The Happiest Refugee

The Happiest Refugee : My Journey from Tragedy to Comedy

4.21 (11,142 ratings by Goodreads)
  • Paperback
By (author) 

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Anh Do nearly didn't make it to Australia. His entire family came close to losing their lives on the sea as they escaped from war-torn Vietnam in an overcrowded boat. But nothing - not murderous pirates, nor the imminent threat of death by hunger, disease or dehydration as they drifted for days - could quench their desire to make a better life in a country where freedom existed.

Life in Australia was hard, an endless succession of back-breaking work, crowded rooms, ruthless landlords and make-do everything. But there was a loving extended family, and always friends and play and something to laugh about for Anh, his brother Khoa and their sister Tram. Things got harder when their father left home when Anh was thirteen - they felt his loss very deeply and their mother struggled to support the family on her own. His mother's sacrifice was an inspiration to Anh and he worked hard during his teenage years to help her make ends meet, also managing to graduate high school and then university.

Another inspiration was the comedian Anh met when he was about to sign on for a 60-hour a week corporate job. Anh asked how many hours he worked. 'Four,' the answer came back, and that was it. He was going to be a comedian!

The Happiest Refugee tells the incredible, uplifting and inspiring life story of one of our favourite personalities. Tragedy, humour, heartache and unswerving determination - a big life with big dreams. Anh's story will move and amuse all who read it.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 240 pages
  • 153 x 234mm | 340g
  • Sydney, Australia
  • 1742372384
  • 9781742372389
  • 11,505

About Anh Do

Anh Do is one of Australia's leading comedians. He has also acted in television series and films, written screenplays and is a sought-after keynote speaker.
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Rating details

11,142 ratings
4.21 out of 5 stars
5 44% (4,903)
4 37% (4,173)
3 15% (1,680)
2 3% (286)
1 1% (100)

Our customer reviews

I got this book after reading reviews that it was good. It is so much more than that, it is a must read. Anh leads us through the stories of his family's migration from his childhood in Vietnam, the treacherous journey over the sea, to his new home of Australia and the struggles of a new country. His story involves tales of heroism and bravery in the face of the known and unknown risks of such a perilous journey and a family's struggle to make a better life for themselves. I was moved to tears more than once and burst out laughing several times. (I don't recommend reading this whilst riding public transport, it could cause some very odd looks) I was a fan of Anh before this book and now even more so!show more
by Stacey Harper
I've read this book three times and yet I still laugh and cry as hard as the first time I read it. Buy it!!!!show more
by Cherie Valentine
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