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The Girl in the Picture: The Story of Kim Phuc, the Photograph, and the Vietnam War Paperback – August 1, 2001
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Top Customer Reviews
A previous review suggests it is more fiction than fact, yet it's unclear how the reviewer could come to that conclusion about a book that hasn't yet been released. Disclosure: I know Denise Chong and have actually read an early copy. She tears down some of the myths the reviewer suggests are being perpetrated. Chong makes it clear the attack was not done by Americans and was a mistake. And she also raises questions about the role of the American soldier who claimed responsibility for the attack.
This book offers fascinating insights into ordinary life in Vietnam during the war and Kim Phuc's later odyssey through Cuba and Moscow to Canada. During her research trips to Vietnam, Chong's eye for detail, which came across so clearly in "The Concubine's Children," again brings a story to life. The account of the napalm attack itself and Kim's recovery from such horrible burns is a heart-wrenching drama that will bring many readers to tears. This is one of the must-read books of the year.
It is a very human story, the suffering of one girl in particular, but also her family, and she is one of many. The book gives a concise account of the historical background to the bombing. It will serve as a good introduction to those that do not know about these events, and will be useful for visitors to Vietnam.
The author also narrates the stories of members of Kim Phuc's family and their struggle for existence during those hard times. I've been to Vietnam, including Saigon, not far from where the awful atrocity took place, so I feel a closeness to the place. I saw the famous photograph in the American War Crimes Museum (now renamed) in Saigon.
My life in Bali cannot compare to Kim Phuc's, but I understand a little some of her family's difficulties - the paranoid fear of Communism in the 1960s (there was an alleged Communist coup in Indonesia in 1965), the hard work involved in running a small restaurant (I started mine from scratch in 1974 just like Kim's mother did) and the hassles of dealing with officials (the author describes these well).
It is doubly distressing that Kim Phuc was so cruelly used and cheated by others for their own purposes. Governments, officials, journalists. One can only have contempt for them and wish Kim Phuc a better life in Canada.
I would certainly recommend this book to anyone. It has 370 pages and there are several pages of photographs.
But these weaknesses do not damage the overall success of the book, because Kim's life story is definitely compelling, and her postwar struggles are especially informative. We learn about the wartime travails of Kim's middle-class Vietnamese family, culminating in the horrific day when she was injured and barely survived. Kim has suffered through chronic pain and constant health problems stemming from here severe napalm burns. Meanwhile the incompetent new Communist regime in Vietnam used her for years as a pawn in propaganda schemes, and ruined her once successful family.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Excellent reading. I am a Vietnam Veteran, I lived the times and found the book very healing.Published 27 days ago by Pat
well written and good story - great to understand the culture and complexities of Vietnam from a new perspectivePublished 1 month ago by dutch
My heart remains heavy after reading this well-written gut-wrenching yet inspiring work. Kim Phuc's spirit of resilience and forgiveness shines through on every page.Published 2 months ago by Maurice Ashley
The version I got was photocopied and bound to look like a book. Narrative was still excellent.Published 7 months ago by simonsays247
A life-changing must read! Kim's story is one which reaches across all borders and cultures to grasp the infinite wisdom and love of God, working out His ultimate plan of love and... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Jeffrey L. Whittaker
Just an amazing look into a troubled time; and I love that Kim emerged triumphant from her unbearable challenges.Published 11 months ago by S. L. Demaya
I've read the book twice. The second time after Kim herself began sharing her recollection of several events with me that are mentioned in the book. Read morePublished 18 months ago by Kindle Customer