A Thousand Miles to Freedom: My Escape from North Korea by Eunsun Kim

By Eunsun Kim

Eunsun Kim used to be born in North Korea, the most secretive and oppressive international locations within the smooth international. As a baby Eunsun enjoyed her country...despite her institution box journeys to public executions, day-by-day self-criticism periods, and the expanding gnaw of starvation because the country-wide famine escalated.

By the time she used to be 11 years outdated, Eunsun's father and grandparents had died of hunger, and Eunsun used to be at risk of an analogous. eventually, her mom determined to flee North Korea with Eunsun and her sister, no longer realizing that they have been embarking on a trip that may take them 9 lengthy years to accomplish. sooner than ultimately attaining South Korea and freedom, Eunsun and her relatives could dwell homeless, fall into the palms of chinese language human traffickers, continue to exist a North Korean exertions camp, and go the deserts of Mongolia on foot.

Now, Eunsun is sharing her awesome tale to offer voice to the tens of hundreds of thousands of North Koreans nonetheless discomfort in silence. informed with grace and braveness, her memoir is a riveting exposé of North Korea's totalitarian regime and, eventually, a testomony to the energy and resilience of the human spirit.

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Keumsun took the train and went to Chongjin to stay with an aunt. Mom needed some time to recover her strength. The neighbors worried about her deteriorating health, especially since it was less than five degrees Fahrenheit outside. They said that the ghost of my father would come back to try to take my mother with him. You always had to be wary of ghosts in North Korea. There were plenty of them, and I was always very afraid of them when I was little. * * * It was during these last few weeks of winter 1997–1998 that my life took a sharp turn.

On that cold December night in 1997, when I was eleven years old, I knew that I was going to die before even reaching adolescence. Suddenly, a muffled sound reached my ears. Was I dreaming? Or was I having a nightmare? I half opened one of my eyes. A dark silhouette appeared before me, its shadow growing larger and larger. Frightened, I lifted myself up, only to see that this shadowy figure looked familiar. Suddenly, I realized it was my mother, along with Keumsun right behind her! I felt a rush of adrenaline jolt through my body and my anguish started to dissipate.

This building is bound to collapse,” all the neighbors used to say. In spite of everything, for the first few years of the 1990s, I generally felt pretty content. Nothing made me happier than to have my father pick me up after school. Some days, he would take me to the movies, using tickets he had gotten ahold of as a result of his connections at work. He worked at a weapons factory called “January 20th,” named in commemoration of the day that Kim Il-sung, the founder of North Korea, paid it a personal visit.

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