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Happy girl from North Korea discovered the truth about her country

The Girl with Seven Names - Hyeonseo Lee, John David Mann

The first 40% of the book is about her childhood, before she turned 18.

 

She was happy and don't know much about the world. Which is like most people in North Korea, with government spreading misinformation and limited real information from reaching people. 

 

At least she has a powerful government to blame to not getting things right. 

 

Just got to the part that she run across the river into China for a mini holiday before she turned 18. 

 

As a teenager, she couldn't comprehend the trouble she would be in if she is found missing. 

 

Very good read. Give a good insight into of growing up in a middle class family in North Korea. 

 

A girl born in a loving family

 

The family is a straight one. But her mother is kind of rebellious already by being forced into her first marriage, had a daughter, and divorce the first husband to marry her first love.

 

Why she run

She run to China because North Korea treat children comparatively nice. No corporal punishment. Just need to do a lot of praise the leader songs and dance.

 

She run because she want to have the freedom to run to China before she turned to an adult has to bear the responsibility as an adult. She did. And she had ice cream and fun and stay a few weeks. Only to find that she was found out to be lost and could not go back.

 

That the beginning of her exile in China

Near misses are there too. Almost trapped as she is young and pretty. 

She is fortunate that she had learned Chinese and could now practice enough to claim to be Korea Chinese. 

 

Working at a restaurant is good. But she need ID. Also got force into marriage like her mother. She was a runaway bride.

 

Bought a real ID that is no longer in use. 

 

Now she could work legally, with a new name.

 

The next step is to find her way to South Korea. 


The story is incredible yet believable. There are real people, not completely good or nasty. Just a mix of decision and common human nature that led her to this point.

 

It is good to find the truth about her country rather living a lie. But she would not find out the lie if she is not out. 


Irony.