Dear Leader

Author(s): Jang Jin-Sung

Biography | Featured Titles

'The General will now enter the room' Everyone turns to stone. Not moving my head, I direct my eyes to a point halfway up the archway where Kim Jong-Il's face will soon appear. As North Korea's State Poet Laureate, Jang Jin-Sung led a charmed life. With food provisions, a travel pass, access to strictly censored information and audiences with Kim Jong-Il himself, his life in Pyongyang seemed safe and secure. But this privileged existence was about to be shattered. When a strictly forbidden magazine that he lent to a friend goes missing, Jang Jin-Sung must flee for his life. Dear Leader is an unprecedented insight into the world's most secretive country, as well as the incredible true story of the author's flight to freedom. This very rare, first-hand account reveals the truth behind the propaganda and exposes a side of North Korea which has never before been seen.


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A rare and extraordinary glimpse into the reality of life in North Korea, by a member of the powerful elite

"Jang Jin-sung's book is something even rarer [than previous work on N Korea] - an expose of the workings of a totalitarian state by a member of its inner circle." Guardian "Jang Jin-sung demonstrates unique insight into the lifestyle and power structures of North Korea's top elite. The tale, ending with his own dramatic escape, depicts Jang's gradual metamorphosis from total conformist, to serious doubter, to enemy of the state. Dear Leader is a compelling story told with the elegance and poetry of the Orient: a page-turner that will change the way the world sees this enigmatic country." -- Susanne Koelbl Der Spiegel

Jang Jin-sung is a former court poet, and propagandist, for North Korean leader Kim Jong-il. Since leaving the country he has become a bestselling author and media sensation. He has been awarded the Rex Warner Literary Prize and read his poetry at London's Cultural Olympiad in 2012. He now lives in South Korea and is Editor-in-Chief of New Focus International, an authoritative website reporting on North Korea (

General Fields

  • : 9781846044199
  • : Ebury Press
  • : Rider & Co
  • : May 2014
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : 352
  • : Jang Jin-Sung
  • : Hardback