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The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector's Story

Lu par : Josie Dunn
Durée : 10 h et 48 min
5 out of 5 stars (1 notation)

Prix : 14,68 €

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Description

An extraordinary insight into life under one of the world's most ruthless and secretive dictatorships - and the story of one woman's terrifying struggle to avoid capture/repatriation and guide her family to freedom.

As a child growing up in North Korea, Hyeonseo Lee was one of millions trapped by a secretive and brutal communist regime. Her home on the border with China gave her some exposure to the world beyond the confines of the Hermit Kingdom, and, as the famine of the 1990s struck, she began to wonder, question and realise that she had been brainwashed her entire life.

Given the repression, poverty and starvation she witnessed, surely her country could not be, as she had been told "the best on the planet".

Aged 17, she decided to escape North Korea. She could not have imagined that it would be 12 years before she was reunited with her family.

She could not return, since rumours of her escape were spreading, and she and her family could incur the punishments of the government authorities - involving imprisonment, torture and possible public execution.

Hyeonseo instead remained in China and rapidly learned Chinese in an effort to adapt and survive. And 12 years and two lifetimes later, she would return to the North Korean border in a daring mission to spirit her mother and brother to South Korea on one of the most arduous, costly and dangerous journeys imaginable.

This is the unique story not only of Hyeonseo's escape from the darkness into the light but also of her coming of age and education and the resolve she found to rebuild her life - not once but twice - first in China then in South Korea. Strong, brave and eloquent, this memoir is a triumph of her remarkable spirit.

©2015 Hyeonseo Lee (P)2015 HarperCollins Publishers Limited

Critiques

"The most riveting TED talk ever." (Oprah)
"This is a powerful story of an escapee from North Korea. In the hallowed meeting rooms of the United Nations in New York, ambassadors from North Korea recently sought to shout down stories like this. But these voices will not be silenced. Eventually freedom will be restored. History will vindicate Hyeonseo Lee and those like her for the risks they ran so that their bodies and their minds could be free. And so that we could know the truth." (Michael Kirby, chair of the UN commission on human rights abuses in North Korea)
"When I first met Hyeonseo Lee, the unflinching manner in which she told her story was inspirational. She experienced hunger, coldness, fear, terror, threats and pursuit. All this she had to endure, simply for being a North Korean refugee. But the one thing that she held on to was her humanity, ever stronger as she continuously sublimated her hardships into hope. This is a sad and beautiful story of a girl who could not even keep her name, yet overcome all with the identity of what it is to be human." (Jang Jin-sung, author of Dear Leader: Poet, Spy, Escapee - A Look Inside North Korea)

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Notations

Global

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Il n'y a pas encore de critique disponible pour ce titre.
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  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Lucy
  • 13/11/2017

The grit it must have taken

Hyeonseo Lee has taken courage to a new level in her amazing story. I so appreciated the look into the hidden society of North Korea. Ms. Lee exposes all facets of life there as she tells her remarkable story with its convoluted struggle for escape. We grow with her as the story progresses from childhood innocence to a calculating, determined young woman taking enormous risks to become free. I would like to thank her for also taking the risk of writing her memoir. It not only inspires, but it reminds us what a long and costly road freedom can be, something we in the US should never take for granted.

9 sur 9 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Daryl
  • 16/07/2017

A Love for a Dictatorship?

I was incredulous upon starting this compelling book. How could someone love a country like North Korea, where simply speaking out against the government could be cause for a death sentence?
And yet, it is very clear that Hyeonseo Lee does love her country, for the life she lived there when times were good.
In riveting prose, she describes her life in North Korea as a child, who her parents were, what was good and what was tragic. A trip across the river into China was risky business, but as a teenager she went across to experience the world and has not been able to return to the country of her birth since then - nearly twenty years ago. She describes her actions with the benefit of hindsight, how she could be naive and cruel and otherwise hurtful to those around her. It is clear that she deeply regrets some of her actions, particularly as a teenager toward her father and brother. But in a country like North Korea, second chances are few, and the opportunities to make amends are few and far between. Hyeonseo Lee clearly carries a fighter's spirit, a lot of regret, and yet hope for the country of her birth.
As others have stated, another narrator would have been a better choice. As the author has no connection whatsoever to the UK, having a British narrator was quite jarring. She was good at her performance, but an American or Asian narrator would have been a better choice.
Overall, well worth your time and credit.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 26/06/2017

ok but....

I'm not yet finished with the book but wanted to say that I feel the author made one major mistake. That is...having a person with a strong English accent be the narrator of a book about a young girl/woman from North Korea. It simply doesn't make sense and takes away from the authenticity of the story. I would rather have had a person with an Asian accent tell the story because it would have been more natural to the nature of the story. Just my 2 cents.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Grace
  • 26/09/2015

Five stars

Would you listen to The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector's Story again? Why?

I hardly ever give a book 5 stars and this is my first review but this book is unbelievable, I could barely put it down. This book is a page turner and even though you know the outcome, your heart pounds as you read her journey and that of her family. It is sad at times but overall, an empowering story of strength.

4 sur 4 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Alex
  • 23/09/2017

Fascinating story, inadequate narration.

What aspect of Josie Dunn’s performance would you have changed?

The Korean pronunciations were wrong and unintelligible. Korean is not a difficult language to pronounce; research should have been done.

Any additional comments?

For titles with significant foreign names or vocab, find a narrator who speaks a bit of the language in question.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • SF
  • 18/12/2016

Great!

Where does The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector's Story rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

SPOILERS: Since living in South Korea (ROK), I've grown an affinity for books on North Korea (DPRK). This is a decent book on the subject. It doesn't give a lot of detail on life in North Korea during the "difficult times" but the author describes scenes and memories no child should.

Even Lee's escape from North Korea isn't a big deal. She simply tells a border guard she's going across. It was completely unplanned. Her escape from China to Shanghai was also uneventful. Lee just takes a flight. There are others who have much more grueling escapes. However, there is no doubt that it is an absolute challenge to do what she did and there is nothing to take away from that!

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Girl with Seven Names: A North Korean Defector's Story?

SPOILER: The author describing the man that hit his head after riding under the train and cracking his skull; just unimaginable but so nonchalant for the people at the time.

What three words best describe Josie Dunn’s performance?

Distracting, not researched

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

How far would you go for family?

Any additional comments?

The British accent on Dunn's performance is somewhat distracting as an American listener. It is very strong and nothing that I would expect a North Korean to sound like. It slightly takes away from the story.

The other issue is that the producers must of have done little research into how to pronounce the names in the book. Having lived in Seoul, Shanghai and traveled through Laos, dated a Laotian; it is mind-numbing to listen to half of these simple pronunciations.

I am no stickler for languages, but the names are so simple. The reader even gets the author's name wrong; pronouncing it Yeonseo with a "y" instead of Hyeonseao with an "hy". I mean: that's the author's name, how do you not research how to say that?!

Other names that I can remember that were pronounced incorrectly: Pyongyang, Harbin (city in China), Laos( The country had no "s" sound, although the author pronounced the language as "Lao" instead of Laotian, the normal nomenclature, but mispronounced the country.) Vientiane (The capital of Laos). She did however pronounce Shanghai correctly, perhaps because of her British accent of a short "ah" sound to shang.

All of that really took me out of the story from time to time. The author also mocks male characters, usually "bad" ones that are Korean or Chinese military guards or police. These accents are borderline cockney and just bizarre. She also mocks an American boyfriend of Lee's and that is just awful.

So, in short, at least as an American, the strong British accent just really seems wrong and does take away from the story from time to time.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Melinda Ecker
  • 17/09/2018

Incite and Intrigue In North And South Korea

Such a riveting, well written and wonderfully narrated true tale of life and it’s dangers in North Korea. Such a brave and determined young girl, to escape North Korea and then return for her family! There are not many books that “I can’t quit reading” but this was one, for sure!

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kathryn Galloway
  • 30/06/2017

important and entertaining

so moving. and humbling. and hard to believe what someone else, my age, was living and dealing with as I lead my life so freely in another world.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Daniela Cortes
  • 09/10/2015

One of the greatest books I've ever read

The story of people from North Korea is outstanding. It is hard to believe that at this present time there are still countries run by dictators.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kaycee
  • 12/05/2017

Narrator should have been Korean

The book was very interesting, dramatic, thought-provoking, and inspiring. The only thing that could have been improved would have been to use a narrator with a Korean accent. It was distracting to me to be envisioning Hyeonseo going through all of her experiences, but hearing it through a British accent. The narrator was very good - I would listen to anything else she read.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Kunde
  • 12/11/2017

Extremely moving and captivating

I kept eager to know what would happen next, all the way to the very end. This story sparked a deeper interest in the writers' country's history. It captivated me and literally moved me to tears more than once due to some shocking events and how they were handled. Other events were just beautiful. If I could give both the writer and reader more than five stars, I so would!

1 sur 1 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.