The Sympathizer

The Sympathizer
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 384
ISBN: 0802124941
Available:
Release: 2016-04-12
Editor: Unknown
Language: un

Explanation of the Book:

The winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, compared by critics to the works of Graham Greene, Denis Johnson, and George Orwell,The Sympathizer is a blistering exploration of identity, politics, and America, wrought in electric prose. The narrator, a Vietnamese army captain, is a man of divided loyalties, a half-French, half-Vietnamese communist sleeper agent in America after the end of the Vietnam War. A powerful story of love and friendship, and a gripping espionage novel,The Sympathizer examines the legacy of the Vietnam War in literature, film, and the wars we fight today.

The Sympathizer

The Sympathizer
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 384
ISBN: 9780802191694
Available:
Release: 2015-04-02
Editor: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction Winner of the 2016 Edgar Award for Best First Novel Winner of the 2016 Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction “[A] remarkable debut novel”—Philip Caputo, New York Times Book Review (cover review) The winner of the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, as well as seven other awards, The Sympathizer is one of the most acclaimed books of the twenty-first century. With the pace and suspense of a thriller and prose that has been compared to Graham Greene and Vladimir Nabokov, The Sympathizer is a sweeping epic of love and betrayal. The narrator, a communist double agent, is a “man of two minds,” a half-French, half-Vietnamese army captain who comes to America after the Fall of Saigon, and while building a new life with other Vietnamese refugees in Los Angeles is secretly reporting back to his communist superiors in Vietnam. The Sympathizer is a blistering exploration of identity and America, a gripping spy novel, and a powerful story of love and friendship.

The Sympathizer

The Sympathizer
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 641
ISBN: 1410482626
Available:
Release: 2015-10-28
Editor: Unknown
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A profound, startling, and beautifully crafted debut novel, "The Sympathizer" is the story of a man of two minds, someone whose political beliefs clash with his individual loyalties. It is April 1975, and Saigon is in chaos. At his villa, a general of the South Vietnamese army is drinking whiskey and, with the help of his trusted captain, drawing up a list of those who will be given passage aboard the last flights out of the country. The general and his compatriots start a new life in Los Angeles, unaware that one among their number, the captain, is secretly observing and reporting on the group to a higher-up in the Viet Cong. "The Sympathizer" is the story of this captain: a man brought up by an absent French father and a poor Vietnamese mother, a man who went to university in America, but returned to Vietnam to fight for the Communist cause. A gripping spy novel, an astute exploration of extreme politics, and a moving love story, "The Sympathizer" explores a life between two worlds and examines the legacy of the Vietnam War in literature, film, and the wars we fight today.

The Committed

The Committed
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 329
ISBN: 9780802157089
Available:
Release: 2021-03-02
Editor: Grove Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

The long-awaited new novel from one of America’s most highly regarded contemporary writers, The Committed follows the unnamed Sympathizer as he arrives in Paris in the early 1980s with his blood brother Bon. The pair try to overcome their pasts and ensure their futures by engaging in capitalism in one of its purest forms: drug dealing. Traumatized by his reeducation at the hands of his former best friend, Man, and struggling to assimilate into French culture, the Sympathizer finds Paris both seductive and disturbing. As he falls in with a group of left-wing intellectuals whom he meets at dinner parties given by his French Vietnamese “aunt,” he finds stimulation for his mind but also customers for his narcotic merchandise. But the new life he is making has perils he has not foreseen, whether the self-torture of addiction, the authoritarianism of a state locked in a colonial mindset, or the seeming paradox of how to reunite his two closest friends whose worldviews put them in absolute opposition. The Sympathizer will need all his wits, resourcefulness, and moral flexibility if he is to prevail. Both literary thriller and novel of ideas, The Committed is a blistering portrayal of commitment and betrayal that will cement Viet Thanh Nguyen’s position in the firmament of American letters.

Nothing Ever Dies

Nothing Ever Dies
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 374
ISBN: 9780674660342
Available:
Release: 2016-04-05
Editor: Harvard University Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Nothing Ever Dies, Viet Thanh Nguyen writes. All wars are fought twice, the first time on the battlefield, the second time in memory. From the author of the bestselling novel The Sympathizer comes a searching exploration of a conflict that lives on in the collective memory of both the Americans and the Vietnamese.

The Sympathizer

The Sympathizer
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 384
ISBN: 1472154916
Available:
Release: 2019-06
Editor: Corsair
Language: un

Explanation of the Book:

The Refugees

The Refugees
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 224
ISBN: 9780802189356
Available:
Release: 2017-02-07
Editor: Grove/Atlantic, Inc.
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

From the author of The Sympathizer, winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, The Refugees is the second piece of fiction from a powerful voice in American letters, praised as “beautiful and heartrending” (Joyce Carol Oates, New Yorker), “terrific” (Chicago Tribune), and “an important and incisive book” (Washington Post) Published in hardcover to astounding acclaim, The Refugees is the remarkable debut collection of short stories by Viet Thanh Nguyen, winner of the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction for his novel The Sympathizer. In these powerful stories, written over a period of twenty years and set in both Vietnam and America, Nguyen paints a vivid portrait of the experiences of people leading lives between two worlds, the adopted homeland and the country of birth. With the same incisiveness as in The Sympathizer, in The Refugees Viet Thanh Nguyen gives voice to the hopes and expectations of people making life-changing decisions to leave one country for another, and the rifts in identity, loyalties, romantic relationships, and family that accompany relocation. From a young Vietnamese refugee who suffers profound culture shock when he comes to live with two gay men in San Francisco, to a woman whose husband is suffering from dementia and starts to confuse her for a former lover, to a girl living in Ho Chi Minh City whose older half-sister comes back from America having seemingly accomplished everything she never will, the stories are a captivating testament to the dreams and hardships of migration. The second work of fiction by a major new voice in American letters, The Refugees is a beautifully written and sharply observed book about the aspirations of those who leave one country for another, and the relationships and desires for self-fulfillment that define our lives.

Summary and Analysis of The Sympathizer

Summary and Analysis of The Sympathizer
Author: Worth Books
Pages: 30
ISBN: 9781504044806
Available:
Release: 2017-03-21
Editor: Open Road Media
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

So much to read, so little time? This brief overview of The Sympathizer tells you what you need to know—before or after you read Viet Thanh Nguyen’s book. Crafted and edited with care, Worth Books set the standard for quality and give you the tools you need to be a well-informed reader. This short summary and analysis of The Sympathizer includes: Historical context Chapter-by-chapter overviews Profiles of the main characters Themes and symbols Important quotes Fascinating trivia Glossary of terms Supporting material to enhance your understanding of the original work About The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen: Viet Thanh Nguyen’s Pulitzer Prize–winning book depicts the secret life of an unnamed Vietnamese man, grappling with various identities, whose story begins with the evacuation of Saigon, continues with his life living in America after the war, and ends with a shocking twist. Written in the form of a confession, this darkly humorous tale is a brilliant, long-overdue addition to the canon of immigrant literature. Part spy novel, part political thriller, and part satire, The Sympathizer offers smart, scathing, and timely commentary on the state of race, class, war, politics, and the media. The summary and analysis in this ebook are intended to complement your reading experience and bring you closer to a great work of fiction.

Race and Resistance

Race and Resistance
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9780190287238
Available:
Release: 2002-03-28
Editor: Oxford University Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

In Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America, Viet Nguyen argues that Asian American intellectuals have idealized Asian America, ignoring its saturation with capitalist practices. This idealization of Asian America means that Asian American intellectuals can neither grapple with their culture's ideological diversity nor recognize their own involvement with capitalist practices such as the selling of racial identity. Making his case through the example of literature, which remains a critical arena of cultural production for Asian Americans, Nguyen demonstrates that literature embodies the complexities, conflicts, and potential future options of Asian American culture.

The Headmaster s Wager

The Headmaster s Wager
Author: Vincent Lam
Pages: 400
ISBN: 9780307367914
Available:
Release: 2012-04-24
Editor: Doubleday Canada
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

From Giller Prize winner, internationally acclaimed, and bestselling author Vincent Lam comes a superbly crafted, highly suspenseful, and deeply affecting novel set against the turmoil of the Vietnam War. Percival Chen is the headmaster of the most respected English school in Saigon. He is also a bon vivant, a compulsive gambler and an incorrigible womanizer. He is well accustomed to bribing a forever-changing list of government officials in order to maintain the elite status of the Chen Academy. He is fiercely proud of his Chinese heritage, and quick to spot the business opportunities rife in a divided country. He devotedly ignores all news of the fighting that swirls around him, choosing instead to read the faces of his opponents at high-stakes mahjong tables. But when his only son gets in trouble with the Vietnamese authorities, Percival faces the limits of his connections and wealth and is forced to send him away. In the loneliness that follows, Percival finds solace in Jacqueline, a beautiful woman of mixed French and Vietnamese heritage, and Laing Jai, a son born to them on the eve of the Tet offensive. Percival's new-found happiness is precarious, and as the complexities of war encroach further and further into his world, he must confront the tragedy of all he has refused to see. Blessed with intriguingly flawed characters moving through a richly drawn historical and physical landscape, The Headmaster's Wager is a riveting story of love, betrayal and sacrifice.

Margreete s Harbor

Margreete s Harbor
Author: Eleanor Morse
Pages: 384
ISBN: 9781250271556
Available:
Release: 2021-04-20
Editor: St. Martin's Press
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A literary novel set on the coast of Maine during the 1960s, tracing the life of a family and its matriarch as they negotiate sharing a home. Eleanor Morse's Margreete’s Harbor begins with a fire: a fiercely-independent, thrice-widowed woman living on her own in a rambling house near the Maine coast forgets a hot pan on the stovetop, and nearly burns her place down. When Margreete Bright calls her daughter Liddie to confess, Liddie realizes that her mother can no longer live alone. She, her husband Harry, and their children Eva and Bernie move from a settled life in Michigan across the country to Margreete’s isolated home, and begin a new life. Margreete’s Harbor tells the story of ten years in the history of a family: a novel of small moments, intimate betrayals, arrivals and disappearances that coincide with America during the late 1950s through the turbulent 1960s. Liddie, a professional cellist, struggles to find space for her music in a marriage that increasingly confines her; Harry’s critical approach to the growing war in Vietnam endangers his new position as a high school history teacher; Bernie and Eva begin to find their own identities as young adults; and Margreete slowly descends into a private world of memories, even as she comes to find a larger purpose in them. This beautiful novel—attuned to the seasons of nature, the internal dynamics of a family, and a nation torn by its contradicting ideals—reveals the largest meanings in the smallest and most secret moments of life. Readers of Elizabeth Strout, Alice Munro, and Anne Tyler will find themselves at home in Margreete’s Harbor.

Odysseus Abroad

Odysseus Abroad
Author: Amit Chaudhuri
Pages: 224
ISBN: 9781101874523
Available:
Release: 2015-04-07
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

From the widely acclaimed writer, a beguiling new novel, at once wistful and ribald, about a day in the life of two Indian men in London--a university student and his bachelor uncle--each coping in his own way with alienation, solitariness, and the very art of living. It is 1985. Twenty-two-year-old Ananda has been in London for two years, practicing at being a poet. He's homesick, thinks of himself as an inveterate outsider, and yet he can't help feeling that there's something romantic, even poetic, in his isolation. His uncle, Radhesh, a magnificent failure who lives in genteel impoverishment and celibacy, has been in London for nearly three decades. Odysseus Abroad follows them on one of their weekly, familiar forays about town. The narrative surface has the sensual richness that has graced all of Amit Chaudhuri's work. But the great charm and depth of the novel reside in Ananda's far-ranging ruminations (into the triangle between his mother, father, and Radhesh--his mother's brother, his father's best friend; his Sylheti/Bengali ancestry; the ambitions and pressures that rest on his shoulders); in Radhesh's often artfully wielded idiosyncrasies; and in the spiky, needful, sometimes comical, yet ultimately loving connection between the two men. This eBook edition includes a reading group guide.

Love in the Ruins

Love in the Ruins
Author: Walker Percy
Pages: 379
ISBN: 9781453216200
Available:
Release: 2011-03-29
Editor: Open Road Media
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A “brilliant and hilarious” novel of the end times in America and one psychiatrist’s quest to save mankind, from a New York Times–bestselling author (Dallas Morning News). The United States seems to be on the brink of catastrophe. From the abandoned cars littering the highways (no one remembers how to fix them) to the endless hours spent on the golf course (now open twenty-four hours for those who can’t bother to wait until daylight to putt) to the starkly polarized political and religious factions dividing the country (which are increasingly difficult to tell apart), it is startlingly evident that the great experiment of the American Dream has failed. The only problem is that no one has noticed. No one, that is, except Dr. Thomas More. Dr. More, an alcoholic, womanizing, lapsed-Catholic psychiatrist, has invented the lapsometer: a machine capable of diagnosing and curing the spiritual afflictions that are speeding society toward its inevitable collapse. If used correctly, the lapsometer could make anxiety, depression, alienation, and racism things of the past. But, in the wrong hands, it could propel the nation even more quickly into chaos. Hailed as “vividly entertaining” by the Los Angeles Times and “profoundly moving” by the Milwaukee Journal, Love in the Ruins is a towering, mind-bending work of satirical speculative fiction by the National Book Award–winning author of The Moviegoer.

The Dean s December

The Dean s December
Author: Saul Bellow
Pages: 309
ISBN: 9781623730345
Available:
Release: 2016-03-31
Editor: Odyssey Editions
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

After being widely portrayed as a virulent racist and a traitor to his city, Professor Albert Corde, dean of the faculty of Journalism, is forced to leave Chicago. Corde is ill-equipped to handle the outrage that faces him, both as the author of several articles on Chicago’s endemic corruption, and as an outspoken figure in the controversial trial of two black men charged with killing a white student. Travelling to Bucharest to visit his ailing mother-in-law, he is unable to escape the comparisons in his mind between the corrupt and dehumanizing aspects of the communist regime, and the abandoned streets of his home city. Meditating on the juxtaposition between two distant worlds, and obsessing over events that begin to unfold both in Chicago and Bucharest, he begins to concede defeat. In this tormented tale, amid the swirling forces that threaten to drown his humanity, Corde slides ever closer to the brink of desolation.

The Woman Who Lost Her Soul

The Woman Who Lost Her Soul
Author: Bob Shacochis
Pages: 738
ISBN: 9780802193094
Available:
Release: 2013-09-03
Editor: Open Road + Grove/Atlantic
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Pulitzer Prize finalist: “A soaring literary epic about the forces that have driven us to the 9/11 age . . . relentlessly captivating” (Ron Charles, The Washington Post). When humanitarian lawyer Tom Harrington travels to Haiti to investigate the murder of a beautiful photojournalist, he is confronted with a dangerous landscape riddled with poverty, corruption, and voodoo. It’s the late 1990s, a time of brutal guerrilla warfare and civilian kidnappings. The journalist, whom he knew years before as Jackie Scott, had a bigger investment in Haiti than it seemed. To make sense of her death, Tom must plunge back into his complicated ties to Jackie—and her mysterious past. Shacochis traces Jackie’s shadowy family history from the outlaw terrain of World War II Dubrovnik to 1980s Istanbul. Caught between her first love and her domineering father—an elite Cold War spy pressuring her to follow in his footsteps—seventeen-year-old Jackie hatches a desperate escape plan. But getting out also puts her on the path that turns her into the soulless woman Tom fears as much as desires. Set over fifty years and in four war-torn countries, The Woman Who Lost Her Soul is National Book Award winner Bob Shacochis’s masterpiece and a magnum opus. It brings to life an intricate portrait of catastrophic events that led up to the war on terror and the America we are today.

The Displaced

The Displaced
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9781683352075
Available:
Release: 2018-04-10
Editor: Abrams
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

In January 2017, Donald Trump signed an executive order stopping entry to the United States from seven predominantly Muslim countries and dramatically cutting the number of refugees allowed to resettle in the United States each year. The American people spoke up, with protests, marches, donations, and lawsuits that quickly overturned the order. But the refugee caps remained. In The Displaced, Pulitzer Prize–winning writer Viet Thanh Nguyen, himself a refugee, brings together a host of prominent refugee writers to explore and illuminate the refugee experience. Featuring original essays by a collection of writers from around the world, The Displaced is an indictment of closing our doors, and a powerful look at what it means to be forced to leave home and find a place of refuge.

The Harder They Come

The Harder They Come
Author: T.C. Boyle
Pages: 400
ISBN: 9780062349392
Available:
Release: 2015-03-31
Editor: Harper Collins
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

Acclaimed New York Times bestselling author T.C. Boyle makes his Ecco debut with a powerful, gripping novel that explores the roots of violence and anti-authoritarianism inherent in the American character. Set in contemporary Northern California, The Harder They Come explores the volatile connections between three damaged people—an aging ex-Marine and Vietnam veteran, his psychologically unstable son, and the son's paranoid, much older lover—as they careen towards an explosive confrontation. On a vacation cruise to Central America with his wife, seventy-year-old Sten Stensen unflinchingly kills a gun-wielding robber menacing a busload of senior tourists. The reluctant hero is relieved to return home to Fort Bragg, California, after the ordeal—only to find that his delusional son, Adam, has spiraled out of control. Adam has become involved with Sara Hovarty Jennings, a hardened member of the Sovereign Citizens’ Movement, right-wing anarchists who refuse to acknowledge the laws and regulations of the state, considering them to be false and non-applicable. Adam’s senior by some fifteen years, Sara becomes his protector and inamorata. As Adam's mental state fractures, he becomes increasingly schizophrenic—a breakdown that leads him to shoot two people in separate instances. On the run, he takes to the woods, spurring the biggest manhunt in California history. As he explores a father’s legacy of violence and his powerlessness in relating to his equally violent son, T. C. Boyle offers unparalleled psychological insights into the American psyche. Inspired by a true story, The Harder They Come is a devastating and indelible novel from a modern master.

The Road

The Road
Author: Cormac McCarthy
Pages: 256
ISBN: 9780307267450
Available:
Release: 2007-03-20
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

NATIONAL BESTSELLER WINNER OF THE PULITZER PRIZE The searing, post-apocalyptic novel about a father and son's fight to survive. A father and his son walk alone through burned America. Nothing moves in the ravaged landscape save the ash on the wind. It is cold enough to crack stones, and when the snow falls it is gray. The sky is dark. Their destination is the coast, although they don't know what, if anything, awaits them there. They have nothing; just a pistol to defend themselves against the lawless bands that stalk the road, the clothes they are wearing, a cart of scavenged food—and each other. The Road is the profoundly moving story of a journey. It boldly imagines a future in which no hope remains, but in which the father and his son, "each the other's world entire," are sustained by love. Awesome in the totality of its vision, it is an unflinching meditation on the worst and the best that we are capable of: ultimate destructiveness, desperate tenacity, and the tenderness that keeps two people alive in the face of total devastation. A New York Times Notable Book One of the Best Books of the Year The Boston Globe, The Christian Science Monitor, The Denver Post, The Kansas City Star, Los Angeles Times, New York, People, Rocky Mountain News, Time, The Village Voice, The Washington Post

Chicken of the Sea

Chicken of the Sea
Author: Viet Thanh Nguyen
Pages: 329
ISBN: 194421173X
Available:
Release: 2019-11-12
Editor: McSweeney's
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A band of intrepid chickens leave behind the boredom of farm life, joining the crew of the pirate ship Pitiless to seek fortune and glory on the high seas. Led by a grizzled captain into the territory of the Dog Knights, they soon learn what it means to be courageous, merciful, and not seasick quite so much of the time. A whimsical and unexpected adventure tale, Chicken of the Sea originated in the five-year-old mind of Ellison Nguyen, son of Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist Viet Thanh Nguyen; father and son committed the story to the page, then enlisted the artistic talents of Caldecott Honor winner Thi Bui and her thirteen-year-old son, Hien Bui-Stafford, to illustrate it. This unique collaboration between two generations of artists and storytellers invites you aboard for adventure, even if you're chicken. Maybe especially if you're chicken.

The Fifth Book of Peace

The Fifth Book of Peace
Author: Maxine Hong Kingston
Pages: 416
ISBN: 9780307428578
Available:
Release: 2007-12-18
Editor: Vintage
Language: en

Explanation of the Book:

A long time ago in China, there existed three Books of Peace that proved so threatening to the reigning powers that they had them burned. Many years later Maxine Hong Kingston wrote a Fourth Book of Peace, but it too was burned--in the catastrophic Berkeley-Oakland Hills fire of 1991, a fire that coincided with the death of her father. Now in this visionary and redemptive work, Kingston completes her interrupted labor, weaving fiction and memoir into a luminous meditation on war and peace, devastation and renewal.