Lucky Child: A Daughter of Cambodia Reunites with the Sister She Left Behind by Loung Ung
When Loung Ung came to America in 1980 as a ten-year-old Cambodian refugee, she had already survived years of hunger, violence, and loss at the hands of the Khmer Rouge, a story she told in her critically acclaimed bestseller, First They Killed My Father. Now, in Lucky Child, Ung writes of assimilation and, in alternating chapters, gives voice to a genocide survivor she left behind in rural Cambodia, her older sister Chou.
Loung was the lucky child, the sibling Eldest Brother chose to take with him to America. The youngest and the scrappiest, she was the one he believed had the best chance of making it. Just two years apart, Chou and Loung had bonded deeply over the deaths of their parents and sisters. As they stood holding hands in their dusty village while the extended family gathered to say good-bye, they never imagined that fifteen years would pass before they would be reunited again.
With candor and enormous flair, Ung describes what it is like to survive in a new culture while surmounting dogged memories of genocide and the deep scars of war. Not only must she learn about Disney characters and Christmas trees to fit in with her classmates, she must also come to understand life in a nation of peace: that the Fourth of July fireworks are not bombs and that she doesn't have to hide food in her bed every night to make sure she has enough to eat. Her spunk, intelligence, and charisma win out, but Cambodia and Chou are always in her thoughts.
An accomplished activist and writer, Ung has now returned to Cambodia many times, and in this recreation of Chou's life, she writes the story that so easily could have been hers. Both redemptive and searing, Lucky Child highlights the harsh realities of chance and circumstance and celebrates the indomitability of the human spirit.
An author, lecturer, and activist, Loung Ung has advocated for equality, human rights, and justice in her native land and worldwide for more than fifteen years. Ung lives in Cleveland, Ohio, with her husband.
Lucky Child 4.3 out of 5based on
More than 1 year ago
Lucky Child is the sequel to "First They Killed My Father". Both books are the fascinating story of the children in the Ung family who survived the killing fields in Cambodia. Lucky Child is the back and forth comparison of Loung's growing up (she was the "Lucky Child" that got to come to America) with that of her sister who stayed behind in Cambodia. Both stories are moving and not always pleasant, but they are well written. If you want to read memoirs that are emotionally capitvating, I recommend both the original book and this sequel.
More than 1 year ago
I asked for this book for Christmas not knowing anything about it other than it sounded interesting. I was not disappointed. Ung's tale of family strength, sacrifice and love was amazing. Lucky Child is one of the most well written memoirs I have ever read. I can honestly say that I thought I knew a fair bit about the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia but putting a human face and story to the atrocities made it really sink in. I have since ordered her first book and am eagerly awaiting her third. I admire her courage and how she is using her life and story to help others. This book will make you cry more than anything else you have ever read but it will also make you feel that there is hope that things can and will get better. Especially with people like Loung Ung in this world.
On a snowy winter's night in Vermont, eleven-year-old Adam Fifield and his family awaited the
arrival of his new foster brother, Soeuth, a fourteen-year-old refugee from the killing fields of Cambodia. Scrawny and terrified, Soeuth was mute for days, warily ...
The inspiring story of an immigrant's struggles to heal old wounds in the United States,
this is the sequel to When Heaven and Earth Changed Places, Le Ly Hayslip's extraordinary, award-winning memoir of life in wartime Vietnam.
In her stunning novel, Hall imagines a new dystopia set in the not-too-distant future. England
is in a state of environmental crisis and economic collapse. There has been a census, and all citizens have been herded into urban centers. Reproduction ...
Tera Lynn Childs brings a delightful mix of wit, romance, and fantasy to her books.
Fins, her YA mermaid series, is a great pick for fans of Meg Cabot’s humorous love stories. In Just for Fins, third in the series, half-human, ...
In the vein of Philippa Gregory, The King’s Daughter is a superb historical novel of
the Jacobean court that will thrill historical fiction fans everywhere. Combining fascinating fact with ingenious fiction, Christie Dickason, the acclaimed author of The Firemaster’s Mistress, ...
It's all good . . . and lucky Phoebe Avery plans to celebrate by throwing
an end-of-the-year bash with her four closest friends. Everything will be perfect—from the guest list to the fashion photographer to the engraved invitations. The only ...
A child born of sun and moon will impart a human gift to bring forth
the fall of the house of Gammen. - Hayes PropheciesSo you read the prophecy. It's all mystical, but pretty vague. Am I right? Those three, ...
Rivals The Girl on the Train as a compulsive read (and beats it for style).
-- Observer (UK)In the vein of Fiona Barton's The Widow and Renée Knight's Disclaimer, a psychological thriller about a war reporter who returns to her ...