Synopses & Reviews
Against the Flood caused a sensation in Viet Nam when it was published in 1999 because of its controversial description of sex and politics in that country. The plot revolves around a writer, Khiem, whose book is banned and who is publicly censured by his contemporaries, while the tangled relationships in his own circle involve drug-trafficking and adultery. His lover, a pretty and intelligent woman, is slandered and sacked from her job. She leaves Hanoi and becomes involved in opium traffic in an attempt to investigate it, but is arrested before she can report the activities to the police. His wife, a smuggler, has an extramarital affair and dies during an abortion. Khiem and his lover are finally reunited after a long separation. The novel presents a vivid picture of contemporary Vietnamese society, examining the dramatic tensions inherent in a changing society, and is imbued with the themes of friendship, love, and betrayal.
"...a vivid and compelling portrait of life in Vietnam today." -- Los Angeles Times
"Themes of integrity, idealism, love, friendship, art, opportunity, corruption, and betrayal run throughout this probing vision..." -- Publishers Weekly
"At its core, the book delivers a poetic defense of literature as a tool for uncovering the truth." -- The Weekly Alibi
About the Author
Ma Van Khang was born in Hanoi, Vietnam. He is the author of several novels and the winner of the 2012 Vietnamese State Award for literature and the arts.
Phan Thanh Hao is a poet and translator.
Wayne Karlin holds the title of Professor of Languages and Literature at the College of Southern Maryland and has published seven novels.