The Boat (Paperback)
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DescriptionA dazzling, emotionally riveting debut collection: the seven stories in Nam Le's The Boat take us across the globe as he enters the hearts and minds of characters from all over the world. Whether Nam Le is conjuring the story of 14-year-old Juan, a hit man in Colombia; or an aging painter mourning the death of his much-younger lover; or a young refugee fleeing Vietnam, crammed in the ship's hold with 200 others, the result is unexpectedly moving and powerful. This is an extraordinary work of fiction that takes us to the heart of what it means to be human, and announces a writer of astonishing talent.
- Published: 19 February 2009
- Format: Paperback 288 pages
- ISBN 13: 9781847671615 ISBN 10: 1847671616
- Sales rank: 2,774
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Reviews for The Boat
Very Much Wonderful.
Don't let this colourful cover fool you, this book contains some heavy themes - but the writing is wonderful, the characters are believable and the collection of these impressive stories is a feast for any hungry mind. Nam Le writes in a way that compells and in The Boat he proves that he can write for just about anybody; you can read this book and ponder for hours over the meaning and the uses of language and the sheer brilliance of one or two of these stories, or you can just read it for the sake of reading. Deep reading or reading for plain enjoyment, the Boat is good for both. Le blends a level of fiction and a level of social realism together really well, and while not autobiographical, you can look at The Boat from the perspective of a cross-cultural writer making an impression of the many spheres of influence he is involved with. by Georgia-Lee
Remarkable short stories
A collection of short stories from a young writer who grew up in Australia, and currently works in the US. I know many people don't like short stories these days, but this collection is well worth your time. In each of the stories, Le adopts a different voice, a different tone, and creates miniature worlds and stories. And all of them are wonderful. Unlike some short story collections, in which every story is clearly the work of one person, The Boat shows a quite remarkable range for one writer. There's stories about Columbian child assassins, women in Iran, schoolchildren in Hiroshima just before the bomb. Amongst my favourites were the autobiographical-seeming â?~Love and Honour and Pity and Pride and Commitment and Sacrifice' (about a young Vietnamese writer struggling with writers' block in his creative-writing course, and his relationship with his father) and the coming-of-age-in-a-small-Australian-town story â?~Halflead Bay' (which is also the longest entry here, at around 80 pages), but the rest were just as good. My copy of â?~The Boat' comes with three pages of rave reviews, and for once these are earned. Certainly a writer to keep an eye on. by Joel Bateman