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Pyongyang: A Journey in North Korea Paperback – Mar 31 2007


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Drawn & Quarterly; 1 edition (March 31 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1897299214
  • ISBN-13: 978-1897299210
  • Product Dimensions: 21.4 x 15.5 x 1.2 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 295 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #26,442 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)


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Customer Reviews

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Most helpful customer reviews

Format: Paperback
Pyongyang is a simultaneously funny, sad and engaging story. The artwork is wonderfully simple and and evocative of the grim country, but it's well balanced by the informed and witty commentary.

The one negative review here faults the book for its attitude and lack of objectivity, but misses an important point: Delisle isn't a journalist. He's just a person there observing. There are plenty of good serious books about North Korea (Bruce Cuming's North Korea is a great short introduction), but Pyongyang is a regular man's view. A poignant and very funny view.
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Delisle's graphic novel is a well made and informed piece of work. It is regrettably short (as most graphic novels are because the pages fly by), but worth the read. If however, you are quite familiar with North Korean society already, this work won't add too much to your understanding of the place except for an interesting account of an animator working there. All the descriptions of stone faced traffic directors and smiling children performing in unison are not new. In sum, the book is a good introduction to the country, and to someone familiar the book is, as a personal account, still valuable, .
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By M. Elaine Hamilton on Feb. 11 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very witty and essential reading for anyone and in particular for those visiting the DPRK. He is his own pun and this makes it charming.
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4 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Mike Tancsa on Oct. 22 2006
Format: Hardcover
I first read this book last winter and had an awesomely fun time reading it and recently half read it looking over the shoulder of my wife as she read it for the first time in bed. I have traveled a bit in my life and had been to totalitarian states like Syria, East Germany and the Soviet Union so many of the physical monstrosities rang familiar. However, even in those places I didn't meet the "I love this kool-aid the dear leader allows us to drink" mentality that he ran into in NK. Unlike the other reviewer of this book, I appreciated the perspective of someone working in another country as opposed to someone just passing through. Where the previous reviewer was upset about him trying to control his laughter at the friendship museum, I too could barely contain my laughter reading those scenes. Comparing his "true believer" handlers to "over zealous soccer fans" is incredibly inappropriate. Are lunatic cults limited to other cultures? Of course not. We have plenty of our own. This should be read as someone's travelogue... a travel log doesn't necessarily have profound insights on every page... It's a fun book plain and simple. If you are looking for "Focult in North Korea" no, its not for you, but if you want a really fun and interesting read this book is for you!
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