An American missionary crosses into North Korea with “treacherous” religious materials on his hard drive. What follows is a 15-year sentence of hard labor and a life of deprivation and indoctrination. Throughout his ordeal, Bae maintains his faith and does what Jesus would do, trying to love his tormentors.
The glimpses of prison life in the hermit kingdom give this book much of its flavor: the absurdity of labor tasks; the forced TV watching; the forgivable ignorance of the guards. It’s a book about faith, but heathens can enjoy it too. The insanity of Kim Jong-un’s Korea is gripping stuff.