I just finished reading this book, Your Republic is Calling You, about a North Korean spy who lives for two decades in South Korea, awaiting his orders. He only hears from the North once, early on, to murder someone blahblah, but then he just goes about his way and lives a normal life, goes to college, gets married, has a good job, raises a child....and then he gets the key message from the North that translates to mean it's time to come home to the mother land.
The book is focused on his life on that one day when he gets the message, with flashbacks to his days in training, college, etc. It introduces other people in his life, other spies, family members, side stories...it flows really well for touching on so many things, though I have to admit that sometimes I wasn't sure who belonged to which story. I think part of that might be due to me translating the Korean names into Korean names of kids I used to teach there...you know, to make it more personal to me, I guess. It was a little slow at first - this helped keep me interested.
What I most enjoyed about this book was that he spoke of places I have actually been - like Gangwon Province-we LIVED there! And he wrote about Lotte World - hello, copycat Disneyland-been there. And the Namdaemun market - love it there.
It's an interesting story - it wasn't my favorite, but a good story nonetheless. I don't know that I would even strongly suggest anyone read it, unless you lived in South Korea and want to reminisce, but it's a good story to think about.
And think about it I did...and I told Andrew about it and we discussed how weird that would be to know someone for a long time and then find out they are a spy.
And then we realized - there are a lot of people we know who are probably spies.
A lot of people we know are actually spies.
We were able to easily identify some suspicious behaviors and tell-tale signs in a LOT of people we know!
It was a little surprising to discover this...but it is what it is...
I won't call you all out...but just know that we're on to you.
We won't tell anyone (yet) - but we KNOW.
Just know that we know, and that's all. When you go back to your homeland with whatever secrets you have collected, we will not be shocked.
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