The Comfort Bearer – Book Review

Cathy Patrenos tells a human story of power, greed, lust, loss of innocence, and survival through the eyes of a Korean teenager, abducted by Japanese soldiers during the early days of WWII and continuing through the end of the war. The reader is there with Soon Ja as she experiences unbelievable abuse, torture, and cruelty during her forced sex-slavery at the enemy’s hands in occupied China and Mongolia. The book is at times graphic, raw, and uncomfortable, detailing the limits of human depravity. At other times, the goodness in people—enemies and allies—comes through like a warm light, giving hope for mankind. The story weaves through little-known actual historical events of the Japanese occupation of Korea, China, and Mongolia before and during the war. Soon Ja tells it with such detail, you become convinced she intends to remember every crime against her and live to tell about it.

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