Vietnamerica is what happens when I realized to better understand myself, I needed to first better understand my parents. It’s the year journey of my family’s. In Vietnamerica, GB Tran unveils his own association with a family history of which he was almost entirely ignorant. His work seems to owe a substantial debt to. 21 Feb Where does memory end and myth begin? GB Tran’s graphic novel Vietnamerica : A Family’s Journey occupies the messy middle ground of that.

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With Vietnamerica Tran continues to work to his strengths and the book has so many wonderful pages that any number are noteworthy representations of what a great creator can do with a page.

It’s really a wonder that any of us are alive to tell our tales at all. The man should be writing storyboards for movies, then turning them into animated films. It’s a kaleidoscopic approach, and like Spiegelman or Satrapi, Tran frames himself as a guide. And yet his mother not only has reason to have been disenchanted and reason to be upset with her husband, but Tran shows that she is not just the caricature he concocted of her in his early twenties; after all it is through her own careful, passionate, and invested narration that much of Vietnamerica ‘s story unfolds.

It is a journey indeed, where the only antagonist is time, and the final destination is memory. I read about fifty pages or so and found myself so mixed up that I went back and started the book all over from the beginning.

Be sure to refer to the illustrated family tree that Tran provides – it’s a lifesaver when you’re feeling a bit lost. Tran, in a decisive act of assimilation, decides to forgo his Vietnamese name, Gia-Bac, for the more pronounceable G. Leave a Reply Cancel reply Your email address will not be published. While reading this book, the living conditions these people experience reminds me about Cuba where my family comes from and while not to the horrible extent this book showcases nonetheless the suffering is universal.


Chapter 10 Preview Chapter.

Vietnamerica: A Family’s Journey by G.B. Tran

While he touches upon the problems of cultural assimilation experienced by his siblings and parents, the bulk of the book takes place in Vietnam, from Like David Mazzucchelli’s Asterios PolypVietnamerica vietnaerica a lot from the reader, but to me that exemplifies what comics at their best can achieve Chapter 3 Preview Chapter. Vietnamerica will give you a new perspective on the Vietnam War, being American, and what family really means.

The overall structure of the Vietnamerica is collection of mini-memories contained in a larger one, G. Dad and my aunt, his twin, were both beaten black and blue and left for dead on the side of a highway in Wyoming by my biological Grandmother and her then boyfriend.

Thanks for telling us about the problem. You can practically hear her tearing the vegetables and smell the spices she tosses into her pan.

Week 7 Read Comic Strip. This, coupled with the tendency of his anecdotes to bleed together, leaves us with a book that feels uncomfortably open-ended, neither specific enough for memory nor expansive enough for myth.


To give the impression of listening to a family history, Tran begins most of the chapters with the same conceit: Yet, in some ways, this fact works against the narrative because Tran does not always provide a solid timeline for the events detailed in his book.

Vietnamerica is an utterly remarkable vietnamerixa of American literature. Where I did not connect with Tran was with his resistance to wanting to go to Vietnam to connect with relatives he had never met.

It was only in his late twenties that GB began to learn their extraordinary story. Atmospheric and evocative, sometimes kaleidoscopic to the point of psychedelia in its construction and formal invention.


VIETNAMERICA | Vietnamerica is a documentary about the largest refugee group in the nation.

Although I have not personally attempted this read as of yet, through these reviews I can think about the weaknesses in comic memoirs. Sep 02, Matthew rated it it was amazing Shelves: But my decades of disinterest inadvertently provided them a glimmer of hope – that someday I’d want to learn.

Tran decides to return to Vietnam in April with his parents after much prodding on the part of the his mother and a decisive edict from his stereotypically stern and distant father, and this comic documents the experiences of his parents, grandparents, and uncle dur As the only member of his family born in the United States, Tran grew up largely indifferent to the experience of his immigrant family in Vietnam and how they came to the United States following the fall of Saigon in April There is much I don’t know about that war, and we had a different experience coming to the US, but as a fellow immigrant I very much related to this family’s perspective.

The book depicted the struggles the Tran family faced from the perspective of many different characters – each with his own viewpoint.

Vietnamerica: A Family’s Journey

Jun 14, Stacey Nguyen rated it really liked it. Even Tran himself does grow up—the publication of this beautiful book being primary evidence to his maturation. GB Tran accomplishes these with Vietnamerica —the first by simply presenting an interesting story vietbamerica interesting terms and the second by crafting something of a critique of the common Western gaze that is neither pedantic nor patronizing but, almost as if by accident, simply is.