AAAYA (Boston): October Book Club

AAAYA (Boston): October Book Club
Date: 
Sat, 10/28/2017 - 3:00pm - 4:00pm

Join us for our next book club meet-up as we read Catfish and Mandala! We will be meeting on Saturday, October 28th @ 3:00 pmRSVP HERE.

Location: V02 Vegan Cafe, 1001 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02138 (it's the cafe at the front of O2 Yoga Studio). Please contact Karmen Cheung, at karmen1cheung@gmail.com, with any questions. 

Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam
By Andrew X. Pham

Catfish and Mandala is the story of an American odyssey—a solo bicycle voyage around the Pacific Rim to Vietnam—made by a young Vietnamese-American man in pursuit of both his adopted homeland and his forsaken fatherland. 

Andrew X. Pham was born in Vietnam and raised in California. His father had been a POW of the Vietcong; his family came to America as "boat people." Following the suicide of his sister, Pham quit his job, sold all of his possessions, and embarked on a year-long bicycle journey that took him through the Mexican desert, around a thousand-mile loop from Narita to Kyoto in Japan; and, after five months and 2,357 miles, to Saigon, where he finds "nothing familiar in the bombed-out darkness." In Vietnam, he's taken for Japanese or Korean by his countrymen, except, of course, by his relatives, who doubt that as a Vietnamese he has the stamina to complete his journey ("Only Westerners can do it"); and in the United States he's considered anything but American. A vibrant, picaresque memoir written with narrative flair and an eye-opening sense of adventure, Catfish and Mandala is an unforgettable search for cultural identity. 

More About the Author
Andrew X. Pham trained and graduated from UCLA as an aerospace engineer. He worked at United Airlines as an aircraft engineer before switching career to become a writer while pursuing dual graduate degrees, M.B.A and M.S. in Aerospace Engineering, specializing in orbital debris. His brother's suicide was the catalyst in his pivotal life changing decision. 

He writes and lives on the Thai-Laos border in a traditional wooden farm bungalow he built on the Mekong River. He teaches writing and occassionally lead bicycle tours in Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia. He has launched a culinary project on Kickstarter.com, titled A Southeast Asian Love Affair: My Cookbook Diary of Travels, Flavors and Memories, a literary work that tells the stories of his life in Vietnam, Thailand, Laos, and Cambodia. He can be found at andrewxpham.com

He is the author of  Catfish and Mandala: A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam (1999)  and The Eaves of Heaven: A Life in Three Wars (2009). He is also the translator of Last Night I Dreamed of Peace (2008).

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