More Books on Vietnam

Vietnam at China Beach
Vietnam at China Beach

Destination: Vietnam

Books: The Sorrow of War by Bao Ninh

Hell in a Very Small Place and Street Without Joy by Bernard Fall

The Quiet American by Graham Greene

Today I am giving you some more book recommendations for Vietnam, and a question. Have you recently seen the Continental Hotel in Saigon? Traveler’s Bro wants to know.

I received  such wonderful responses when I asked people to recommend books on ten specific places, that I want to share some more of them.  You may have seen the books on Vietnam, recommended by Andrea Ross of Journey’s Within tours and Bed & Breakfast in Cambodia.

With the previous post on Vietnam, I forgot to include a recommendation from Wandering Eds, so here is the link to an article about the book The Sorrow of War by Bao Ninh, presented lovingly in a review by Joel Carillet.

Traveler’s Bro posted a couple of recommendations and a question for readers of this blog, and I post it in its entirety below.

“Other worthy works on Vietnam before the ‘American War’ there:  Bernard B. Fall’s  Hell in a Very Small Place and Street without Joy. These provide history lessons with literary quality. Graham Greene’s The Quiet American expresses the bitter old Euro-imperialist’s disgust with Americans’ brash optimisim about saving the Vietnamese for liberal democracy. Sadly, it can now be considered prophetic. (It led me to pay a visit to the old Continental Hotel during the late war. The open bar-veranda seemed to invite VC grenade tossing, but I was told the management bribed the bad guys to stay away. In 1969 it still had the old colonial “puka” feel about it: waiters in clean white jackets delivering cocktails to international patrons while a few miles away the war roared on. Anyone visited there recently? Has anything really changed or does it remain a restful cul-de-sac of colonial history?)”

Please let us know if you’ve been to the Continental Hotel in Saigon. And keep the recommendations coming. Thanks for all the help. We will be using reader recommendations for books on Scotland and Australia  and Sweden in upcoming posts.

Photograph by Amit K (Sydney) obtained through Flickr with permission of photographer. Click on the picture to see more by this amazine photographer.

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About Vera Marie Badertscher

A freelance writer who loves to travel. When she is not traveling she is reading about travel. When she is not reading or traveling, she is sharing with the readers of A Traveler's Library, or recreating her family's past at Ancestors In Aprons . She has written for Reel Life With Jane, Life is a Trip and other websites. Also co-author of a biography, Quincy Tahoma, The Life and Legacy of a Navajo Artist. Contact Vera Marie by e-mail.