Get Literary includes The Island of Sea Women in their “12 Great Reads that Celebrate the Bonds between Women, writing:
There’s nothing like the story of a great friendship that spans decades. Mi-ja and Young-sook are part of a squad of all-female divers in Korea’s Jeju Island. While the two are very different people, it is their bond that helps them survive their dangerous diving job, as well as the ever-changing regimes and wars that affect their lives. A wondrous look at a world of work that few people know, and a fascinating study of friendship in the face of conflict, The Island of Sea Women is sure to engage readers…and make you want to check in on your bestie.
Oprah Magazine names The Island of Sea Women one of 4 of the “Buzziest” new reads of the year:
Off the coast of South Korea lies Jeju, known as Island of the Gods, where women once were the breadwinners—er, sorry: fishwinners. Meet the haenyeo, the guild of female divers who spend their days underwater searching for food to harvest and sell. They might sound like the stuff of myth, but since the 17th century, real-life haenyeo have held their breath and plumbed the seas, fighting off octopuses, sharks, and abalones. Meanwhile, their husbands stayed home and tended to chores and children.