‘The Demon Who Peddled Longing’ opens with a fisher woman finding 19 year old, Nam, usually referred to as ‘the boy” in the river, badly hurt. She tak‘The Demon Who Peddled Longing’ opens with a fisher woman finding 19 year old, Nam, usually referred to as ‘the boy” in the river, badly hurt. She takes him in and nurses him back to health. He stays and works for her for awhile but eventually moves on.
Nam is on a mission to find the two brothers who raped and killed his cousin. When asked where he is heading, he just tells people that he is heading south to find work. He eventually finds the brothers that he is looking for, to avenge his cousins’ death but that isn’t really the main part of the novel.
‘The Demon Who Peddled Longing’ takes place in post war Vietnam and is more about the journey Nam takes, that seems never ending and the kinds of people he meets along the way. The title is aptly named, Nam and many of the characters have demons lurking and they are longing. Most seem to just be getting by but know it’s too much to be happy, to strive for a better life.
This is the second book I have read by Khanh Ha and is does not disappoint. His poetic prose is still hypnotic and I had a hard time putting the book down. He writes almost like he is in a trance, observing what he writes first hand. I don’t really know how else to explain it. He takes his readers on incredible journeys through his homeland, Vietnam. Getting a taste of the culture and people. He examines those deep dark places most would try to avoid yet, you can’t help but follow.
I am not over emphasizing how good a writer Ha is, too me, he is a literary genius! His books may be a bit too brutal for high school reading but should be in college curriculum for literary study! Don’t let this scare you, his books are very accessible to most readers who love literary fiction and multicultural fiction. ‘The Demon Who Peddled Longing’ is a must read!...more
15 year old Karen is exploring the sea side when she finds an ancient looking mirror in the sand. Now everyone knows that if you find an old mirror, d15 year old Karen is exploring the sea side when she finds an ancient looking mirror in the sand. Now everyone knows that if you find an old mirror, do not stare into it. Of course Karen does and she is transported through time to ancient Rome. Some solders happen upon her and believe she is a runaway slave.