The Great Successor: The Secret Rise and Rule of Kim Jong Un
Writing and commentary on North Korea are routinely crippled by our poor knowledge of its inner workings. The government publishes few formal documents or White Papers for outsiders, provides little hard data such as calculations of annual economic growth or national budget figures, and routinely exaggerates or lies in its propaganda. So we often rely on logic or parallels to now-defunct Stalinist states to make estimations of its motivations. In her biography of North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un, Anna Fifield has tried hard to push beyond these limitations, chasing leads around the world and reaching out directly to dozens if not hundreds of interviewees, including many North Korean defectors. This gives the book a powerful credibility.