Book Review : In the Shadow of the Banyan by Vaddey Ratner

Vaddey Ratner’s novel In the Shadow of the Banyan is a heartbreaking tale that closely mirrors the author’s own life in Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge regime.  Raami was seven years old  in 1975 when soldiers invaded her  house in Phnom Penh and her idyllic world came crashing down.  The daughter of the “Tiger Prince”, her family is royalty and  consider a huge threat to the Communist theology of  this faction.   Along with many other citizens, Raami, her younger sister, her parents and extended family  are led out of the city and dragged into the countryside to create the misguided egalitarian society the Khmer Rouge think will help their country but instead force  Cambodia into famine.  While Ratner describes the horrors of  the “killing fields” the author’s lyrical writing style written from the innocence  of a child is what shines through and makes In the Shadow of the Banyan such a memorable book.

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This entry was posted in Asian Fiction, books, historical, literary fiction and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Book Review : In the Shadow of the Banyan by Vaddey Ratner

  1. This is a great book. It was my Cambodian choice for A Year of Reading the World (http://ayearofreadingtheworld.com/). Glad you liked it too.

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