A Corpse in the Koryo (2020)

A Corpse in the Koryo JamesChurch A Corpse in the Koryo Against the backdrop of a totalitarian North Korea one man unwillingly uncovers the truth behind series of murders and wagers his life in the process Sit on a quiet hillside at dawn among the wildfl
  • Title: A Corpse in the Koryo
  • Author: JamesChurch
  • ISBN: 9781429936552
  • Page: 208
  • Format: ebook
A Corpse in the Koryo JamesChurch Against the backdrop of a totalitarian North Korea, one man unwillingly uncovers the truth behind series of murders, and wagers his life in the process.Sit on a quiet hillside at dawn among the wildflowers take a picture of a car coming up a deserted highway from the south Simple orders for Inspector O, until he realizes they have led him far, far off his department s tuAgainst the backdrop of a totalitarian North Korea, one man unwillingly uncovers the truth behind series of murders, and wagers his life in the process.Sit on a quiet hillside at dawn among the wildflowers take a picture of a car coming up a deserted highway from the south Simple orders for Inspector O, until he realizes they have led him far, far off his department s turf and into a maelstrom of betrayal and death North Korea s leaders are desperate to hunt down and eliminate anyone who knows too much about a series of decades old kidnappings and murders and Inspector O discovers too late he has been sent into the chaos.This is a world where nothing works as it should, where the crimes of the past haunt the present, and where even the shadows are real A corpse in Pyongyang s main hotel the Koryo pulls Inspector O into a confrontation of bad choices between the devils he knows and those he doesn t want to meet A blue button on the floor of a hotel closet, an ice blue Finnish lake, and desperate efforts by the North Korean leadership set Inspector O on a journey to the edge of a reality he almost can t survive.Like Philip Kerr s Berlin Noir trilogy and the Inspector Arkady Renko novels, A Corpse in the Koryo introduces another unfamiliar world, a perplexing universe seemingly so alien that the rules are an enigma to the reader and even, sometimes, to Inspector O Author James Church weaves a story with beautifully spare prose and layered descriptions of a country and a people he knows by heart after decades as an intelligence officer This is a chilling portrayal that, in the end, leaves us wondering if what at first seemed unknowable may simply be too familiar for comfort.
A Corpse in the Koryo JamesChurch

  • [✓ A Corpse in the Koryo || ☆ PDF Read by Ï JamesChurch]
    208 JamesChurch
  • thumbnail Title: [✓ A Corpse in the Koryo || ☆ PDF Read by Ï JamesChurch]
    Posted by:JamesChurch
    Published :2020-02-03T18:19:31+00:00

One thought on “A Corpse in the Koryo

  1. Kemper

    Read it quick before North Korea decides you can t Kim Jong il wasn t just another fascist dictator whose only hobby was firing cruise missile over Japan when he got bored He was also reportedly an incredible golfer According to the state newspaper, the first time he ever played, Kim finished 18 holes in just 34 shots Which would be 25 shots lower than the best official round ever played and would mean that he hit multiple holes in one in a single round With the whole country so completely locke [...]

  2. Jim

    This was one of those books that starts out as a mystery and finisheswell, pretty much the same still a mystery Part police story and part 007 spy drama, you never quite know what exactly is going on The protagonist, Inspector O, at least I can spell his name is ordered about from pillar to post on a series of investigative odd jobs He seems as mystified as the reader regarding the deaths and corruption encountered during the course of his investigative meanderings.I ll be the first to admit tha [...]

  3. Christopher

    One of my coworkers is married to an editor for St Martin s, and he came to a company party one time with a bunch of free books Among the stack, I saw A Corpse in the Koryo and the title made me give it a second glance The fact that it was set in North Korea sold me my sisters are adopted from South Korea, and I ve had some interest in both countries for some time now.The book s pacing is not particularly speedy, but it doesn t ever get bogged down either The plot ticks away as characters are i [...]

  4. Lisa Sansone

    I agree with the general sentiments of most of the reviews on here.I liked a lot of things about the book I thought the character of Inspector O was interesting and engaging, and I was particularly moved by his relationship with both his grandfather and with his boss, Pak In many ways, I liked the atmosphere set by the author, and really appreciated his attention to the small detail, as well as his evocative descriptions of people and places.That said, I m not entirely sure that the actual plot, [...]

  5. J.

    There are quite a few reasons that this shouldn t be a winner, not least that the plotlines equivocate and cross themselves, while the reader is left with twelve shaggy dog threads to tie together in the end That is, if the reader is only interested in making some kind of logical structure out of the plot.But there are two main things working in favor of A Corpse In The Koryo, the simplest of which is that Mr Church happens to be a former intelligence officer with decades of experience in East A [...]

  6. Terence

    In the same vein of decent cops working for dictatorial regimes like my recently read Thirty Three Teeth is James Church s A Corpse in the Koryo Here, however, the atmosphere is far darker Where Cotterill plays up the absurdities of the Pathet Lao s regime, Church s North Korean bureaucrats are vicious thugs and the slightest mistake could and does cost lives.Inspector O is the grandson of a respected general and war hero, which gives him a certain amount of freedom denied his peers but it s a f [...]

  7. Darwin8u

    An amazing and ambitious first novel Think of it as Raymond Chandler gets hardboiled and eaten cold by a North Korean bureaucracy where the good guys don t just battle crime, but have to fight through a broken, Kafkaesque maze of political nihilism, factionalism, and stoic fatalism JUST to get some gas or a cup of tea Church s natural details are amazing, his writing is both polished and crisp, and his story is superbly well crafted I can imagine the idea for Inspector O slowly evolving and bein [...]

  8. Kathryn

    I initially felt that I would like this, but then found it a little difficult to get into possibly because I was distracted by another, very compelling book, so I temporarily put this one aside to finish that one When I came back to it, it felt a little disjointed but I don t know whether that was because my reading was interrupted, or because I was comparing the writing style to the other excellent book I d just finished or whether this was truly disjointed.There are some good quotes throughout [...]

  9. Rebecca Huston

    This was one of those novels that plays with your head for a bit Inspector O, a man of little importance in the Ministry of People s Security finds himself thrown into a case of smuggling, illicit dealing, a Western reporter, and a beautiful girl named Lena But it s than a tale of finding out whodunnit There s little touches of unexpected beauty, classic Korean poetry, and a real sense of being there If you like your thrillers to be tense and nervewracking, this will do quite nicely This gets f [...]

  10. Margaret Sankey

    A highlight in my collection of detective novels with protagonists who are morally ambivalent participants in repressive regimes in this case, the detective is an investigator for North Korean state security called up on to handle a death in one of Pyongyang s few hotels for foreigners He is the grandson of a revolutionary hero and thus both protected and keenly aware of his shield and its origin The specific, everyday details are affecting, and I am always impressed with motives and antagonists [...]

  11. Barbpie

    First in a series set in North Korea written by a former Western intelligence officer with decades of experience in Asia, which shows I can t wait to get my hands on Hidden Moon.

  12. Patrick Sherriff

    It took me than three years to get round to this first in the Inspector O series, after enjoying the Hidden Moon, the second in the series my brief review here review show What can I say I m as inefficient in my reading priorities as a North Korean minister What was true of his second novel is true of the first its strong points are being set in North Korea and the compelling hero being a fish out of water in the authoritarian state A weak point is a convoluted plot that we can have no understa [...]

  13. Mal Warwick

    Practically nothing works Government, police protection, buildings, cars, roads, appliances, telephones whatever they re either falling apart, damaged beyond repair, or, if you re lucky, barely functioning Welcome to North Korea in the 21st century, where nothing gets done without a bribe, and it s even difficult to find a cup of tea when you want one.Just for example, The train to Pyongyang was late Not like some places, where a late train means twenty minutes, even an hour on a bad day This tr [...]

  14. erforscherin

    I can see why the reviews are all over the place for this book it s definitely not your typical mystery, though the I think on it, the I wonder if that s not a misclassification anyway Koryo is by any measure one weird hybrid of a book With the intrigue and politics it s easy to think of John Le Carre, and the dark richness of the descriptions is definitely Raymond Chandler s noir all over, but then things get a bit harder to describe It s travelogue than police procedural, less a straight th [...]

  15. Mark

    Well written and compelling, the novel moves back and forth through time as North Korean Police Inspector O is drawn into a case which starts as a simple stakeout of a lonely highway As one body after another is discovered, the investigation becomes like a dangerous maze with no clear way out and very few allies on whom he can rely There are so many secrets, and everyone seems to know than our beleaguered policeman with the soul of a carpenter One drawback is that there are so many twists and t [...]

  16. Diane Clavette

    Pleased to meet Inspector O, a man of hidden depths My introduction to North Korea was certainly influenced by the events taking place at the time To say I felt a bit anxious would be an understatement The constant mistrust hanging about, the not knowing what was really going on and the need to keep thoughts where they originate created a muscle tension that must permeate the whole of the country With my western thought processes I found I was forced to alter my thinking in order to understand t [...]

  17. Gramarye

    North Korean spy novel police procedural may sound like a tough concept for any author to tackle, but Church does about as well as anyone could wish Inspector O who I first came across through Church s short blog posts on 38 North is a fine match for any noir protagonist, and though the twisting, violent plot can be hard to follow even for those who ve done some research on North Korean politics and history , it has a pitch perfect atmospheret least because of the high body count by the end I ll [...]

  18. Anita

    While the prose is very elegant and quite superior to most of those books in the genre, the plot was overly complicated and surprisingly uninteresting Definitely not a page turner, and I really had to force myself to finish it.

  19. Michael Miller

    My first Inspector O novel Set in North Korea, this novel captures the insularity, the repressiveness, the political intrigue, all the while unwinding a nifty little mystery for the Inspector I will read .

  20. Ching-Bing-Ping

    A Corpse in the Koryo by James Church is the first in the series of crime novel featuring Inspector O, set in the totalitarian country of North Korea The novels opens with Inspector O, handed with a camera waiting on a hill, waiting for a car to pass, which he is supposed to take a snap of The car comes and goes, hooting its horn, but the Inspector fails to take any picture of it As his failure is reported, he gets involved in a conspiracy involving departments, ministries, army officers, and a [...]

  21. DomoKete

    The novel follows Inspector O as he recounts his story of uncovering the plot behind a series of events he unwittingly finds himself in He works for the North Korean Ministry of People s Security but Inspector O must rely on his own survival instincts and intelligence alongside assistance from political allies and his grandfather s political legacy Inspector O himself has no real emotional reactions to events and is a malcontent at heart who challenges the status quo The atmosphere of life in No [...]

  22. John

    A solid mystery novel If not for a couple of glaring defects, I would gladly have rated it higher First off, the mystery itself though witty and entertaining isn t as tight as I would have liked it to be Secondly, the book does very little to expand your understanding as to the mindset of North Koreans That seems damn near unforgivable in a novel which uses its setting as its primary selling point But for whatever reason, James Church s Inspector O thinks and talks just like an American So, to a [...]

  23. Ludditus

    Although a bit clumsy and a somewhat exaggerated in those parts where it tries to be something between G rard de Villiers s SAS and 007, the Inspector O series deserves a solid four stars for originality, and also because the first installment made me curious about the other five novels My knowledge of North Korea is not that much beyond that of other people, but I profess to have been particularly curious about that surrealist country, and I happened to have read a number of books on DPRK, watc [...]

  24. ✘✘ Sarah ✘✘ (former Nefarious Breeder of Murderous Crustaceans)

    I have to admit that I didn t fully understand what was going on in this book It might very well be that the author did it on purpose to emphasize the complicated relationships between the various official and not so official organizations in North Korea The book is an easy read and I liked the characters of Inspectors O Pak This novel is the first one I read that is set in North Korea, which I found quite interesting, and I m looking forward to reading the other books in the series

  25. Derek

    I read these mystery thrillers set in foreign lands as much for the insight into another culture as for the mystery, so this novel was a disappointment when I learned almost nothing about North Korea It s an authoritarian system Great I didn t even get much of a sense of asia ness about it As for the actual mystery nobody actually seemed to care about the Corpse in the Koryo hotel, and it s solution was a throwaway at the very end.

  26. Spencer

    Short and quick, but the plot didn t tug me a long like my favorite thrillers What I enjoyed most about this book was the setting North Korea is an interesting place that is often confusing for both the protagonist and the western reader Still, it was like peaking behind the curtain and seeing an area that you aren t supposed to For fans of the culture clash at the heart of John Burdett s Bangkok series.

  27. Jack

    A murder mystery that takes place in North Korea Caught my eye when I read a positive review of the book in the Washington Post by one of their intelligence reporters either Pincus or Kessler Can t remember which But this book was so darned slow that I began to think I was the murder victim or wished that I was Worse yet, if I was the victim, I didn t care to know who killed me I always believed that living in North Korea really sucked Now I am convinced of it.

  28. Daniel

    This hard boiled mystery should provide an insider s view of North Korea given the pseudonymous author s intelligence work there But while there are glimpses of such insight, the setting of state control and social mistrust serves mainly as backdrop to a host of noir clich s only too familiar to Western readers Corpse is deliciously dark and diverting, but less illuminating than might be hoped.

  29. Kristina

    Very odd book Very well written Not sure if I understood what was going on half the time due to the political machinations and the utter foreign ness of the setting North Korea It s a very unusual police detective novel If you want something off the beaten track and totally different, this would be the book for you.

  30. Nicole

    I really wanted to like this book, I found the setting of North Korea very intriguing and thought this would hold my interest Unfortunately, the pace is much too slow I understand as a reader of a mystery we would be kept in the dark along with the Inspector, but I gave up after 120 pages Just too slow.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *