This is an account of an American woman's recent travels through North Korea. Throughout her journey, she continually witnessed rundown villages, starving children with hollow eyes, haggard women crawling in the fields for single grains of rice and civilians unloading food aid at the point of bayonets. The author predicts that North Korea's economic reform, which has just started, will progress slowly, but that the country will one day be open to the outside world. It may, however, take another twenty years for this reform to be complete. Small, reluctant changes have already happened though, and this book expresses optimism that one day the North Korean people will end their isolation and join the world's mainstream.
Writer Nanchu lives in Athens, Georgia. Her articles have appeared in Rocky Mountain News, Mid-US News, and Shanghai Health News. Xing Hang is a Ph.D candidate in Chinese history, University of California at Berkeley.