Lemon by Kwon Yeo-sun

Lemon is a Korean literary mystery novella about the impact one murdered teenager has on others around her, as the aftermath is shown from three perspectives. Around the World Cup of 2002, Hae-on was murdered, and the case was never solved. Her sister, her classmate, and her friend all feel the impact of her death in the following years, but it’s clear it holds a different place in each of their lives.

The novella is told in short sections in which you have to work out who is talking from context, and I liked the twisty, not always clear nature of the narrative, with some of the later sections shedding more light on what came before. The mystery at the heart of the book is interesting, but perhaps more interesting is the importance of class and how different characters are treated, especially as Hae-on’s sister discovers more about the boy who was originally accused of the murder.

This book is a fleeting thing, showing the aftermath of the murder of a high school student and the different perspectives people can have on one person. I liked the fragmentary structure and atmosphere and the novella tells a gripping story that leaves you thinking.