Eimear McBride Yeong-hye and her husband are ordinary people - dutiful wife and mild-mannered office worker. One day, prompted by grotesque recurring nightmares, Yeong-hye decides to become a vegetarian.
But in South Korea, where vegetarianism is almost unheard-of and societal mores are strictly obeyed, it is a shocking act of subversion. Yeong-hye's passive rebellion rapidly manifests in ever more bizarre and frightening forms, from sexual sadism to attempted suicide, and in increasingly erotic and unhinged artworks, as all the while she spirals further into her fantasies.
Disturbing and beautiful by turns, The Vegetarian is a revelatory novel about modern day South Korea; a tale of shame, desire and our faltering attempts to understand others.