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Viet Thanh Nguyen's debut The Sympathizer won the 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Fiction and became one of the most acclaimed novels of recent years, its author recognized as an important contemporary writer and thinker. His beautiful and deeply moving new book, The Refugees, is a collection of perfectly formed stories written over a period of twenty years. In these powerful stories set in both Vietnam and America, Nguyen paints a vivid portrait of the experience of people leading lives between two worlds, the adopted homeland and the country of birth. With the same incisiveness as in The Sympathizer, in The Refugees Viet Thanh Nguyen gives voice to the hopes and expectations of people making life-changing decisions to leave one country for another, and the rifts in identity, loyalties, romantic relationships, and family that accompany relocation. From a young Vietnamese refugee who suffers profound culture shock when he comes to live with two gay men in San Francisco, to a woman whose husband is suffering from dementia and starts to confuse her for a former lover, to a girl living in Ho Chi Minh City whose older half-sister comes back from America having seemingly accomplished everything she never will, the stories are a captivating testament to the dreams and hardships of migration. The second work of fiction by a major new voice in American letters, The Refugees is a beautifully written and sharply observed book about the aspirations of those who leave one country for another, and the relationships and desires for self-fulfillment that define our lives.
About the Author
Viet Thanh Nguyen was born in Vietnam and raised in America. He is the author of The Sympathizer, which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction, the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Fiction, the Center for Fiction First Novel Prize, the Edgar Award for First Novel, the Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature, the California Book Award for First Fiction, and the Dayton Literary Peace Prize. He is also the author of the nonfiction books Nothing Ever Dies, a finalist for the National Book Award, and Race and Resistance. The Aerol Arnold Professor of English and American Studies and Ethnicity at the University of Southern California, he lives in Los Angeles.