Escape from Camp 14

Blaine Harden

4 based on 417 ratings & 48 reviews on Goodreads.com
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30 July 2015
9780330519540
288 pages
Synopsis

'This is a story unlike any other' Barbara Demick, author of Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea

Now a major documentary film

Twenty-seven years ago, Shin Dong-hyuk was born inside Camp 14, one of five sprawling political prisons in the mountains of North Korea. Located about fifty-five miles north of Pyongyang, the labor camp is a 'complete control district,' a no-exit prison where the only sentence is life.

No one born in Camp 14 or in any North Korean political prison camp has escaped. No one except Shin. This is his story.

A gripping, terrifying biography with a searing sense of place, Escape from Camp 14 by journalist Blaine Harden will unlock, through Shin, a dark and secret nation, taking readers to a place they have never before been allowed to go.

‘This is a story unlike any other because Shin is one of the few, if not only, long-term prisoners to have escaped from the North Korean gulag. It is most harrowing not only because it is true, but because the conditions it describes persist to 2011 in North Korea, where a vast gulag is home to hundreds of thousands of slave laborers, including children bred in captivity, like Shin. More so than any other book on North Korea, including my own, Escape from Camp 14 exposes the cruelty that is the underpinning of Kim Jong Il’s regime. Blaine Harden, a veteran foreign correspondent from The Washington Post, tells this story masterfully. Harden doesn’t flinch from the darker side of the story. He takes straight-on questions about Shin’s credibility and explains methodically how he went about corroborating his story. He doesn’t try to make Shin – a difficult and damaged person – more likeable. The integrity of this book, shines through on every page’ Barbara Demick, author of Nothing to Envy: Ordinary Lives in North Korea

‘Harrowing . . . Harden’s account of Shin’s extraordinary, perilous journey through North Korea and into China (which has a history of sending asylum seekers back to North Korea) and later to South Korea is gripping stuff . . . bearing witness will be Shin’s legacy’ Daily Mail

‘Harden sheds light on the horrors of North Korea, with a gripping account of the story of Shin In Geun’ Financial Times - Favourite Books of 2012