Thursday, February 16, 2012
Review: Ru by Kim Thuy
Ru is an autobiographical novel, written in vignettes. Thuy recreates flashbacks of life as a young girl running away from communist Saigon, living in a desolate Malaysian refugee camp, and finally settling in Quebec. Her parents feared for their children’s lives, and uprooted them from a comfortable lifestyle to living in extreme poverty. Their lives were shattered, turned upside down, and they were a family on the run. As an adult, settled in Quebec, her life is still filled with obstacles, raising two boys and giving special attention to one who has autism. Thuy questions her parent’s actions, and wonders if they did what was best for the family. Thuy recognizes that her past has made her the person she is today. She can handle some of the most difficult situations. Ru is about life, hardships, and memories.
I enjoyed Ru, the story is powerful and engaging but I couldn’t really connect with the story. The story is quite short, and not told in chronological order. It felt a little disjointed to me, and more about style than story. The vignettes cover a wide range of emotions, and circumstances. RU is a quick read, and definitely worth the time. The book was originally written in French and has gained a lot of attention. It wasn’t really my type of book, I really like developed novels. If you’re willing to try something different, and immigrant stories interest you, I would suggest this one.