Reader reviews and comments on The Beauty of Humanity Movement, plus links to write your own review.

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The Beauty of Humanity Movement

A Novel

By Camilla Gibb

The Beauty of Humanity Movement
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  • Hardcover: Mar 2011,
    320 pages.
    Paperback: Feb 2012,
    320 pages.

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There are currently 23 reader reviews for The Beauty of Humanity Movement
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Wendy F. (Kalamazoo, MI) (12/13/10)

Beauty of Humanity Movement
An interesting look at post-war Vietnam and the perils of living in a Communist country. It is difficult to imagine not being able to express yourself artistically due to the laws of the land however that is what many experienced in Vietnam during war time and beyond. This is an intimate portrait of those who survived the war and their descendants and what they must endure as artists. Character development was a little weak and I had a hard time distinguishing between them in the beginning. Old Man Hung is able to show his own creativity through his meticulously made pho where others have had to express themselves by going underground. His passion for other's work is shown through his memories. I enjoyed this book and would recommend it, especially to those who are blessed to live in our country and can freely communicate through their art without fear of reprisals.
Theresa R. (Sierra Madre, CA) (12/13/10)

Decent Book
I thought this book was ok. Although I really liked the author's writing style and the way she brought her characters to life, I found the book a little slow in the beginning and found it hard to get into. Even though I I thought the story as a whole was just okay, I found myself caring for each and every one of the characters, which can only be credited to the author's ability to make them so real.

I think that I would definitely recommend this as a book club choice because there are A LOT of different topics this book touches on that would make for great discussions.
Mary B. (St Paul, MN) (12/09/10)

The Beauty of Humanity Movement
This was a very moving book. The story touches on the effects of war, political upheaval, repression and poverty, which might be difficult for some to read. It also touches on love and survival. It was both haunting and hopeful. I would highly recommend the book.
Linda G. (Walnut Creek, CA) (12/07/10)

From Ethiopia, to Vietnam; Gibb Writes of Different Cultures
Having been a huge fan of Camilla Gibb's previous book, "Sweetness In the Belly", I expected to immediately be swept up with her new one. I was slightly disappointed that it wasn't to happen right away in this book, but very much rewarded as she slowly wove her magic, unveiling an exquisite story of contemporary Vietnam, particularly her tying in of its art and literature. The main character, Old Man Hung, is a private, yet charming man who creates his own magic with his secret recipe for pho, an aromatic beef noodle soup that makes him sought after in the nearby towns. Among some of his frequent customers are a woman who is Vietnamese from the US in search of her artist father, and a young man named Tu, who is an enterprising tour guide that she enlists to show her around.
These characters, as well as others in the story, are very likable, and the author does a wonderful job in her descriptions of the foods, smells, the poverty, as well as the beauty of the land and the art. A lovely and gripping novel.
Trezeline B. (Columbia, MD) (12/06/10)

The Beauty of Humanity Movement
Camilla Gibb has created a love story, a history, and a biography which takes place in Viet Nam. This book contains so much of an education, yet it is delivered in a beautiful and interesting manor. I enjoyed this book and have been inspired to find out more of the history of Viet Nam both yesterday and today.
Susan B. (Rutledge, MO) (12/01/10)

Vivid, compelling, recommended
I found this a compelling, very well-written book that touches on many issues and ideas: Vietnam and Vietnamese history, culture and society; family; art and politics; how cultures and traditions shift in the face of history; “outsider” perspectives on America and Americans; food and cooking; and love and relationships. I've been to Hanoi, where the book takes place, once, for only a single week, but found her descriptions so accurate that I assumed her cultural and historical perceptions must be as well. Highly recommended.
Doris K. (Angora, MN) (11/29/10)

The Beauty of Humanity Movement
I enjoyed reading this book. The Vietnamese characters were skillfully brought to life by the author. A good job was done showing contemporary Vietnamese life while reviewing much of the history of this country. In America we don't know the story of the North Vietnamese people. This book brings out the problems and delights of their culture. By seeing North Vietnam through the eyes of a woman who is Vietnamese by birth but spent much of her life in America we can relate to many of her impressions.
This book would be good for discussions in a book club.
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Beyond the Book:
  Pho : A Vietnamese Delicacy

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