Under the Same Sky: A Memoir of Survival, Hope, and Faith

A searing story of starvation and survival in North Korea, followed by a dramatic escape, rescue by activists and Christian missionaries, and success in the United States thanks to newfound faith and courageInside the hidden and mysterious world of North Korea, Joseph Kim lived a young boy s normal life until he was five Then disaster struck the first wave of the Great FA searing story of starvation and survival in North Korea, followed by a dramatic escape, rescue by activists and Christian missionaries, and success in the United States thanks to newfound faith and courageInside the hidden and mysterious world of North Korea, Joseph Kim lived a young boy s normal life until he was five Then disaster struck the first wave of the Great Famine, a long, terrible ordeal that killed millions, including his father, and sent others, like his mother and only sister, on desperate escape routes into China Alone on the streets, Joseph learned to beg and steal He had nothing but a street hardened survival instinct Finally, in desperation, he too crossed a frozen river to escape to China There a kindly Christian woman took him in, kept him hidden from the authorities, and gave him hope Soon, through an underground network of activists, he was spirited to the American consulate, and became one of just a handful of North Koreans to be brought to the U.S as refugees Joseph knew no English and had never been a good student Yet the kindness of his foster family changed his life He turned a new leaf, became a dedicated student, mastered English, and made it to college, where he is now thriving thanks to his faith and inner strength Under the Same Sky is an unforgettable story of suffering and redemption.
Under the Same Sky A Memoir of Survival Hope and Faith A searing story of starvation and survival in North Korea followed by a dramatic escape rescue by activists and Christian missionaries and success in the United States thanks to newfound faith and

  • Title: Under the Same Sky: A Memoir of Survival, Hope, and Faith
  • Author: Joseph Kim Stephan Talty
  • ISBN: 9780544373174
  • Page: 307
  • Format: Hardcover
  • 1 thought on “Under the Same Sky: A Memoir of Survival, Hope, and Faith”

    1. The writing skill is not 4 star, but much slack is given for that aspect as he has had English for few years, and still struggles. It has only been 6 or 7 years since the change of emigrating from North Korea thru China has occurred for this very young man. Much of the book is year by year, no- month by month of his life from the time he was 5 years old.So many fiction or non-fiction reads upon 1st World problems have readers reporting weeping and flushing emotively in their reviews. Of course h [...]

    2. Anytime you finish a book the same afternoon that you pick it up, it's usually a good sign that it's compelling. I am deeply impressed with the selection of North Korea memoirs that are on offer and how each one paints a different picture of a different life, a different person, but yet manages to share the same hopes for a better future.In particular, Joseph Kim's book is unique in a few regards; it continually struck me that he is my peer in age (only four years younger than myself) and so I r [...]

    3. Despite the detailed horrors of starvation, violence, loss and betrayal the author expresses in "Under the Same Sky," I never felt the story to be completely without hope or heart. There are times I felt guilty for enjoying the book, because the author, Kim, really lives through some truly dark and unbelievably awful years. His constant hunger and struggle to survive, and not only survive but connect with another human being who won't leave or betray him somehow, is written in a genuine and appe [...]

    4. I've read a few stories about North Korea, but Joseph Kim's is the one that certainly moved me the most so far. It's beautiful, heart breaking, and inspiring. It's a clear story with memories, and dates that I found myself identifying with. This little boy's struggle to understand a world that was collapsing around him, losing his father, and the never knowing of what has happened to his sister and mother.There are several reasons, I loved this book. It's written by a contemporary. A person of m [...]

    5. Kim's story is horrifying. It's different from many of the other stories of DPRK defectors I've read in that Kim was pretty much a child when he escaped North Korea and was motivated to leave first and foremost by starvation. The epilogue was heart-wrenching and the acknowledgements even more so. Kim's perspective is that of a child fighting to live homeless, starving, and without family in the DPRK; there are more comprehensive accounts of life in North Korea, but this personal, sad story of a [...]

    6. Dang. It’s not an enjoyable read as the subject matter is just too grim, but it’s important and moving. The story of a North Korean refugee who survived the famine, he doesn’t hold anything back, and it’s deeply depressing. When the population of an entire country lives on the edge of survival, they’re barely human. Any sense of loyalty, morality - humanity - goes out the window and all that’s left is survival. So sad.It has particular resonance for (South) Koreans because those are [...]

    7. 3.5 starsThis book is a bit difficult to review. I read "the girl with seven names" before this book and from that book I learned a lot about North Korea, so I felt like I already knew most of the information in the book. I still learned a lot especially since the authors had different lives and the author of this book was alone and had to resort to begging during the famine. However, the author of the girl with seven names faced many difficulties in China and those parts were an interesting rea [...]

    8. Joseph (Kwang Jin) Kim's recounting of his early life in North Korea is a poignant reminder not to forget those in need. It is not a light read, as young Kim faced numerous brutal events and chronic starvation from the years of famine. But this is a story that every caring person should know about. It is also a good read for Americans because it will provide insight into how North Korean refugees may view them and their culture. Overall, it was a beautifully written and emotionally moving biogra [...]

    9. A personal look at what it was like to live and grow up in North Korea during extreme famine. Heart-breaking yet hopeful narrative. I would like to know more about his journey after he arrived in America. I was disappointed that he didn't describe more of his spiritual journey. It seemed like the Christian church reached out to him when he was at his lowest point. He embraces his understanding of scripture, he accepts salvation, but once he makes it to America he doesn't again mention the Church [...]

    10. 3.5 stars. This one offers more insights into the day-to-day and special-occasion rituals of North Korean culture. The TV shows that little boys like. The foods and outfits parents give to their children for Sports Day. A few parts of the story struck me as unusual and hard to believe. For example, his family moved around the country a lot, more freely than I thought people could. And are North Korean defectors really taken directly to U.S. consulates/embassies in the PRC and flown to L.A.? I th [...]

    11. I had to put it down halfway and take a week's break to heal emotionally from the extremes of this man's childhood. I'm glad he's finally in a stable place, as far as physical needs go. I hope he continues to find healing emotionally and spiritually. Books like this make politics seem like raucous squabbling against the backdrop of the reality of real people carrying the weight of foolish politicians' decisions.

    12. Though it's definitely an interesting book that shows the life of North Koreans during the time the author grew up well, I had wished for a bit more on his life after leaving and get to know the inside of his head more, his thoughts and his feelings around everything (there is some of it, don't get me wrong, but I don't feel it's completely there). Worth the read though.

    13. I first came across Joseph Kim while browsing through the TED website in late 2017. After viewing his TED talk video, I was determined to go out and get hold of a copy of this book. The video itself was very inspiring and touching that I had to know his story. Like the sub title of the book mentions,it is a journey, albeit a tough and grueling one from starvation to salvation. His vivid recollection of his time in North Korea, his struggle, his escape and his current ongoing search for his siste [...]

    14. I read that many do not find these books interesting. These stories are very heartbreaking and I can truly be thankful after reading how blessed I am to have been born in America. It is unbelievable how the people are tricked or brainwashed. They just starve and work as slaves with no paycheck. Can you imagine no paycheck when you may have a child at home and wife who are all starving? Those people who find them selves in the darkest realm of living life and who have reached the lowest f not dec [...]

    15. There are no words that can adequately convey to outsiders what life is like in North Korea, but this book peels back the barriers to give us a glimpse within. N. Korea is a true horror. Its rulers brutalize its citizens from the moment they are born. The people are inundated with propaganda in all areas of their lives. There is no access to outside information; therefore, they have no idea of what is possible for them. They suffer, generation after generation. I don't know how they will be free [...]

    16. This was not an easy read and I had to take a break from it. It was hard to wrap my mind around all that Joseph Kim endured as a child in North Korea. Once he escaped to China he met Christians for the first time. It was a reminder to me of the importance of showing love and compassion. It drew him to Christianity and made him wonder what motivated these people. It's an important memoir and I highly recommend it.

    17. Excellent companion piece to The Orphan Master's Son - except this one is nonfiction. Frank McCourt also comes to mind. McCourt is funnier and more literary, but this is a very young man making sense a childhood where he almost starved to death, and his father did. Then, finally, he escapes North Korea - first to China, then to the US. One of the best depictions of poverty and hunger I've read. Would like to know more about his life in America, and hope he writes that memoir too.

    18. I gave this book five-stars because it didn't matter if the writing rose to Hemingway-standard. Joseph Kim's story made me feel I was right there with him on his journey. He offers a clear understanding of the oppression and cruelty that pervades North Korea. The ending was a beautiful one, where he finds what he didn't have even though he doesn't find what he lost and it makes the story complete.

    19. It's a breathtaking story of a boy that tries to survive in a routhless environment. I'm sure there are thousands of such stories that we don't know anything about and that don't have such a happy ending . I think books like this make us think about our priorities in life and what we want for our children. I strongly recommend to read it.

    20. This is a book everyone should read.I read this book because I am fascinated about every day life in North Korea and this book didn't let me down. The desire to survive the hardest of conditions was inspiring. I am truly humbled by the authors life, and pray for only the best in his future. I hope he finds his sister.

    21. I am used to reading North Korea books where the government and its controlling hand is close to the storyline. Under the Same Sky offers an approach I don't know that I have ever thought of ~ when a child falls through the cracks of the government hold and is forced to survive on his own merits which I have to say, I often struggled with.

    22. A tragic and shocking read about a young man’s experience growing up and escaping North Korea. This was a painful story to read, but one that needs to be told. To think that these kinds of injustices and atrocities still exist in Northern Korea is heart wrenching.

    23. What horrific conditions the author describes in this straightforward simple account of his childhood in North Korea. I have been informed.

    24. Quick read. Heart wrenching memoir during the time of the famine. Even a good ending when dealing with North Korean refugees is not a "good" ending.

    25. I am very grateful that Joseph Kim wrote his outstanding memoir Under the Same Sky.  In this book, Kim tells the heartbreaking story of his survival in North Korea to his journey as a refugee in the United States of America.  Kim’s purpose for writing this memoir is to inform readers about the daily atrocities that take place in North Korea.  Not only does Kim’s masterpiece give us insight on the history of North Korea, but also gruesome details about this mysterious nation.   Many them [...]

    26. Abrupt ending. Due to my fascination with North Korea I obviously found this book super interesting but also really sad

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