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Dear Reader: The Unauthorized Autobiography of Kim Jong Il Paperback – January 25, 2014

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

MICHAEL MALICE is the subject of Harvey Pekar’s graphic novel, Ego & Hubris: the Michael Malice Story. He is also the co-author of several other books, including Made in America with UFC Hall of Famer Matt Hughes and I Want You to Shut the F#ck Up with comedian D.L. Hughley.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 420 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform (January 25, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1495283259
  • ISBN-13: 978-1495283253
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 1 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #667,091 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 34 people found the following review helpful By P. Vaihansky on February 10, 2014
Format: Paperback
I just finished the book earlier today. Having been born and raised in the USSR, I could actually relate quite to the bizarre universe the book draws you into. I grew up surrounded by propaganda - and by the reality of socialist/communist life - that was very similar to what' depicted in Dear Reader in style, if not in degree. So, my American friends, if you think that what you are reading about the NK society and the ways of the Juche idea is hyperbole, think again: it is probably all true, and perhaps the reality is even worse. Even though the book is obviously written in a tongue-in-cheek style, the tragic farce that is North Korea is visible. You will laugh at the insane clown of a dictator - and weep for millions of his subjects, if you have any heart at all. Get this book.
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By E. Zitron on January 31, 2014
Format: Paperback
Disclosure: I read this book as an unedited manuscript before its full launch and got it for free.

Before this point I did not know anything about Michael Malice, and not much about North Korea other than the pop-culture nonsense of the world view of him as a crazy quirky dictator.

This book is created out of Malice's use of about 60~ different books *actually from North Korea* and hundreds of articles' worth of research actually from the DRPK, as well as stuff written by others who have gone there. He has actually been to the country and that's where he got the books.

The book is written like an autobiography. Some of it is adding dramatization to it and building as strong a timeline as you can build from brooks that were 'written' by Kim Jong Il himself, including ridiculous things that he claims to have happened. These may not be written by KJI himself. That's not clear to anyone.

Occasionally international events happen - the Axe Murder Incident, for one - as well as his father's actual revolution.

The style is chaotic and bombastic and uneasy to read at times, with little mentions to the horrific situation in North Korea (concentration camps, the caste system) that read as afterthoughts but spell much greater dangers to the country.

The ending, within the last 10 pages, is brutal, heartbreaking and emotionally draining.

I do not like to read these kings of books, and forced myself to, and I was glad I did.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Ben Deyo on February 12, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I've just finished Michael Malice's masterwork, Dear Reader, almost all of which I read in a single day-long sitting.

Lately, I've had less interest in reading than ever before. I read at most a book a month. Most books I pick up I find impossible to finish because they fail to hold my interest. With a stroke of his pen, Malice has rekindled my love of the printed word into a flame of passion, for which I gratefully call him, "Dear Lighter."

The book is profound and seductive; the reader is taught the meaning of the personality cult by being invited to one. Like Milton's Satan, Malice's Kim Jung Il is a dazzling hero whose only defect is his utter and absolute cruelty. To read his story is to be moved by the plight of the Korean people before and after the rise of North Korean communism. The appeal of Kim Il Sung as a national hero, and Jung Il as his worthy successor, become vividly real in the context of the 20th Century and the role of the United States in Asia.

As in Shirer's Rise and Fall of the Third Reich, we are charmed into admiration for the charismatic dictator so thoroughly that when his crimes are revealed we feel ourselves culpable. Don't read Dear Reader if you're looking for a political cartoon or a crude parody. Read it knowing that the uncomfortable truths you face may be about yourself.

The basest of human impulses is the desire to be ruled. Dear Reader exposes the true nature of power and corruption.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By G. Perry on June 9, 2014
Format: Paperback
I don't think I can emphasize the unique nature of this book enough. There has been a spate of North Korean literature published in the English language in recent years, especially in the wake of the exodus from North Korea by refugees seeking to prevent their own deaths at the hands of a regime whose odiousness is world renowned. We've had an 800 page-long exegesis of the North Korean state by a western journalist, as well as a first-hand account by a Korean exile whose family was imprisoned in Yodok concentration camp. We've had graphic novels about the surreal nature of life in North Korea, and even a memoir by the only person known to have escaped from a total-control zone inside of a North Korean prison camp-or "enlightenment center," as the ostensible author of this book describes it.

What we haven't had is a comprehensive look at the history of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea from the perspective of the man who ruled it for nearly three decades. As unconventional as the author's literary approach might seem, it really is effective at conveying not only the immensity of the crimes committed under the auspices of Juche ideology but also the rationale behind the Kim Dynasty's atrocities. Which is fortunate, since the west knows next to nothing about the inner circle of the North Korean regime.

One of the methods Michael Malice uses to decrypt the ostensibly opaque reasoning behind the DPRK's actions on the world stage is taking the statements made by that country's leaders at face value. Instead of merely shaking his head and throwing up his hands at the absurdity of these seemingly implausible assertions, he assumes that Kim Jong-il and his subordinates are rational actors.
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