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book discussions > May 2014 - In the Shadow of the Banyan Discussion SPOILERS

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message 1: by Mercedes (new)

Mercedes (mercysbookishmusings) | 103 comments Mod
Use this thread to chat about the book once you've read it! Beware - there will be spoilers here!


Brown Girl Reading Just read the first 100 pages in one sitting yesterday and am flabbergasted at how well this woman writes in English. She has captured all of the fear, uncertainty, and gritty details of this horrible historical blight on Cambodia, which is not often spoken of. I don't usually pick up books like this because the emotion and horrors depress me profoundly. However it is a very interesting read and to see the take over of the cities and how the people were as masses inevitably to some of their deaths is frightening.


message 3: by Lauren (new)

Lauren (glowingreviews90) | 19 comments Didi wrote: "Just read the first 100 pages in one sitting yesterday and am flabbergasted at how well this woman writes in English. She has captured all of the fear, uncertainty, and gritty details of this horri..."

I'm currently on page 137 and I'm totally blown away! Such lyrical prose, but yet so heavy. I'm having a difficult time getting through it, like you said.


Brown Girl Reading I'm not having difficulty at all getting through it. It's brilliantly and beautifully written. The subtleties are the details the reader shouldn't ignore. I only have 90 more pages to read.


message 5: by NoRa (new)

NoRa I cant finish this book i stopped a few pages after Raami's father was taken away. I find it too descriptive at times, or maybe its just that I am not too familiar with the subject matter.


Brown Girl Reading That's too bad because it's wheel worth the read and can teach about this tragic event which has carried Cambodia's history. The story is beautifully written... I read it in 3 and a half days.


message 7: by Helena (new)

Helena (willowtreemornings) I always find it interesting when people find it difficult to read books like this. I don't know, maybe I'm just insensitive (desensitized?) or something, but I don't think I've ever had that problem. To me it's fascinating, albeit in a somewhat depressing way, to realize what other human beings who are in so many respects just like me are capable of living through. It makes me wonder how I would fare comparatively in such a situation - I fear I'd be someone who would just give up on life, but maybe there is something in the "human spirit" that inevitably would make most of us want to go on despite tragedy. I dunno, that question's part of the appeal to me in these kinds of novels/memoirs, besides the fact that I'm learning about history. But I do appreciate how it could be difficult.


message 8: by Helena (new)

Helena (willowtreemornings) Also, has anyone read the Author's Note? That bit where Ratner talks about meeting the blind beggar with her father is one of my favourite things I've ever read.


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