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The Defections

The Defections

‘Stunning’ The Times
‘Excellent’ Independent on Sunday
‘Compelling, haunting and thrilling’ David Peace

Seoul, South Korea

Mia is an outsider. Half-English, half-Korean, a translator at the British Embassy; she treads a boundary between her roots and the acceptance she desires from the English – especially her boss, Thomas: a married diplomat.

Thomas’s career is jeopardized by an outrageous indiscretion until Mia comes to his rescue. At first grateful, his feelings are soon complicated by a commission to investigate the background of the woman who has captivated him.

Hyun-min is a defector from North Korea, taken in by Mia’s family. But he has a secret. One that could shatter Mia’s family, her life and the fragile borders around them all.

Genre: Fiction & Related Items / Modern & Contemporary Fiction (post C 1945)

On Sale: 15th November 2018

Price: £8.99

ISBN-13: 9781782062585

Reviews

Michell's portrait of Seoul fascinates: its dust and neon, sweat and suspicion. An impressively layered and carefully constructed novel . . . an author worth watching
Daily Mail
Fantastic . . . The thriller element of the story moves at a belting pace
Saga
One of the most compelling, haunting and thrilling debuts I have ever read. It is a book of betrayals and borders, real and imagined, and of deceptions and desires which beautifully and dramatically evokes the spectres of Korea's past and the divisions of its present in ways reminiscent of The Quiet American or McEwan's The Innocent'
David Peace
Excellent . . . Written in crisp prose, Michell's novel deftly weaves the tale of Mia's torrid romance with the political history of the Korean peninsula. But in many ways her presentation of the British expatriates is more intriguing: like the embittered colonials in the stories of Graham Greene, Michell's Brits are both arrogant and insecure
Independent on Sunday
This stunning first novel is a fascinating portrait of a divided country, seething with prejudice and intrigue; Michell, who grew up in Seoul, takes the reader deep into the desperate, dangerous underground routes of the defectors from the North
The Times
Michell reveals herself not only as a perceptive observer of character, but a writer capable of exploring big ideas . . . Damaged, flawed Mia is a compelling protagonist
Guardian
This stunning first novel is a fascinating portrait of a divided country, seething with prejudice and intrigue; Michell, who grew up in Seoul, takes the reader deep into the desperate, dangerous underground routes of the defectors from the North
The Times
Excellent . . . Written in crisp prose, Michell's novel deftly weaves the tale of Mia's torrid romance with the political history of the Korean peninsula. But in many ways her presentation of the British expatriates is more intriguing: like the embittered colonials in the stories of Graham Greene, Michell's Brits are both arrogant and insecure
Independent on Sunday
This is an impressively layered and carefully constructed novel, its characters caught between languages, loyalties and worlds . . . Michell's portrait of Seoul fascinates: its dust and neon, sweat and suspicion. But what catches you by surprise is the slowly-revealed audacity of her plot as suspicions and misunderstandings escalate into an international crisis. Having already earned comparison to Ian McEwan, she's an author worth watching
Daily Mail
One of the most compelling, haunting and thrilling debuts I have ever read. It is a book of betrayals and borders, real and imagined, and of deceptions and desires which beautifully and dramatically evokes the spectres of Korea's past and the divisions of its present in ways reminiscent of The Quiet American or McEwan's The Innocent
David Peace
Michell reveals herself not only as a perceptive observer of character, but a writer capable of exploring big ideas
Guardian
The author grew up in Seoul and has used her own experience as an outsider to write this fantastic first novel . . . The thriller element of the story moves at a belting pace
Saga