Dogs at the Perimeter: A Novel
The first novel by the Man Booker Prize shortlisted author Madeleine Thien— “beautiful, deeply moving . . . addresses universal questions” (The Independent).
Set in Cambodia during the regime of the-Khmer Rouge and in present day Montreal, Dogs at the Perimeter tells the story of Janie, who as a child experiences the terrible violence carried out by the Khmer Rouge and loses everything she ho/>Set(The ...more
Haunted by the memories of the past, and the atrocities committed at the hand of the Khmer Rouge, Janie falls apart. Leaving her husband and youn ...more
The story is held together by Janie, who was born in Cambodia but eventually escaped and lives in Canada with a husband and son she is separated from. She wor ...more
So this is how it feels, when you read a book you'd like to write, a book that exposes a similar experience or feeling. We war survivors are a disjointed group, traversing normalcy while carrying the ones we left behind, the ones who left us behind. Sometimes we find each other, the similarly wounded, and we talk about the past, careful to avoid the details; we generalize stories because remembering ...more
Like Elliot Perlman's The Street Sweeper, and Kim Scott's That Deadman Dance, this feels like one of those stories that absolutely needs to be told. I had no idea of the scope of the genocide committed at the hands of Cambodia's K ...more
Sometimes confusing, the splintered arc of the story mimics the confusion of war and emphasizes the insidious reach of what is vaguely known as post traumatic stress disorder. There's hope in the message I got, that in spite of the unspeakable things that war inflicts upon people, inner peace is possible when we face our demons rather than try to deny them.
‘I remembered beauty. Long ago, it had not seemed necessary to note its presence, to memorize it, to set the dogs out at the perimeter.’
This was my first Madeleine Thein book, not having read her more famous Do Not Say We Have Nothing and although I admired the writing and was interested in learning about the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia, this wasn’t quite as successful as I expected.
The book is initially set in Canada, where Janie a former Cambodian citizen who fled the countr/> ...more
The story is set in 2005 in Canada and is told in first person account by the protagonist, Janie, a Cambodian woman who has separated from her patient husband Navin and kind-hearted son Kiri. Janie is a lost soul, with an unresolved past stemming from her early experiences as a victim o ...more
Thien worked to align a narrative of diasporic life in modern and quiet Canada, with the roots of internecine chaos from a 1970s Cambodian childhood. She skims the surface of the horrors at t ...more
Annabel Lyon said "Madeline Thien write ...more
If only Dogs at the Perimeter was dystopian fiction. Yet historically, Thien’s searing novel really did happen. Which makes her sensitive approach to telling horrific history more laudable.
Thien focuses on the psychic trauma to survivors of unimaginable horrors when “nothing seemed real.” ...more
Once again, I find myself not really knowing what to say about a book depicting the aftermath of the Cambodian Killing Fields. Contrary to "The Disappeared" (*) however, Madeleine Thien's protagonist is not a young Canadian girl in love, but a woman that has escaped Cambodia as a child and is now being haunted by memories.
Janie has built a life for herself, working at a Brain Research Centre, and having a husband and a ...more
Loosely, it is about the separation, dislocation and loss of identity caused by the Khmer Rouge rule in Cambodia. We open in Vancouver with a woman, Janie, a neurological researcher looking for her colleague, Hiroji who has gone missing some three months earlier. Both Janie and Hiroji have ties to Cambodia – for Janie, it was the country of her childhood; for Hiroji it is where his brother disappeared in 1975.
What follows are a seri ...more