to read about Vietnam War

best book about Vietnam

Before and after visiting Vietnam, you may want to learn more about our country, but a textbook can be daunting and quite frankly, boring. In my opinion though, some literary works and especially when turned into films are the breath of history reflecting. it’s true reality and in an eye opening form that it’s hard to resist . There are plenty of best books to read about Vietnam War. But’s here’s 3 I would like to recommend, that I often share with my guests who are taking the trip from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City. Let’s get started


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The Lover – one of best books to read about French Colony in Vietnam

The lover - one of best books to read about vietnam war

The lover is written by Marguerite Duras (1914-1996), who lived near to Saigon, Vietnam; she was the only daughter of two teachers who had responded to a campaign by the French government encouraging French people to settle in the colony. Duras’s father fell ill soon after their arrival and returned to France, where he died. After his death, her mother remained in Indochina with her three children. The family lived in relative poverty after her mother made a bad investment in an isolated property and area of rice farmland in Sadec.

Duras was the author of many novels, plays, films, interviews, essays, and works of short fiction, including her best-selling, highly fictionalized autobiographical work L’Amant (1984), translated into English as The Lover, which describes her youthful affair with a Chinese-Vietnamese man based on her true love story. It has been translated to 43 languages and was awarded the 1984 Prix Goncourt. It was adapted to film in 1992 as The Lover – by American film-director Jean-Jacques Annaud. Not for the faint hearted, this is a passionate and revealing story of two cultures and how they come together.

Why this one of best books to read about Vietnam War ?

This book describes exactly how Saigon – Cholon – Mekong delta was like for the Colonial French in Vietnam through a French girl’s eyes. There are many tour companies wo arrange itineraries so you can visit the ancient house – Huynh Thuy le (the home of the real man who inspired her to write the book)
Some itineraries even take you from the real house in Sa Dec to the on used for the filming in Can Tho by boat, including a cruise. Not only visiting where the love begins; but also crossing the tributaries of The Mekong River.


The 2nd best books to read about Vietnam War

Quiet American is written by Graham Greene (1904 – 1991), who was an English novelist regarded by many as one of the greatest writers of the 20th century. He was a long-term guest in room 214 of the Continental Hotel which is located next to The Saigon Opera House.
Narrated in the first person by journalist Thomas Fowler, the novel depicts the breakdown of French colonialism in Vietnam and early American involvement in the Vietnam War. A subplot concerns a love triangle between Fowler, an American CIA agent named Alden Pyle, and Phuong, a young Vietnamese dancer. The novel implicitly questions the foundations of growing American involvement in Vietnam in the 1950s and is unique in its exploration of the subject topic through the links among its three main characters – Fowler, Pyle and Phuong.

Why this one of best books to read about Vietnam War ?

Quiet American - one of the best books to read about Vietnam War

Quiet American

This novel links the French colony to the very beginning of American occupation in Vietnam. It also describes objectively how Vietnam looks through a British journalist’s eyes. You can see Saigon now & then after your visit and read it by wandering around or book a city tour. The novel suggests a few places: Catinat Street (Đồng Khởi Street), Continential Hotel, Saigon Opera House, Majestic Hotel, Nguyện Huệ, the first United States Embassy, Chinatown, & CaoDai religion.

The 3rd best books to read about Vietnam War

When Heaven and Earth Changed Places is a 1989 memoir by Le Ly Hayslip about her childhood during the Vietnam War, her escape to the United States, and her return to visit Vietnam 16 years later. The Oliver Stone film Heaven & Earth was based on this memoir.
The story began during Le ly’s childhood in a small village in central Vietnam. Her village was along the fault line between the north and south of Vietnam, with shifting allegiances in the village leading to constant tension. After escaping from her village to Saigon & Danang, she became a maid, a black-market vendor, a waitress, a hospital worker… Hayslip left for San Diego, California in 1970.
The memoir was first published in April 1989, with a tie-in edition to accompany the release of the film Heaven & Earth in 1993 by a great famous war film-director Oliver Stone & and starring Tommy Lee Jones, Haing S. Ngor, Joan Chen, and Hiep Thi Le.

When Heaven and Earth Changed Places

best book about Vietnam

Why this one of best books to read about Vietnam War ?

This memoir as great documentary all about history, culture, religion and Vietnam War by a girl who grew up in Vietnam at a very sensitive era known as DMZ 17 ° parallel, Bến Hải river close to Huế & Hoi An. Please, read the book first & watch the film later. Lely Hayslip is a compelling witness of the time, telling you more hints about the end of Vietnam War.

Overall comments about 3 best books to read about Vietnam War

In your trip through our country, you will pass many places concerned with the stories we have chosen here. Instead of reading the very hard content of conventional history and biographical books, why not try our suggestions and learn more about real life along the way, as there are many many books on the market, but these give a real feel for the real country, it’s people and life as it truly was.
If you like this post, don’t forget to share ur website with your friends. This is a non-commercial website offering travel tips free of charge. We are also very experienced in offering tours concerned with the information concerned with the content in these books, so please do not hesitate to contact us if you would like to know more about tours. And when you’ve read them, please let us know which is your favourite books to read about Vietnam War ?

Happy reading and we look forward to welcoming you to Vietnam soon.


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