The Orphan Master's Son
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “A daring and remarkable novel.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times Pak Jun Do is the haunted son of a lost mother—a singer “stolen” to Pyongyang—and an influential father who runs a work camp for orphans. Superiors in the state soon recognize the boy’s loyalty... show more
NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER “A daring and remarkable novel.”—Michiko Kakutani, The New York Times Pak Jun Do is the haunted son of a lost mother—a singer “stolen” to Pyongyang—and an influential father who runs a work camp for orphans. Superiors in the state soon recognize the boy’s loyalty and keen instincts. Considering himself “a humble citizen of the greatest nation in the world,” Jun Do rises in the ranks. He becomes a professional kidnapper who must navigate the shifting rules, arbitrary violence, and baffling demands of his Korean overlords in order to stay alive. Driven to the absolute limit of what any human being could endure, he boldly takes on the treacherous role of rival to Kim Jong Il in an attempt to save the woman he loves, Sun Moon, a legendary actress “so pure, she didn’t know what starving people looked like.” In this epic, critically acclaimed tour de force, Adam Johnson provides a riveting portrait of a world rife with hunger, corruption, and casual cruelty but also camaraderie, stolen moments of beauty, and love. “Gripping . . . Deftly blending adventure, surreal comedy and Casablanca-style romance, the novel takes readers on a jolting ride through an Orwellian landscape of dubious identity and dangerous doublespeak.”—San Jose Mercury News “This is a novel worth getting excited about. . . . Adam Johnson has taken the papier-mâché creation that is North Korea and turned it into a real and riveting place that readers will find unforgettable.”—The Washington Post “[A] brilliant and timely novel.”—The Wall Street Journal “Remarkable and heartbreaking . . . To [the] very short list of exceptional novels that also serve a humanitarian purpose The Orphan Master’s Son must now be added.”—The New Republic “A triumph of imagination . . . [Grade:] A.”—Entertainment Weekly “A spellbinding saga of subverted identity and an irrepressible love.”—VogueLook for special features inside. Join the Circle for author chats and more.
Publish date: August 7th 2012
Publisher: Random House Trade Paperbacks
Pages no: 456
Edition language: English
Pak Jun Do is an almost-orphan living in North Korea. His ability to shift his identity to conform to the unpredictable whims of the Korean government helps him stay alive, but there is only so much that one person can take. When Jun Do’s family is put in danger, he risks his life to help them escap...
DNFed at page 50. This book was boring as hell. Dry. A little rushed. And it's like it was written for someone fluent in North Korean culture (which I am not). So many terms I didn't understand. So many places I had to look up. And at times I was confused, thinking the main character was from Chin...
BLUF: I would not recommend this book simply because it is monotonous; however, I enjoyed the (fictional or not) insight into a country much different than our own."Ga thought about reminding the dear leader that they lived in a land where people had been trained to accept any reality presented to t...
Wow. Where to start. This is certainly one of the best contemporary novels I've read in at least a decade. It's like nothing I've read before, or a unique amalgamation of genres I haven't seen combined. It begins very much in the vein of the Odyssey, except the protagonist, Jun Do, can't be said to ...
This is a difficult book to review, so I hasten to add that this may not be the longest review! Never were these words truer.... ....because I'll admit, I spent quite a few sleepless hours the other night trying to figure it out! But yet, I still feel I'm missing something. I spent a large por...