Book review of the day: The Girl with Seven Names

This is the end of the series of book reviews. Thank you to all who have contributed so far. I personally and sincerely hope that this exercise has brought some joy and help alike to those who have used it. This is NOT the end of it though. Just the end of the first series. At some point we will start again.

You can still send your book review to [email protected] and we will put it up when series two starts. Probably in the cold of winter.

Please set your submission out with the name of the book, then the author and then describe in your own words what the book is about. Also if you happen to be a commenter please include your username.

Each post is set out as comprehensively as possible with the name of who submitted it, the name of the book and author and a short review in the form of a comment from whoever submitted it.

Todays review came from Gerry


The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector’s Story

by Hyeonseo Lee  (Author),‎ David John  (Contributor)

Gerry said:

This book gripped me from the beginning. It is a harrowing account and an extraordinary insight into life under one of the world’s most ruthless and secretive dictatorships – and the story of one woman’s terrifying struggle to avoid capture/repatriation and guide her family to freedom.

As a child growing up in North Korea, Hyeonseo Lee was one of millions trapped by a secretive and brutal communist regime. Her home on the border with China gave her some exposure to the world beyond the confines of the Hermit Kingdom and, as the famine of the 1990s struck, she began to wonder, question and to realise that she had been brainwashed her entire life. Given the repression, poverty and starvation she witnessed surely her country could not be, as she had been told “the best on the planet”?

Living on her side of the river her family lived in poverty and on the other side the bright lights of a modern and growing Chinese city provided the constant contrast to her dark, stricken life.

Escaping across the frozen river one winter the tale tells of Hyeonseo’s  escape through China, in constant fear of the authorities, smuggled from place to place and continuously changing her name.

After being helped to reach South Korea it was over a decade before she saw her family again. Hyeonseo went on to become an eloquent speaker at the UN on the depredations of the dictator state she escaped from. A stunningly good read.”

 

Amazon said: “An extraordinary insight into life under one of the world’s most ruthless and secretive dictatorships – and the story of one woman’s terrifying struggle to avoid capture/repatriation and guide her family to freedom.”

 

If you have read this book or it reminds you of a story or something then please go ahead and share in the comments section below.



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