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Things We Lost to the Water by Eric Nguyen

Things We Lost to the Water

Best Seller
Things We Lost to the Water by Eric Nguyen
Hardcover $26.95
May 04, 2021 | ISBN 9780593317952

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  • May 04, 2021 | ISBN 9780593317952

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  • May 04, 2021 | ISBN 9780593317969

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Praise

An Atlanta Journal-ConstitutionThe Millions, We Are Bookish, and Nerd Daily Most Anticipated Book of the Year

“This is an elemental book, of water, for sure, but also of other elements of life, including love and loss. Vietnamese people know all about these elements, coming from a country whose entire length is bordered by a sea, and from a history saturated with loss. Love is one element that has enabled their survival, but sometimes at a cost. Eric Nguyen’s powerful novel ripples and gleams with the unpredictable flow and surge of love, which, like water, can drown us or sustain us. From a war to a hurricane, from an ocean to a flood, Things We Lost to the Water proves itself to be a novel that sustains us.” 
—Viet Thanh Nguyen, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sympathizer

“Exquisitely well-written, Things We Lost to the Water is a tender, haunting story of loss, love, family and survival. A moving and powerful debut.”
—Charles Yu, National Book Award-winning author of Interior Chinatown

“Nguyen’s Things We Lost to the Water is a novel full of tenderness and courage. The family at its center hums with love and strength, and their journey to and within New Orleans brings a fresh perspective to that most iconic city. Nguyen will broaden the reader’s understanding of migration, perseverance, and what it means to be American. This is exactly the sort of novel we need right now.”
—Kawai Strong Washburn, author of Sharks in the Time of Saviors
 
What a book! Eric Nguyen has written one of the best debut novels in years. In precise, exquisite sentences, Nguyen details the emotional lives of three family members over decades of struggle, survival, joy. Things We Lost to the Water is a masterpiece, an arrival, an expression of love, from a beautiful and necessary new voice. 
—Matthew Salesses, author of The Hundred-Year Flood

“A devastatingly beautiful debut novel of secrets, deceits, and survivals. An extraordinary tale of a mother and her two sons, torn apart by the storms of Vietnam, to be tested again by the hurricanes of New Orleans. The end has me weeping from joy, sorrow and hope. Eric Nguyen’s talent radiates via his urgent prose and his ability to sketch the fine line between loyalty and betrayal, between what brings us together and what breaks us apart. Things We Lost to the Water is a powerful, stunning, and necessary read!”
— Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai, author of The Mountains Sing 

In Things We Lost to the Water, Eric Nguyen not only uses water to great effect but the prose itself feels like water: clear, powerful, and life-giving. While reading we believe that being loved and being flawed are not incompatible, nor belonging and being estranged. Nguyen helps us understand that we can all float if we let go of having to swim the same way to the same rhythm—we will find our own level in our own time. This is a beautiful book!
—Nicola Griffith, author of Hild

“Debut author Nguyen movingly portrays the way adopted homes can become as cherished and familiar as ancestral ones . . . but also the truth that new loves can never quite heal old wounds . . . An engrossing, prismatic portrait of first- and second-generation Vietnamese American life.”
Kirkus Reviews

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