Synopses & Reviews
The South Korean runaway bestseller, debut author Baek Sehee's intimate therapy memoir, as recommended by BTS.
PSYCHIATRIST: So how can I help you?
ME: I don't know, I'm - what's the word - depressed? Do I have to go into detail?
Baek Sehee is a successful young social media director at a publishing house when she begins seeing a psychiatrist about her - what to call it? - depression? She feels persistently low, anxious, endlessly self-doubting, but also highly judgmental of others. She hides her feelings well at work and with friends, performing the calmness her lifestyle demands. The effort is exhausting, overwhelming, and keeps her from forming deep relationships. This can't be normal. But if she's so hopeless, why can she always summon a yen for her favorite street food: the hot, spicy rice cake, tteokbokki? Is this just what life is like?
Recording her dialogues with her psychiatrist over a twelve-week period, and expanding on each session with her own reflective micro-essays, Baek begins to disentangle the feedback loops, knee-jerk reactions, and harmful behaviors that keep her locked in a cycle of self-abuse. Part memoir, part self-help book, I Want to Die but I Want to Eat Tteokbokki is a book to keep close and to reach for in times of darkness. It will appeal to anyone who has ever felt alone or unjustified in their everyday despair.
“With candor and humor, Baek offers readers and herself resonant moments of empathy.” Booklist
"Candid…heartfelt…Sehee's mission to normalize conversation about mental illness is an admirable one." Publishers Weekly
"Honest and authentic throughout….A sincere attempt at self-discovery that will resonate with young people who suffer from similar forms of depression and anxiety" Library Journal
"At once personal and universal, this book is about finding a path to awareness, understanding, and wisdom." Kirkus Reviews
About the Author
Born in 1990, Baek Sehee studied creative writing in university before working for five years at a publishing house. For ten years, she received psychiatric treatment for dysthymia (persistent mild depression), which became the subject of her essays, and then I Want to Die, but I Want to Eat Tteokbokki, books one and two. Her favorite food is tteokbokki, and she lives with her rescue dog Jaram.