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1 Burnside Travel Writing- Asia

Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam

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Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam Cover

ISBN13: 9780374119744
ISBN10: 0374119740
Condition: Standard
Dustjacket: Standard
All Product Details

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Winner of the Kiriyama Pacific Rim Book Prize

A New York Times Notable Book of the Year

Winner of the Whiting Writers' Award

A Seattle Post-Intelligencer Best Book of the Year

Catfish and Mandala is the story of an American odyssey—a solo bicycle voyage around the Pacific Rim to Vietnam—made by a young Vietnamese-American man in pursuit of both his adopted homeland and his forsaken fatherland.

Andrew X. Pham was born in Vietnam and raised in California. His father had been a POW of the Vietcong; his family came to America as "boat people." Following the suicide of his sister, Pham quit his job, sold all of his possessions, and embarked on a year-long bicycle journey that took him through the Mexican desert, around a thousand-mile loop from Narita to Kyoto in Japan; and, after five months and 2,357 miles, to Saigon, where he finds "nothing familiar in the bombed-out darkness." In Vietnam, he's taken for Japanese or Korean by his countrymen, except, of course, by his relatives, who doubt that as a Vietnamese he has the stamina to complete his journey ("Only Westerners can do it"); and in the United States he's considered anything but American. A vibrant, picaresque memoir written with narrative flair and an eye-opening sense of adventure, Catfish and Mandala is an unforgettable search for cultural identity.

Book News Annotation:

Pham was born in Vietnam in 1967, moved with his family to California, and now lives in Portland, Oregon. Here he chronicles his return to Vietnam, his travels on a rickety bicycle, and his search for cultural identity. While his father's time in a communist reeducation camp is discussed, the heart of the narrative is Pham's depiction of his five- month journey in Vietnam.
Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Synopsis:

A Vietnamese Bicycle Days by a stunning new voice in American letters.

Andrew X. Pham dreamed of becoming a writer. Born in Vietnam and raised in California, he held technical jobs at United Airlines-and always carried a letter of resignation in his briefcase. His father had been a POW of the Vietcong; his family came to America as "boat people." His sister committed suicide, prompting Andrew to quit his job. He sold all of his possessions and embarked on a year-long bicycle journey that took him through the Mexican desert, where he was treated as a bueno hermano, a "good brother"; around a thousand-mile loop from Narita to Kyoto in Japan; and, after five months and 2,357 miles, to Saigon, where he finds "nothing familiar in the bombed-out darkness." In Mexico he's treated kindly as a Vietnamito, though he shouts, "I'm American, Vietnamese American!" In Vietnam, he's taken for Japanese or Korean by his countrymen, except, of course, by his relatives, who doubt that as a Vietnamese he has the stamina to complete his journey ("Only Westerners can do it"); and in the United States he's considered anything but American. A vibrant, picaresque memoir written with narrative flair and a wonderful, eye-opening sense of adventure, Catfish and Mandala is an unforgettable search for cultural identity.

About the Author

Andrew X. Pham was born in Vietnam in 1967 and moved to California with his family after the war. He lives in San Jose, California. This is his first book.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 1 comment:

B J, October 18, 2006 (view all comments by B J)
This is an excellent read that brings insight into connecting the past to the present day Vietnam. The narrative is vibrant and sensitive.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(2 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)

Product Details

ISBN:
9780374119744
Subtitle:
A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam
Author:
Pham, Andrew X.
Author:
Pham, Andrew X.
Author:
Pham, A
Author:
ndrew X.
Publisher:
Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Location:
New York :
Subject:
Description and travel
Subject:
Asia - Southeast
Subject:
Ethnic Cultures
Subject:
Vietnam
Subject:
Travel writing
Subject:
Vietnamese Americans
Subject:
Ethnic Cultures - General
Subject:
SOC043000
Subject:
General Biography
Subject:
Ethnic Studies - Asian American Studies
Subject:
Historical
Subject:
Asia - Southeast Asia
Subject:
cultural heritage
Subject:
Personal Memoirs
Subject:
People of Color
Edition Number:
1st ed.
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Abridged:
Abridged Edition
Series Volume:
v. 12, no. 1 (E)
Publication Date:
19990929
Binding:
Electronic book text in proprietary or open standard format
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Yes
Pages:
336
Dimensions:
9.3 x 6.22 x 1.28 in

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Related Subjects

Biography » General
History and Social Science » Asia » Vietnam
Sports and Outdoors » Sports and Fitness » Bicycling » Touring
Travel » Travel Writing » Asia
Travel » Travel Writing » General

Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$9.50 In Stock
Product details 336 pages Farrar Straus Giroux - English 9780374119744 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by ,
A Vietnamese Bicycle Days by a stunning new voice in American letters.

Andrew X. Pham dreamed of becoming a writer. Born in Vietnam and raised in California, he held technical jobs at United Airlines-and always carried a letter of resignation in his briefcase. His father had been a POW of the Vietcong; his family came to America as "boat people." His sister committed suicide, prompting Andrew to quit his job. He sold all of his possessions and embarked on a year-long bicycle journey that took him through the Mexican desert, where he was treated as a bueno hermano, a "good brother"; around a thousand-mile loop from Narita to Kyoto in Japan; and, after five months and 2,357 miles, to Saigon, where he finds "nothing familiar in the bombed-out darkness." In Mexico he's treated kindly as a Vietnamito, though he shouts, "I'm American, Vietnamese American!" In Vietnam, he's taken for Japanese or Korean by his countrymen, except, of course, by his relatives, who doubt that as a Vietnamese he has the stamina to complete his journey ("Only Westerners can do it"); and in the United States he's considered anything but American. A vibrant, picaresque memoir written with narrative flair and a wonderful, eye-opening sense of adventure, Catfish and Mandala is an unforgettable search for cultural identity.

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