The Gutter Spread Guide to Prayer rejects the narrative of healing after the death of a loved one, of getting over grief. Instead, one learns how to “hold the grief//like an attic of heirlooms” or set it down “like a parent does an infant.”
Nguyễn writes of Vietnamese history with such understanding and humanity that one can easily argue for The Mountains Sing's status as the great Vietnamese novel of our time. The irony, of course, is that this great Vietnamese novel is written in English.
diaCRITICS is a blog that showcases voices and stories from writers, artists and culture-makers of the Vietnamese and Southeast Asian diaspora on and from all shores. We publish poetry, fiction, essays, reviews, visual art, and more. Our founding editor and publisher is Viet Thanh Nguyen. diaCRITICS is a project of the Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network (DVAN).