In Order to Live, by Yeonmi Park
13/30 | Started 03.12.22 • Finished 03.17.22 | 4 stars
A moving account of one girl's escape from North Korea, through China into Mongolia and then South Korea. What begins as a journey of blind trust turns out to be an ordeal of trafficking, abuse, and violence leading to a life of fear and finally a life of freedom. I'm having a hard time putting in to words what I want to say about this book. Even though I've previously read stories of these kinds of real-life events, it was jarring to read about Yeonmi's mother sacrificing her own body to protect her then 13-year-old daughter from rape. It was incredible to see what people are able to endure out of sheer desperation. This isn't a long read, and well worth your time to spend a moment seeing what people in other parts of the world live through.
I understand that sometimes the only way we can survive our own memories is to shape them into a story that makes sense out of events that seem inexplicable.