A New York Times Editors' Choice SelectionA Winner of the 2020 Lannan Literary Awards Fellowship
A Best Book of 2020: NPR's Book Concierge * PopMatters * Washington Independent Review of Books * Real Simple * The Buzz Magazine * NB Magazine * BookBrowse
" An] absorbing, stirring novel . . . that, in more than one sense, remedies history." --The New York Times Book Review "A triumph, a novelistic rendition of one of the most difficult times in Vietnamese history . . . Vast in scope and intimate in its telling . . . Moving and riveting." --VIET THANH NGUYEN, author of The Sympathizer, winner of the Pulitzer Prize
With the epic sweep of Min Jin Lee's Pachinko
or Yaa Gyasi's Homegoing
and the lyrical beauty of Vaddey Ratner's In the Shadow of the Banyan
, The Mountains Sing
tells an enveloping, multigenerational tale of the Trần family, set against the backdrop of the Việt Nam War. Trần Diệu Lan, who was born in 1920, was forced to flee her family farm with her six children during the Land Reform as the Communist government rose in the North. Years later in H Nội, her young granddaughter, Hương, comes of age as her parents and uncles head off down the Hồ Ch Minh Trail to fight in a conflict that tore apart not just her beloved country, but also her family.
Vivid, gripping, and steeped in the language and traditions of Việt Nam, The Mountains Sing
brings to life the human costs of this conflict from the point of view of the Vietnamese people themselves, while showing us the true power of kindness and hope. The Mountains Sing
is celebrated Vietnamese poet Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai's first novel in English.
About the Author
Born into the Việt Nam War in 1973, Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai grew up witnessing the war's devastation and its aftermath. She worked as a street seller and rice farmer before winning a scholarship to attend university in Australia. She is the author of eight books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction in Vietnamese, and her writing has been translated and published in more than ten countries, most recently in Norton's Inheriting the War anthology. She has been honored with the Hà Nội Writers Association's Poetry of the Year 2010 Award, the Capital's Literature & Arts Award, and First Prize - the Poetry Competition About 1,000 Years Hà Nội, among others. Quế Mai has an PhD in Creative Writing at Lancaster University, United Kingdom. She divides her time between Indonesia and Việt Nam. For more information, visit her at www.nguyenphanquemai.com.