“[A] masterfully realized debut . . . One of its most impressive achievements is the rendering of main character Gi, who is brought powerfully and beautifully to life . . . Jones depicts both the innocence of his protagonist and the pathologies and violence of the South Korean underworld with great skill and emotional power. VERDICT Impossible to put down, this work is important reading for anyone who cares about the power of literature to engage the world and speak its often frightening truths.”
“Dramatic . . . [A] well-paced story.”
“If reading The Orphan Master’s Son piqued your interest in North Korea, this one’s for you. Jones’ debut—which is very different from Johnson’s recent bestseller—depicts the harsh life of women in North Korea, and then the even harsher realities after they are smuggled out of the country and sold into the sex trade in Seattle. Gritty and dark.”
—The Bookcase (BookPage blog)
“All Woman and Springtime is a lovely novel brimming with heartache and hope in equal measure. Jones has a gift for empathy as well as a keen sense of justice. This book will open your eyes, break your heart, and then mend it again.”
—Tayari Jones, author of Silver Sparrow
“One of the most absorbing, chilling, beautifully written and important novels I’ve read in many years.”
"Debut novelist Jones conducts a compelling psychological tour of life inside the socially and politically restrictive borders of North Korea via the poignant stories of two young girls on the cusp of womanhood. . . . This tale of female friendship is distinguished by its illuminating glimpse into the arcane intricacies of both an ancient and a modern culture. Guaranteed to appeal to fans of Memoirs of a Geisha (1997) and the novels of Lisa See."
"Riveting and utterly compelling to the very end."
"All Woman and Springtime is so complex and beautiful that it's difficult to believe it's author Brandon W. Jones' debut. Jones tackles the land behind the Iron Curtain, North Korea, as he weaves the chilling tale of a girl named Gi who grew up in a forced-labor camp. Jones' wonderful prose, intricate characters and heartbreaking story make this book a must-read for us."
—She Knows, Book Lounge
All Woman and Springtime is a story with immense depth and heart that follows two young friends through the ragged frays of childhood into a violent and tragic young adulthood of prostitution, abuse and drug addiction. This story will sink its teeth into your soul and not let go. It is a gripping masterpiece of literature that will haunt me for a long time to come. Be prepared for a powerful read."
—Jessica, BookPeople, Austin
"A gripping novel about two North Korean girls forced into the international sex trade."
—Oprah.com's 18 Books to Watch for May 2012