NOTE: The Kindle Book Review received a free copy of this book for an independent, fair, and honest review. We are not associated with the author or Amazon.
The sheer scale of the brutality of the Cambodian genocide makes one gape, useless. It is blank, incomprehensible, a sheer mountain of skulls. This novel approaches it through a young girl’s life, one full at first of universal family traumas, dark personal secrets, money troubles. The heroine Dara’s life is far from an idyll, but the sudden rise of the Khmer Rouge is a wave of madness, sweeping aside every hope of stability she had.
A compelling story and a powerful, observant protagonist make this a difficult book to set aside. The absurd, murderous “agrarian society” of the Khmer Rouge is even harder for the mind to set aside, after reading. Although the prose is often pedestrian and the pace drags near the end, Dara’s story has genuine resonance, and the book is well worth a read.