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The Land I Lost: Adventures of a Boy in Vietnam (Harper Trophy Book) Paperback – November 4, 1986
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From Publishers Weekly
The author grew up in a hamlet in the central highlands of Vietnam, and these are his stories of that childhood. PW called it "a collection of beautifully written, true stories of growing up, of earthy humorous happenings and memories. Mai's action-filled illustrations impressively evoke a land physically lost to both author and artist but very much alive in this compelling volume."
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"This is first-person narrative brims with life."--" School Library Journal
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Top customer reviews
What struck me the most about this book was the author's deep connection to all generations of his family (mother, father, sister, grandmother, cousin) and his extensive knowledge of the natural world in which he lived. I learned so much about so many creatures I have never encountered. I kept wishing the book had been longer.
Quang Nhuong Huynh lead such an interesting life. I would like to know more about his adult life and army service with the South Vietnamese. Sadly, that will not be possible (even though he has several unpublished pieces), as I found that he died in 2001.
For those parents who don't review books before their children read them, you may want to know that opium is mentioned in the book. It was not at all offensive, actually quite interesting. But I wanted mention this in case your children start asking questions about opium.
5/1/10 Edited to correct spelling.
Huynh describes his life in a village on a riverbank, with a jungle and mountains nearby. The book is divided up into several short vignettes that describe the lives of the people and animals of this world. Although the danger and violence of some sections may be upsetting to some readers, I get the sense that the author is trying to present a truthful portrait of rural life.
There are accounts of many interesting people, such as Huynh's opera loving, karate fighting grandmother. But I was particularly fascinated by the many accounts of the domestic and wild animals of Huynh's homeland. I loved the descriptions of animal behavior and the accounts of the interactions between animals and people, between animals of the same species, and between animals of different species. We meet monkeys, otters, a fearsome crocodile, and many other creatures. It's a rich tapestry of life that is described vividly by the author. One of the most memorable animal characters is Huynh's water buffalo, Tank, a creature of great strength, loyalty, and courage.
This is a wonderful book that is written in a very effective, straightforward style that is ultimately quite poignant. It's sort of like a Vietnamese response to Laura Ingalls Wilder's beloved "Little House" books. I recommend "The Land I Lost" to readers of all ages.
But why is this book called "The Land I Lost." That is what you have to think about. The end of the last chapter, a battle was going on, so I think that's why the author said land I lost... I didn't like the way the author wrote about the battle story, because it was really short, so it didn't make me understand why they lost their land.
But I could see the other ways of life like the hamlet villagers. These days everybody sits on their chair and plays computer games, by this time, instead computer games we can see the difference between rural and urban and how they relate with nature and their given environment. I like most of the book, except the battle part of the story.
I like this book because I'm interested on how the people from past live. I found that this book is good for all of ages, especially for those of you who are still using English as a second language.
Most recent customer reviews
However, there are 2 violent pages (dealing with monkey killing infant, and people killing monkey).Read more