BookBrowse Reviews The Eaves of Heaven by Andrew X. Pham

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The Eaves of Heaven

A Life in Three Wars

by Andrew X. Pham

The Eaves of Heaven by Andrew X. Pham
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  • First Published:
    Jun 2008, 320 pages
    Paperback:
    Jun 2009, 320 pages

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Book Reviewed by:
Kim Kovacs

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A son's searing memoir of his Vietnamese father's experiences over the course of three wars

The Eaves of Heaven is difficult to categorize. It's not quite a biography, autobiography, nor memoir. "I did not set out to write my father's biography…" the author states in his notes at the front of the book. "I have lent his life stories my words. The perspectives and sentiments within are his." Although it doesn't fit the standard mould, however, the book's format "works;" it's both effective and affecting. The end result is an absorbing, real-life account of Thong Van Pham's life in Vietnam during a particularly turbulent era.

Thong Van Pham's story is told in two parallel time lines, one relating his childhood in North Vietnam (1940 – 1954), the other his adulthood in the South (1956 – 1976). The author's approach can cause the reader a certain amount of confusion...

About The Author
Andrew X Pham (pronounced fam) was born in Saigon, Vietnam in 1967. His father, Thong Van Pham, worked for the US during the Vietnam War and was imprisoned in a reeducation camp after the war by the Communists. The family arrived in California in 1977 as 'boat people'. 

As a child, Andrew thought he would become a painter but eventually followed his father (a software engineer) into the same field, graduating from UCLA with a degree in aerospace engineering in 1990.  After briefly working as an aircraft engineer, he realized he was unfit for cubicle work so quit his job to pursue an M.B.A. and an M.S. in Engineering.  Eventually, he abandoned his studies, and, saddled with debts, tried his hand at writing for a living - working as a technical writer ...

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