Becks's Reviews > First They Killed My Father: A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers

First They Killed My Father by Loung Ung
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I feel the need to explain why I ended up giving this one three stars. I expected to come out of this with no less than a four star review. Ung's suffering under the Khmer Rouge is long and both physically and mentally painful. I learned a lot about the Cambodian Genocide (at least from the point of view of a child). I always wanted to keep reading and was invested in her and her family's story. That being said, the pacing had me all over the place and the writing was... okay.

I felt a little lost and confused - like I was missing parts of the story that became relevant later on. Part of this is because the story is being told from the perspective of a 5-8 year old and, understandably, she doesn't comprehend everything that's happening around her, but it could have benefited from more information concerning the larger picture. Choosing to tell her story the way she did had more drawbacks than benefits in my opinion.

The writing was great in certain spots and then really bad in others. Enough to make me question what the editors were thinking when they read it (words missing, words repeated in the same sentence, bad sentence structure), though this only seemed to be an issue toward the end.

I'm a bit disappointed. I was expecting to get more out of this memoir than I did. The book isn't that long! She easily could have expanded on certain things and still kept the book at a reasonable length. It has made me want to read and understand more about the Cambodian Genocide, but part of that is because I was left lacking explanations.
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Reading Progress

January 27, 2016 – Started Reading
January 27, 2016 – Shelved
January 29, 2016 –
page 56
February 1, 2016 –
page 106
February 3, 2016 –
page 184
February 4, 2016 – Finished Reading

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Sarah You may find more of the story as she has written two other books as part of her memoir. Lucky Child and LuLu in the Sky.

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