Considering our papers are chukker full of stories out of both Koreas this book is one you may want to put on your pile of “to read” books.
I was surprised and shocked by the authors experiences while living in Japan after WWll. I thought I knew about the prejudices and difficulties in the post war Japanese society but my eyes were opened wide by his narrative.
“Half-Korean, half-Japanese, Masaji Ishikawa has spent his whole life feeling like a man without a country. This feeling only deepened when his family moved from Japan to North Korea when Ishikawa was just thirteen years old, and unwittingly became members of the lowest social caste. His father, himself a Korean national, was lured to the new Communist country by promises of abundant work, education for his children, and a higher station in society. But the reality of their new life was far from utopian.”
In this memoir translated from the original Japanese, Ishikawa candidly recounts his tumultuous upbringing and the brutal thirty-six years he spent living under a crushing totalitarian regime, as well as the challenges he faced repatriating to Japan after barely escaping North Korea with his life. A River in Darkness is not only a shocking portrait of life inside the country but a testament to the dignity–and indomitable nature–of the human spirit.” Amazon Prime book posting