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A journey of the heart and spirit, Ginseng Tango tracks the author's move to South Korea and her involvements with tango, Buddhism, shamanism, acupuncture, and the challenges of being an independent woman in a patriarchal country. The book navigates the struggles between ancient and modern practices, western and eastern ideals, feminism and Confucianism as North Korea launches missiles.

Ginseng Tango

  • "Her narrative weaves, like dancers, in and out of the modern, the ancient, the mystical and boilerplate reality of life in today's Korea....In Ginseng Tango Pallant takes the reader into a place most of us haven't seen and would be challenged to describe if we did." 

    ~ Richmond Magazine

    "An absorbing and life-affirming memoir, Ginseng Tango chronicles Cheryl Pallant's healing journey in a foreign land. The sounds, smells, and tastes of South Korea serve as the backdrop as she navigates the intricate topography of her own spiritual and emotional landscape, and like a skilled tango partner, her perfectly-paced prose pulls you close, then sweeps you off your feet and into the moment. A truly wonderful read." ~ Mark Seely, Stones: Meditations on Human Authenticity

    "A remarkable creative outpouring." 

    ~ Richmond Times Dispatch

    "Pallant's keen eye for details illuminates both her character's inner and outer life, and Ginseng Tango is not only a narrative of plot and character, it is a road map to self-exploration by way of experience and finding one's place in Nature. Humor and irony season the writing and humanize the central character, and the reader cannot help but be impressed. Her descriptions of tango lessons in Korea are as complex and connotative as a French recipe: 'For the duration of the music, every dance reveals a short-lived affair, a courtship, a glimpse of a life lived in union. A sweaty hand meets a warm hand, a forehead tucks against a neck, hips graze, feet commingle.' Tango resurfaces over and again as a symbolic and psychic bridge between the author and her hosts in a brilliantly-written narrative that is more than worthy of your time, attention and thought." 

    ~ Burgess Needle, Thai Comic Books and SIT and CRY: Two Years in the Land of Smiles

    "Cheryl Pallant writes, teaches, dances, and shamans, moving through a Korean social and physical landscape both familiar (because we are all human and all humans live on the same planet) and deeply unfamiliar, being changed by and in turn changing the people she encounters as we all do, exposing by her clear delineation of her waves of orientation and disorientation this dream we call a life." 

    ~ Judy Roitiman, Two: ghazals