Apr 8, 2019

Book Tour/Review: Mrs. Rossi's Dream by Khanh Ha



Mrs. Rossi’s Dream by Khanh Ha

Publisher:  The Permanent Press (March 1, 2019)
Category: Historical Fiction, Vietnam, Literary Fiction, Multicultural
Print and ebook, 312 pages
About: Mrs. Rossi, a retired high school principal from Maryland, travels to Vietnam with her adopted Vietnamese daughter Chi Lan, and is taken around the countryside by the narrator of the book, Giang, who works at their roadside inn as a driver.
During the Vietnam War, Giang defected from the north  and was sent to a reform camp for ten years, after which he served in the South Vietnamese army. In the book, he gives tours of the area to Mrs. Rossi and helps her to search for the remains of her son, an American who died in 1966-1967 during the war.

The exact place where Mrs. Rossi's son died is unknown, so Giang takes her to Military Zone 9, an approximate and possible location. It is now a vast wet woodland where families from the north and south have come to search for the bones of their dead. 

Giang tries to subtly tell Mrs. Rossi that soldiers' remains, after 20 years, are now scattered bones, and not identifiable one from the other in the jungle environment. Still, she persists.

Recommendation: In the book, we learn about the history of Vietnam and the consequences of colonization and occupation by the Chinese and the  French, and then by the Americans during the war. We learn also about the beauty of the land, the river, white water lilies floating on the water, the dramatic contrast with death and destruction of the war. 

We learn about the Vietnamese point of view of the war, their experiences, their language, history, the ghosts and the bones scattered throughout the country.  

In the end, Giang makes a confession to Mrs. Rossi, and they both weep for their losses, for their sadness, and both come to find sorrow, forgiveness, and common ground. 

Summary: A moving story, both sad and exhilarating in parts,  that is also a history and a description of a country torn by war and occupation over centuries, and an emotional journey of a mother's search for and memories of her son.

Rating: 5/5

Thanks to Teddy Rose and Virtual Author Book Tours for an ebook for this book tour. 

About Khanh HaMrs. Rossi’s Dream by Khanh Ha

Award winning author, Khanh Ha is the author of Flesh (Black Heron Press) and The Demon Who Peddled Longing (Underground Voices).
 He is a seven-time Pushcart nominee, a Best Indie Lit New England nominee, twice a finalist of The William Faulkner-Wisdom Creative Writing Award, and the recipient of Sand Hills Prize for Best Fiction, and Greensboro Review’s Robert Watson Literary Prize in fiction. The Demon Who Peddled Longing was honored by Shelf Unbound as a Notable Indie Book. 
Ha graduated from Ohio University with a bachelor’s degree in journalism.
Website: http://www.authorkhanhha.com
Twitter: https://twitter.com/authorkhanhha
Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/authorkhanhha
Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/khanhha

Mrs. Rossi’s Dream available at AmazonBarnesandNoble

Enter to win a print copy or an ebook: https://www.virtualauthorbooktours.com/mrs-rossis-dream-by-khanh-ha-on-tour/

3 comments:

Teddy Rose said...

I'm so glad you enjoyed 'Mrs. Rossi's Dream'! Thanks for hosting!

Deb Nance at Readerbuzz said...

What a powerful story!

Buried In Print said...

I appreciated reading this very much as well, particularly seeing how devastating the losses remain, despite the time that had passed, without resolution.

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