"Ru," by Kim Thuy
Ru. In Vietnamese it means lullaby; in French it is a small stream, but also signifies a flow--of tears, blood, money. Kim Thúy's Ru is literature at its most crystalline: the flow of a life on the tides of unrest and on to more peaceful waters. In vignettes of exquisite clarity, sharp observation and sly wit, we are carried along on an unforgettable journey from a palatial residence in Saigon to a crowded and muddy Malaysian refugee camp, and onward to a new life in Quebec. There, the young girl feels the embrace of a new community, and revels in the chance to be part of the American Dream. As an adult, the waters become rough again: now a mother of two sons, she must learn to shape her love around the younger boy's autism. Moving seamlessly from past to present, from history to memory and back again, Ru is a book that celebrates life in all its wonder: its moments of beauty and sensuality, brutality and sorrow, comfort and comedy.
This is our book club choice for the month of November. It has won many awards in Canada, so I began reading it with high hopes. Although very insightful in how she tells small segments of her life in great detail the whole way it was written in short sections, some a page or two long, others just a few lines, didn't sit well with me.
It felt very "jumpy" the book as though she was just picking out memories randomly and writing them down. I think if it was done in a chronological order it would have been better. Also some memories felt not completed as though she left out things.
Stars out of 5 : 2 In it's favour it is a short read. Do I think it's a great book; no. There was no order to the book for me and because of that I lost interest in it. Very few people didn't like it in the reviews; I guess I am an exception to the rule.
If you have read it what did you think?
By the way I do give it a 10 out of 10 though for the art work on the front cover, I thought that was lovely.