Tag Archives: South Korea

Proof Day

You know the adage, “the proof is in the pudding?” Well, that’s how I felt when I received my proof of Bureau 39 in the mail today. It’s a big day when you see the physical copy of your book for the first time. It’s a thrill that never gets old. Even though I had […]

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What is Bureau 39?

What exactly is the infamous Bureau 39? This is what Wikipedia says: “Room 39 (officially Central Committee Bureau 39 of the Korean Workers’ Party, also referred to as Bureau 39, Division 39, or Office 39) is a secretive North Korean party organization that seeks ways to maintain the foreign currency slush fund for the country’s […]

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CIA Creates Mission Center on North Korean Threat

I couldn’t ask for better publicity for my new novel, Bureau 39. Every time there’s a story about North Korea these days means more exposure for my novel. In this case, a mission center in Seoul to assess the North Korean threat. “Creating the Korea Mission Center allows us to more purposefully integrate and direct […]

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Bureau 39: The Beginning

Many people have asked me how did I come up with the story for my latest novel, Bureau 39. The story of Frank Mitchum chasing down an old Army buddy in Korea while trying to cut-off North Korea’s funding for its WMDs started out as a story about a murder in Itaewon, which was based […]

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Bureau 39 — An Excerpt

WRAPPED IN LAYERS of threadbare rayon and vinylon, Kim Min-hee shivered on the shore of the frozen river and hoped she wouldn’t have to wait too long. After traveling for almost two days to get there, she had lain low for another day to watch for military patrols, and had been unable to light a […]

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National Geographic — December 1979

One of my prized possessions is a 1979 issue of National Geographic that I bought on eBay to remind me of what it was like to come to Korea in 1990. It was late summer 1990. Iraq had invaded Kuwait, Die Hard 2 and Ghost were two of the summer’s hottest movies, and I had […]

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Book Review: Letters from Joseon

Korea in the late nineteenth century was a turbulent time. John Mahelm Berry Sill, the American Minister to Korea from 1894-1897, couldn’t have asked for a more difficult posting. In that time there would be the Sino-Japanese War, the Gabo Reforms, the murder of a Korean queen, and the subsequent refuge of King Gojong in […]

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A Hard Rain’s Gonna Fall

Not much of a rainy season in Korea this summer. Had some torrential rain for about three days in mid-June. Hasn’t rained much since. Now that August has arrived, we are entering typhoon season. Had some really wicked typhoon seasons in the late 90s. I remembering coming back to Shinch’on from teaching a class at […]

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On the horizon…

Not one, but three new books coming down the pike. The first one is a collection of short stories, The Roads We Must Travel, which is being published by the Big Table Publishing Company. I’m really excited to have this collection published by an indie press, especially this one which has published some very good titles […]

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Hot Enough For You?

The dog days of summer are upon us and it’s been one sweltering, humid day after another with no relief in sight. It’s without question one of the hottest and most humid summers I have experienced in all my years in Korea. There have been some hot summers here in Korea that come close to […]

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