Dilan Gunawardana reviews 'Such a Lovely Little War: Saigon 1961-63' by Marcelino Truong, translated by David Homel

Dilan Gunawardana reviews 'Such a Lovely Little War: Saigon 1961-63' by Marcelino Truong, translated by David Homel

Such a Lovely Little War: Saigon 1961-63

by Marcelino Truong, translated by David Homel

NewSouth $37.99 pb, 274 pp, 9781551526479

For those seeking a concise illustrative history of the Vietnam War, Marcelino Truong’s graphic novel, Such a Lovely Little War, is the ideal place to begin. Those seeking a graphic novel memoir as engaging as Art Spiegelman’s Maus (1986–92) or Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis (2001–2), will be unsatisfied.

‘Marco’, as the author is referred to in this book, is the son of a Vietnamese diplomat, Khánh, and his French wife, Yvette. His family, including his two older siblings, were yanked from the ‘cherry pie’ idyll of America in the early 1960s when Khánh was recalled to Saigon as the war between the North and South began to escalate. In addition to the historical events and atrocities that unfold around them, the Truongs must endure Yvette’s undiagnosed bipolar disorder, triggered by a mixture of anxiety for the safety of her family and a longing to return to ‘civilisation’.

Read the rest of this article by subscribing to ABR Online for as little as $10 a month.

We offer a range of subscription options, including print, which can be found by clicking here. If you are already a subscriber, enter your username and password in the ‘Log In’ section in the top right-hand corner of the screen.

If you require assistance, contact us or consult the Frequently Asked Questions page.

Dilan Gunawardana

Dilan Gunawardana

Dilan Gunawardana is an arts journalist and graphic designer. He is a former Deputy Editor of Australian Book Review (2017-18). He holds a Masters Degree in Communications and Media Studies at Monash University, and was the recipient of the Dean's Award for Academic Excellence. He has previously worked in media and communications roles for various organisations.

Social Profiles

Leave a comment

Please note that all comments must be approved by ABR and comply with our Terms & Conditions.

NB: If you are an ABR Online subscriber or contributor, you will need to login to ABR Online in order to post a comment. If you have forgotten your login details, or if you receive an error message when trying to submit your comment, please email your comment (and the name of the article to which it relates) to comments@australianbookreview.com.au. We will review your comment and, subject to approval, we will post it under your name.