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In the Shadow of the Banyan

by

In the Shadow of the Banyan Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

This “unputdownable” (Better Homes and Gardens) New York Times bestselling novel tells the powerful and inspiring story of a girl who comes of age during the Cambodian genocide.

In the Shadow of the Banyan is an unforgettable celebration of innocence and the transcendent power of imagination, a work Little Bee author Chris Cleave calls “one of the most extraordinary acts of storytelling I have ever encountered…utterly heartbreaking and impossibly beautiful.”

For seven-year-old Raami, the collapse of her childhood world begins with the footsteps of her father returning home in the early dawn hours, bringing details of the misery and upheaval in the streets of Cambodia’s capital city. It is March of 1975, and the civil war between the US-backed government and the Khmer Rouge insurgency has reached its climax. Soon her family’s life of carefully guarded royal privilege is swept up in the chaos of revolution. Over the next four years, as Raami endures the deaths of loved ones, starvation, and labor camp, she clings to the only remaining vestige of childhood — the mythical legends and poems her father told her. In a climate of systematic violence where memory is sickness and justification for execution, Raami fights for her improbable survival.

With stunningly lyrical prose and instantly beloved characters, In the Shadow of the Banyan is “a tale of perseverance, hope, and the drive toward life” (The Washington Post).

Review:

“Lyrical....It’s Raami’s mother who will stay in your heart....Somehow she retains the will to survive and the strength to help others, fiercely telling her daughter, ‘Remember who you are.’” People

Review:

“How is it that so much of this bleak novel is full of beauty, even joy?...What is remarkable, and honorable, here is the absence of anger, and the capacity — seemingly infinite — for empathy.” New York Times Book Review (Editors' Choice)

Review:

“The horrors committed by Cambodia's Khmer Rouge, as experienced by one extremely resilient girl. A brutal novel, lyrically told.” O, The Oprah Magazine

Review:

“A tale of perseverance, hope and the drive toward life.” The Washington Post

Review:

“Humanity...shines through in her storytelling.” The Wall Street Journal

Review:

“For all the atrocities witnessed and hardships experienced, Ratner’s story is filled to an even larger extent with opportunism and beauty. Ratner’s gift is her exquisite descriptions of the careful details of daily life...Ratner describes her desire to memorialize the loved ones she lost with an enduring work of art. She has done just that; hers is a beautiful tale with considerable poetry and restraint. In the Shadow of the Banyan is an important novel, written by a survivor with unexpected grace and eloquence.” Audrey Magazine

Review:

“The powerful story of how even the most brutal regime lacked the power of a father’s love for his daughter.” The Daily Beast

Review:

“Gorgeous...Ratner bears witness to the unyielding human spirit.” Washingtonian

Synopsis:

You are about to read an extraordinary story. It will take you to the very depths of despair and show you unspeakable horrors. It will reveal a gorgeously rich culture struggling to survive through a furtive bow, a hidden ankle bracelet, fragments of remembered poetry. It will ensure that the world never forgets the atrocities committed by the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia between 1975 and 1979, when an estimated two million people lost their lives. It will give you hope, and it will confirm the power of storytelling to lift us up and help us not only survive but transcend suffering, cruelty, and loss.

For seven-year-old Raami, the shattering end of childhood begins with the footsteps of her father returning home in the early dawn hours, bringing details of the civil war that has overwhelmed the streets of Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. Soon the family’s world of carefully guarded royal privilege is swept up in the chaos of revolution and forced exodus. Over the next four years, as the Khmer Rouge attempts to strip the population of every shred of individual identity, Raami clings to the only remaining vestige of her childhood — the mythical legends and poems told to her by her father. In a climate of systematic violence where memory is sickness and justification for execution, Raami fights for her improbable survival. Displaying the author’s extraordinary gift for language, In the Shadow of the Banyan is a brilliantly wrought tale of human resilience.

Synopsis:

For seven-year-old Raami, the shattering end of childhood begins with the footsteps of her father returning home in the early dawn hours bringing details of the civil war that has overwhelmed the streets of Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. Soon the family’s world of carefully guarded royal privilege is swept up in the chaos of revolution and forced exodus. Over the next four years, Raami clings to the only remaining vestige of her childhood—the mythical legends and poems told to her by her father—and fights for her improbable survival. Displaying the author’s extraordinary gift for language, In the Shadow of the Banyan is a brilliantly wrought tale of hope and transcendence.

About the Author

Vaddey Ratner was five years old when the Khmer Rouge came to power in 1975. After four years, having endured forced labor, starvation, and near execution, she escaped while many of her family members perished.  In 1981, she arrived in the U.S. as a refugee not knowing English and, in 1990, went on to graduate as her high school class valedictorian. She is a summa cum laude graduate of Cornell University, where she specialized in Southeast Asian history and literature.  In recent years she traveled and lived in Cambodia and Southeast Asia, writing and researching, which culminated in her debut novel, In the Shadow of the Banyan. She lives in Potomac, Maryland.

Product Details

ISBN:
9781451657715
Subtitle:
A Novel
Author:
Ratner, Vaddey
Publisher:
Simon & Schuster
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
20130604
Binding:
Paperback
Language:
English
Pages:
352
Dimensions:
8.38 x 5.5 in

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Literature
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » A to Z
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Biographical
Fiction and Poetry » Literature » Coming of Age

In the Shadow of the Banyan Used Trade Paper
0 stars - 0 reviews
$10.95 In Stock
Product details 352 pages Simon & Schuster - English 9781451657715 Reviews:
"Review" by , “Lyrical....It’s Raami’s mother who will stay in your heart....Somehow she retains the will to survive and the strength to help others, fiercely telling her daughter, ‘Remember who you are.’”
"Review" by , “How is it that so much of this bleak novel is full of beauty, even joy?...What is remarkable, and honorable, here is the absence of anger, and the capacity — seemingly infinite — for empathy.”
"Review" by , “The horrors committed by Cambodia's Khmer Rouge, as experienced by one extremely resilient girl. A brutal novel, lyrically told.”
"Review" by , “A tale of perseverance, hope and the drive toward life.”
"Review" by , “Humanity...shines through in her storytelling.”
"Review" by , “For all the atrocities witnessed and hardships experienced, Ratner’s story is filled to an even larger extent with opportunism and beauty. Ratner’s gift is her exquisite descriptions of the careful details of daily life...Ratner describes her desire to memorialize the loved ones she lost with an enduring work of art. She has done just that; hers is a beautiful tale with considerable poetry and restraint. In the Shadow of the Banyan is an important novel, written by a survivor with unexpected grace and eloquence.”
"Review" by , “The powerful story of how even the most brutal regime lacked the power of a father’s love for his daughter.”
"Review" by , “Gorgeous...Ratner bears witness to the unyielding human spirit.”
"Synopsis" by , You are about to read an extraordinary story. It will take you to the very depths of despair and show you unspeakable horrors. It will reveal a gorgeously rich culture struggling to survive through a furtive bow, a hidden ankle bracelet, fragments of remembered poetry. It will ensure that the world never forgets the atrocities committed by the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia between 1975 and 1979, when an estimated two million people lost their lives. It will give you hope, and it will confirm the power of storytelling to lift us up and help us not only survive but transcend suffering, cruelty, and loss.

For seven-year-old Raami, the shattering end of childhood begins with the footsteps of her father returning home in the early dawn hours, bringing details of the civil war that has overwhelmed the streets of Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. Soon the family’s world of carefully guarded royal privilege is swept up in the chaos of revolution and forced exodus. Over the next four years, as the Khmer Rouge attempts to strip the population of every shred of individual identity, Raami clings to the only remaining vestige of her childhood — the mythical legends and poems told to her by her father. In a climate of systematic violence where memory is sickness and justification for execution, Raami fights for her improbable survival. Displaying the author’s extraordinary gift for language, In the Shadow of the Banyan is a brilliantly wrought tale of human resilience.

"Synopsis" by , For seven-year-old Raami, the shattering end of childhood begins with the footsteps of her father returning home in the early dawn hours bringing details of the civil war that has overwhelmed the streets of Phnom Penh, Cambodia’s capital. Soon the family’s world of carefully guarded royal privilege is swept up in the chaos of revolution and forced exodus. Over the next four years, Raami clings to the only remaining vestige of her childhood—the mythical legends and poems told to her by her father—and fights for her improbable survival. Displaying the author’s extraordinary gift for language, In the Shadow of the Banyan is a brilliantly wrought tale of hope and transcendence.
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