Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West

Escape from Camp 14: One Man's Remarkable Odyssey from North Korea to Freedom in the West


By (author) Blaine Harden

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  • Publisher: Penguin Books
  • Format: Paperback | 210 pages
  • Dimensions: 127mm x 193mm x 23mm | 181g
  • Publication date: 26 March 2013
  • ISBN 10: 0143122916
  • ISBN 13: 9780143122913
  • Edition statement: Reprint
  • Illustrations note: black & white illustrations, maps, black & white plates
  • Sales rank: 4,547

Product description

The heartwrenching "New York Times" bestseller about the only known person born inside a North Korean prison camp to have escaped North Korea's political prison camps have existed twice as long as Stalin's Soviet gulags and twelve times as long as the Nazi concentration camps. No one born and raised in these camps is known to have escaped. No one, that is, except Shin Dong-hyuk. In "Escape From Camp 14," Blaine Harden unlocks the secrets of the world's most repressive totalitarian state through the story of Shin's shocking imprisonment and his astounding getaway. Shin knew nothing of civilized existence--he saw his mother as a competitor for food, guards raised him to be a snitch, and he witnessed the execution of his mother and brother. The late "Dear Leader" Kim Jong Il was recognized throughout the world, but his country remains sealed as his third son and chosen heir, Kim Jong Eun, consolidates power. Few foreigners are allowed in, and few North Koreans are able to leave. North Korea is hungry, bankrupt, and armed with nuclear weapons. It is also a human rights catastrophe. Between 150,000 and 200,000 people work as slaves in its political prison camps. These camps are clearly visible in satellite photographs, yet North Korea's government denies they exist. Harden's harrowing narrative exposes this hidden dystopia, focusing on an extraordinary young man who came of age inside the highest security prison in the highest security state. "Escape from Camp 14" offers an unequalled inside account of one of the world's darkest nations. It is a tale of endurance and courage, survival and hope.

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Author information

Blaine Harden is a reporter for PBS's "FRONTLINE" and a contributor to the "Economist," and has served as "The Washington Post"'s bureau chief in East Asia, Eastern Europe, and Africa. He is the author of "Africa: Dispatches from a Fragile Continent" and "A River Lost: The Life and Death of the Columbia." He lives in Seattle, Washington.

Review quote

"If you have a soul, you will be changed forever by Blaine Harden's "Escape from Camp 14 . . . "Harden masterfully allows us to know Shin, not as a giant but as a man, struggling to understand what was done to him and what he was forced to do to survive. By doing so, "Escape from Camp 14" stands as a searing indictment of a depraved regime and a tribute to all those who cling to their humanity in the face of evil."--Mitchell Zuckoff, "New York"" Times "bestselling author of "Lost in Shangri-La "