Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls
eBook (PDF), 223 Pages
The lives of eight-year-old Quan Phoc in Phnom Penh and two-year-old Minh Chau Thieu in Saigon change radically when the two cities fall to the Communists in 1975. The Khmer Rouge send Quan’s family to a collective farm in the distant countryside. Minh Chau’s family attempts unsuccessfully to flee Saigon. Her father, a South Vietnamese army officer is sent to a re-education camp and the rest of the family is imprisoned Both children escape Indochina in 1978, aided unexpectedly by the kindness of others. In Pulau Bidong camp in Malaysia, Quan becomes Minh Chau's protector, a role that he will play intermittently for the rest of his life. When Minh Chau's family is resettled in Canada, Quan is left behind. At that point, Quan's protector role passes temporarily to Mathieu Hibou, a soft-spoken university student from New Carlisle, Quebec.
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3 People Reviewed This Product
Oct 24, 2011The novel really is a wonderful, touching tale of how the human spirit overcomes adversity. In the style of Hemingway, the author Con Cú has mastered the art of simplicity and economy of words, without forgoing the occasional stroke of poetic genius. I particularly liked the character of Minh Chau. Her child-like charm endures into her adult life enchanting everyone around her, even if it only to mask the deep scars that she bears within her. Love and love-making in this novel is truly refreshing. Although somewhat graphic at times, it clearly brings out the joy of two people finding each other in a synergy of the physical and spiritual. In that sense, it introduces a sense of realism about human sexuality and emotions that is often absent in modern literature. If the author has made one error, it is in making the character of Mathieu Hibou too ideal, too pure of thought and action. Or perhaps, there really are some Mathieu Hibous in this world, hidden behind their soft-spoken... More > and stoic manners. The character of Quan reveals that of the modern man - violent but with a cause, faithless from the inadequacy to completely love and fearless in self-sacrifice. For some Quan will be seen as a rogue, albeit a loveable one. For most readers, Quan's failings will be filtered out by the lense of his childhood tragedy and courageous behaviour. While Con Cú's style is promising, especially for a first-time author, his use of dialogue lacks imagination and the last third of the novel seems at times rushed compared to the very strong chapters in Vietnam, Cambodia, Malaysia, Thailand and Quebec City. Still, I did enjoy the chapter in my home community of Cultus Lake. Con Cú managed to capture the beauty of our beautiful lake community nestled between the mountains and the Douglas fir forests. All told, Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls is a good read with perhaps the trappings of an enduring and endearing tale that merits a wide readership.< Less
Oct 18, 2011I love this book. The detail expressed in the different countries evokes a true sende of being there. Wonderful character development.
Oct 15, 2011This is a truly remarkable book. It takes the reader on the life journey of two young children, Minh Chau and Quan. In the Pulau Bidong refugee camp in Malaysia, the children meet and help each other overcome their childhood traumas. It is also the touching story of Mathieu Hibou, who befriends the family of Minh Chau, and instills in the young girl a pride and love of her new country, Canada. After tragedy robs Mathieu of what is most dear to him, it is Minh Chau who restores Mathieu's passion for life and Quan who saves Mathieu from certain death.
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- I.T. Shaw (Standard Copyright License)
- First Edition
- Deux Voiliers Publishing
- September 27, 2011
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- File Size
- 851.93 KB
- Product ID
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