I Want to Die but I Want to Eat Tteokbokki, by Baek Se-hee

nadineramdass's review

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challenging dark emotional hopeful informative inspiring reflective sad medium-paced


I really liked and related to this book. However, many of the challenges the author discussed with her therapist are pushed aside as being self-esteem issues rather than issues that are a product of society and the pressure we have to be functioning successful people. There are somethings that are out of her hands and while building self-esteem might help reduce the impact, it won't change the situation completely or resolve the contributing factors of the issue. To me, this book is about how trying to meet societal expectations can leave you feeling drained and self conscious. I also liked the emotionless way some of the book is written in. The book is about someone that over analyzes everything and even in this book she is analyzing her therapy sessions and interactions. It's clear that even at the end of the book, she is still learning. This is someone who doesn't seem to feel their emotions but rather over analyzes their reactions and interactions to understand themselve and the world. 

jamieruwen's review

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Hate to say it, but this one was pretty meh for me. The therapist seems incompetent at best - doesn't hone in on why their client is so nervous they forget what was said in everyday conversation, doesn't communicate side effects of medication, chalks everything up to self-esteem issues, ignores her client's inkling that she may rely on alcohol too much to navigate social situations. I liked one therapeutic insight: Baek's propensity for extreme binary thinking - "if i can do x, that means i'm allowed to exist, and if i can't do x, that must mean i'm worthless". I wish the therapist would show more insights phrased as questions instead of dry statements, it is more helpful to lead someone to a conclusion than it is to just say what you think is true. 

All in all this book is just very Cognitive Behavioural Therapy and doesn't really think outside the boundaries of that. If you've already done CBT I highly doubt you will get much out of it. 

p.s. I think the translation might be a bit shit. it's very stilted and emotionless.

bloupibloupreads's review against another edition

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emotional slow-paced


 something about this book just didn’t hook me on. i didn’t related to the main character at all, i mean, i know it wasn’t the goal of this book but while reading stories about mental health i like to recognize myself through the book. it wasn’t really the case in this one even though we had a lot in common but the way the author explained and put everything in words just didn’t click with me. i’m sure at 99% that the way it’s written was the reason why. the back and forth between the psychiatrist and the character was… meh?? i don’t know, i like the idea but i think it wasn’t well done and something was missing. overall a forgettable book.

mainareads's review

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i will probably be back later im just going through a fiction only phase 

diananana's review against another edition

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related to some of the topics it talks about, specifically self esteem and self worth, but unfortunately did not like the structure of the book, how it’s just basically transcripts of her therapy sessions

freethefrican's review

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emotional hopeful informative reflective sad medium-paced


I can’t explain it but I think this is one of those books you’ll only like if you can relate to its very specific and personal subject matter. Histrionic personality and dysthymia aren’t spoken about a lot when we talk about personality disorders and the different ways depression can manifest so I appreciated this POV. 
I can’t say much about the therapist’s responses but I do wonder about them (but at least she penned a disclaimer at the end with regards to her management style and choices). Also, I did not like the essays(?) at the end and felt they were unnecessary and out of place.

sarahsbooklife's review against another edition

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relaxing slow-paced


It was an interesting book. There were some parts that I found myself connecting and sympathising with. 

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mooncxrx's review against another edition

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reflective slow-paced


another book i thought i would like that i just did not connect with... i guess i have pondered my own mental state for too long to find any big new revelations in this book. it is an easy read though and the author's reflections at the end had some nice and relatable parts

daisylknight's review

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emotional informative reflective slow-paced


It was an okay book just some parts felt clunky and i feel like it didn't really go anywhere