Breathe To Read

Breathe To Read

Monday, April 29, 2019

Read The World - Vietnam - The Sorrows Of War

Book: The Sorrows of War
Author: Bao Ninh
Pages: 233
Book takes place in the country: YES
Author is from the country: YES
I have visited: NO

This is my 53rd read for the year

I am marathoning through Grey's Anatomy from the beginning, and this weekend I went to the final Avenger's movie and all of these things are getting in the way of my reading.  I need to refocus!  This read the world challenge has been my hardest yet, and I can tell you - I haven't come across a lot of "fun" reads, so my motivation has been low.  The reads are often heavy and sad - even when they are fictional.  But I am learning a lot about the countries, so that keeps me going.

This is a fictional story about a man named Kien.  It is the retelling of his time during the Vietnam war.  It covers the 10 years he was involved in the war, all the horrors he saw, the friends he made.  It also circles around the love of his life and how they keep finding each other during that time.  He is one of the only survivors out of his 5000 men battilion and he relives it later in his life as he puts all of his experience down on paper.

Kein is writing his story years after the war ended.  He mixes the past and the present without any concern for the timeline.  The book has no chapters, but just runs as one continuous story of how Kein felt at different points during the war.  It is like he is looking for atonement for what happened during those 10 years.

This was a good book.  Even without separated chapters, I thought it was well written and flowed nicely.  It is a short book, so I finished it quickly.  

I suggest this one.  I think if you have some interest in the Vietnam war, but don't want to read a heavy non-fiction retelling, this would be a good one.  It isn't particularly political but more of how war impacts the soldiers and the citizens.  

Stars: 4


  1. My Dad was in Vietnam so I always want to read more but at the same time I'm terrified by what I might read in a nonfiction. That war was just...I can't even be coherent about it, I'll add this to my look in the library list for sure and I hope there are some light hearted reads your way!

    1. I hear you. I can't imagine the stories he probably has. And I agree - I am not sure I want to read non-fiction about it either.