Friday, 10 November 2017

Inside Out and Back Again by Thanha Lai

Rarely do you come across a book so touching in everyway that you want to carry it close to you even after you are done reading it. With Inside Out and Back Again by Thanha Lai I had a similar encounter.

What grabbed my attention the most about this book ought to be listed in bullet points

• The gorgeous hardback at affordable price on Amazon. Naked, the book is lavender under the covers and the hue is so rich!

• It is a novel in verse format! How often do you come across such an innovative idea? For me it was the first time reading such a beautiful novel written in an elegant manner!

• The several critical acclaim won by the book and the labels which proudly announce the book as the winner of National Book Award and a Newberry Honor Book.

Now, coming to the plot of the book, it is a close up view on the life of the common people during the Vietnam war, through the eyes of Hà, a ten year old girl. The story opens with a bubbly relatable young child, teased by her brothers, fond of her Papaya trees and too young to understand the war and it's consequences. It ends a year later, the young girl now more wise.

I have loved almost everything about this book apart from the fact that somewhere I felt that the verse could have been stronger in nature. The character sketch of Hà is way more strong and somehow leaves the other characters behind. Lai seasons her novel with a sense of humor so subtle yet charming, and quite a few instances of gender discrimination that I related to like none else.

Some memorable quotes

" I truly learn
to fly kick
not to kick anyone
so much as
to fly"

" Would be simpler
if English
and life
were logical."

I rate the book 4*/5*.

And I surely think you should buy the copy on Amazon !

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