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The Mountains Sing

The Mountains Sing

Author(s): Que Mai Phan Nguyen

Location(s): Vietnam

Genre(s): Fiction

Era(s): Second half 20th Century

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An intimate, stirring portrait of a country at war and a family’s battle to survive

With the epic sweep of Min Jin Lee’s Pachinko and the lyrical beauty of Vaddey Ratner’s In the Shadow of the Banyan, The Mountains Sing tells the enveloping, multi-generational tale of the Trần family, set against the backdrop of the Việt Nam War.

Hà Nội, 1972. Hương and her grandmother, Trần Diệu Lan, cling to one another in their improvised shelter as American bombs fall, while her father and mother leave to fight in a war that is tearing not just her country but her family apart. For Trần Diệu Lan, forced to flee the family farm with her six children decades earlier as the Communist government rose to power in the North, this experience is horribly familiar. Seen through the eyes of these two unforgettable women, The Mountains Sing captures their defiance and determination, hope and unexpected joy.

Celebrated Vietnamese poet Nguyễn’s richly lyrical debut weaves between the lives of grandmother and granddaughter to paint a unique picture of the turbulent twentieth-century in Việt Nam. This is the story of a country pushed to breaking point, and a family who refuse to give in.

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