"On the surface, A Corpse in the Koryo is a crackling good mystery novel, filled with unusual characters involved in a complex plot that keeps you guessing to the end."
---Glenn Kessler, The Washington Post
One of Publishers Weekly Top 100 Books of 2006
One of Booklist's Best Genre Fiction of 2006
One of the Chicago Tribune's best mystery/thrillers of 2006
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 decade's-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.
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.
". . . an outstanding crime novel. . . . a not-to-be-missed reading experience. "
---Library Journal (starred)
"Inspector O is completely believable and sympathetic . . . The writing is superb, too . . . richly layered and visually evocative."
". . . an impressive debut that calls to mind such mystery thrillers as Martin Cruz Smith's Gorky Park. . . ."
---Publishers Weekly (starred)