까지는 이민 1세들 중에서는 영어로 책을 쓰는 분들이 아주 드문 것 같은데, 상은씨는 참으로 놀라운 분이셔오.

개성이 뚜렷한 분이시고 용기 있는 분이에요. 그렇게 대학에서 여러 학기를 쓰기 공부를 하신 것부터 너무나 잘 하신 것이잖아요. 원래 글쓰는데 재주를 타고 난 분에다가 전적으로 Writing공부를 하고 쓰신 것이 장하고 자랑스러워요.

어쩜 그렇게도 수식어가 풍부한지에도 계속 감탄하며 읽었으며, 숨김없이 솔찍하고 정직하게 쓰신 점에 대하여 참으로 좋게 여겼습니다.

또 기회가 있을 때마다 우리 문화에 대한 설명을 자세하게 겿들여서 쓰신 점도 너무나 좋았고, 같은 시대 배경을 가지고 살아 온 한인 이민 1세로서 공감하는 바가 많았어요. 상은씨의 이야기는 저의 감정을 100퍼센트 사로 잡았어요.

그야말로 히노애락이 노골적으로 표현되었기에 참으로 즐겼고 마지막 장을 읽으면서는 눈물을 흘리지 않을 수 없었어요.

그리고 읽기를 다 마치고 나니까, 마치 영화관에 친구들과 같이 갔을 때 막 깔깔대며 웃고 농담을 하다가 영화가 너무나 감동적이어서 극장을 나올 때에는 모두들 숙연해 지고 진지해져서 아무도 실없는 소리를 하지 않던 그런 기분과 같았어요. 참으로 감동적으로 읽었습니다.

읽고서는 이웃에 사는 저보다 연령적으로 훨씬 후배이신 (이화여고 출신) 분에게 빌려드렸습니다.

저에 대한 소개가 늦었군요. 저는 1938년생이고, 이인숙이라고 합니다. 남편은 연합감리교회 목사로서 은퇴했으며 저희는 Rowland Heights에 있는 (L. A.에서 26마일 동쪽) 자그마한 감리교회 목사 은퇴마을에서 살고 있는 사람이에요.

참 반가웠던 것은 상은씨의 글 속에서 박성활 목사님과 마경일 목사님 이름을 읽었을 때에요.

언제고 상은씨를 꼭 뵙고 싶어요. 감사합니다. 축하합니다. 그리고 상은씨, 사랑합니다. 이인숙 올림

추이: 상은씨의 연주를 들으며 이 글을 올립니다.

CJ Thomas

I found Grace Notes to be a wonderful, honest and entertaining memoir. How brave and honest you are!
Your knack for storytelling makes it hard to put the book down.
Your gift in blending turmoil, passion, love and your faith in God creates a very personal and detailed account of your life.

CJ Thomas

Nancy Lichter

Sang, Enjoyed your book so much, loving, honest and touching. I laughed and cried and loved the happy ending. You have a hidden talent please write another.
— Nancy Lichter

Kim Hombrecker

This was sent to my daughter Terry from her friend, Kim Hombrecker

Please tell your Mom that I read her incredible book and it so moved me! I cried and I laughed-what an incredible story she had to tell and I read it in 2 days-I couldn’t put it down!
Kim Hombrecher

Don King

Sang, I couldn’t put your book down. I found it fascinating and inspirational. It is difficult for those of us who grew-up in a relatively peaceful and prosperous environment to understand the hardships of war and being a refugee. And then to go on to attain the heights of your musical career shows true determination. Clearly you must have had divine inspiration. Thank you for sharing your life with us.

— Don King

Dorothy Ralphs

Hi Sang,
I am up to page 269 in your book and have been thoroughly enjoying it, reading it differently than I would if it were written by someone I did not know, thinking about our common beginnings in another country, then leaving our home and all we know for “America”, the home of movie stars, Thunderbird cars, and the excitement movies have filled our young heads with.

I just had to stop reading this morning. As I read about your departure from Korea, your Mom and all your friends saying goodbye! It was just too much, I found myself bawling so the pages blurred and I couldn’t read any more. It brought back that day when I stood on the deck of the ship, my Mom and Dad and all my sisters, my cousins and friends all wandering about, trying to be cheerful and give good advice! All I wanted to do was cry and hug everyone. Suddenly realizing I might never see any of them again. When we left I did have a wonderful new husband with whom I was madly in love, but there was no way he could comfort me from the thought of never seeing my Mom again. When the ship broke away from the Harbour and gradually my family became smaller and smaller and I couldn’t see them any more I thought I would just die. I think Boris thought he would never shut down the well of tears, I sobbed and sobbed at that railing, knowing I could not change my mind or do anything about my decision .

Now I have been here 50 years! But for some reason the remembrance of that day always brings me to tears. I shall continue on your saga with great interest because I will next be entering your experiences when you first come to America.
Dorothy Ralphs