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Preview — The Lotus Eaters by Tatjana Soli
The Lotus Eaters
Ona stifling day in 1975, the North Vietnamese army is poised to roll into Saigon. As the fall of the city begins, two lovers make their way through the streets to escape to a new life. Helen...more
The novel focuses on Hel...more
This one punched me deep in my gut....I literally sobbed for 15 minutes after I finished the last page. All of these emotions were swirling within my chest and brain and I needed to release them with a good cry. I am just beginning to understand why my two uncles that served in Vietnam never spoke of their experience. Who would want to revisit those horrors, to have those images dredged up again, to make them real once more? I felt shell-shocked and wounded deep in my soul by the evi...more
I'm glad I stayed with th...more
I didn’t find anything about the relationships believable. I didn’t feel the passion or tenderness or compassion or love between any of them. The mark of good writing is that the author wil...more
“Every good war picture is an antiwar picture. Why am I here otherwise?”
This was a wonderful book to read, one of the best of the many books I have read about Vietnam. It combines the horror of war with the beauty of the Vietnamese countryside; you experience the city, the jungle, the village. There is the strange confluence of periods of love and tenderness and peace with the overarching unpredictability of a war zone. It is a story about love, love of place, love of self, love of danger. And,...more
But the perfect title...more
Tatjana Soli’s main character, gutsy Helen Adams, is a photographer who feeds on the adrenalin rush of covering the war in Vietnam – an unwinnable war in which it is not unusual for a native Vietnamese t...more
Helen Adams is an American photojournalist in war-torn Vietnam and through the lens of a camera she captures the violence and horrors of war, burned villages and mangled and charred bodies. However, amidst the tragedy Helen find...more
This was a historical fiction work about the Vietnam War. The main character is a female photographer who kinda stumbles into becoming a star photographer of the war, and how living amid the war, and in Vietnam shaped and changed her life.
The book was okay, as it took me awhile to sort of get into it. I kept hoping for more. The writing was fine, as...more
All they now wanted was to stay where they were with the Lotus-eaters, to browse on the lotus, and to forget all thoughts of return.
Homer, The Odyssey as quoted in The Lotus Eaters.
In chapter one, photojournalist Helen Adams is preparing to leave Vietnam during the 1975 evacuation. Chapter two starts in 1963 with Linh, a former Vietnamese soldier, now an assistant to photojournalist Darrow. Both eventually meet Helen and become her friends, her life, and Vietnam becomes her home in...more
The book is set during the Vietnam War and is centered on Helen, an American woman photojournalist and her two lovers--Darrow, an American, Linh, a Vietna...more
This is a hard one for me to review. Basically, I'd rate it a 3.5 stars but since i can't, I'll bump it up to 4 stars. For most of the story, I was turned off by the focus of a love story/triangle. I went into the book...more
The novel opens as the US troops are pulling out of Vietnam in 1975, and photojournalist Helen Adams is walking the streets of Saigon, feeling familiar and close to the city. She's been here over a decade, and is conflicted about leaving this now refugee town to go back to the states.
She walks to the apartment she shares with her lover and also photographer, Linh, a Vietnamese who has been injured. She is anxious...more
Helen Adams is one of the first female photojournalists in Vietnam during the mid-sixties. She went to Vietnam following...more
The book's cover doesn't do justice to the story.
Watching the Vietnam War from our living rooms and looking at the photos plastered almost daily in magazines and newspapers, you began to wonder who could watch the events, take the ph...more
“When they were fired on, the advisers called down airpower, but it dropped short, falling on them and civilians. A free-for-all cluste...more
I have tirelessly suggested The Lotus Eaters for consideration to all of my reading groups. (Currently I am a member of four.) Finally it was chosen and read for the November meeting of the One Book at a Time group. We meet at a Mexican restaurant in Sunland, CA. We drink margaritas, iced tea and diet coke. We all talk at once. We are writers, lawyers and ex-school teachers. Not everyone finishes their books but the ones who did finish The Lotus Eaters were as enthralled as I was.
The novel opens...more
I've read very little about the Vietnam War save Tim O'Brien's The Things They Carried, but I al...more
To say that it's a story about Vietnam discredits the book; this is not a solider's tale, not an obvious story about the horrors of war. Helen Adams launches herself into the war with...more
This is an investment kind of book. You invest the time and heart and it will pay off. A technically tedious read for me but the perseverance to finish the book was worth it. A superb debut by Ms Soli. She captured a searing perspective of a historical event by telling the story through the fictional lens of a camera and heart of outsiders.
In this novel fashion, humanity amidst a war was played out through Helen's point of view that span a decade. I got a taste of the character of the peop...more
Shown through the eyes of three different characters: Helen, one of few women photojournalists in Vietnam, young and inexperienced; Sam, a dark,...more