There are certain books you look forward to for quite a while before they finally come out. This book was one of them. And when I saw that a blog tour was being set up for it, I knew I wanted to be on it. So today, I’m pretty thrilled to share one of my more recent reads with you—and what a goodie! Completely different from what I expected, but sometimes those are the best ones, right?
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About This Book:
Author: Alana Terry
Genre: Christian Thriller/Suspense
Release date: June 25, 2018
Ian McAllister has searched the world over, hunting for that all-elusive perfect photograph.
He finds it on a tourist trip to North Korea when he stumbles upon a young street kid foraging for roots.
Unaware that this single act will brand him a spy and cost his freedom, Ian takes the shot.
Now he must pay the penalty.
A true-to-life novel about an American imprisoned behind North Korea’s closed borders.
A gripping tale of courage, faith, and hope from award-winning Christian novelist Alana Terry.
I was somewhat disappointed when I got into Out of North Korea—I was expecting a heart-racing read, and it turned out to be a slightly slower, more thoughtful book. Then, I fell in love with the story, and finished it fairly quickly after all.
Mrs. Terry wrote this book in first-person, present-tense. I’ve rarely ever seen a book from this perspective, and I know how difficult it can be to write like that. So I started off pretty impressed. I was also very impressed with how she kept the story moving at a good clip, while giving the main character time to reflect and make some pretty profound realizations.
One of my favorite parts of the book was when the main character began realizing there was more to life than the American dream of becoming rich and famous. I’ve rarely seen that in other books, but how it was displayed here was thought-provoking and very relatable. That isn’t the point of my life, either, I realized. I want to live for others—help them have happier, more fulfilling lives instead of just building up my own sandcastle that’ll one day fall apart.
I loved the humor in this story. It came through now and again—not so often that it was distracting, but just at the right moments to help liven up an otherwise sad situation.
I also loved the thought that God has His children all over the place. We may not recognize it, may not ever be able to see it, but He is working in our lives and the lives of those around us. That’s a beautiful thing. And seeing how He can bring the right people through at the right time is also encouraging.
Out of North Korea: More than a tale of how an American accidentally ended up behind bars because of one mistake. To me, this story had a lot deeper lessons. It showed me something about a country I don’t know much about. It showed me the power of prayer. It showed me how some of the things I focus on in life are actually a waste of time.
I hadn’t thought a book about a prisoner could do that. But it did.
Yes, this book didn’t strike me as being as much of a suspense novel as I thought it would be. But balanced out with all the different thoughts I’ve had since reading it, I thoroughly enjoyed the book. I’d recommend it to anyone who wants a different perspective on life, or wants an intriguing read about an American trapped in one of the world’s most closed countries.
I requested a review copy of this book, and this is my honest opinion of it.
About the Author:
Alana is a pastor’s wife, homeschooling mom, self-diagnosed chicken lady, and Christian suspense author. Her novels have won awards from Women of Faith, Book Club Network, Grace Awards, Readers’ Favorite, and more. Alana’s passion for social justice, human rights, and religious freedom shines through her writing, and her books are known for raising tough questions without preaching. She and her family live in rural Alaska where the northern lights in the winter and midnight sun in the summer make hauling water, surviving the annual mosquito apocalypse, and cleaning goat stalls in negative forty degrees worth every second.
To celebrate her tour, Alana is giving away a grand prize of a $30 Amazon gift card!
Go here to enter. Be sure to comment on this post before you enter to claim 9 extra entries!
Let’s discuss: Have you read a book lately that surprised you by being different than you thought it would be—and yet made you think a lot? What was it, and what did you learn?