On a book page, this tab will allow you to add a book to one of your lists.
Please login or register to use this feature.
9780987964182_cover Enlarge Cover View Excerpt
4 of 5
10 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $12.95
edition:Paperback
category: Fiction
published: Nov 2012
ISBN:9780987964182

Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls

by Con Cú

reviews: 9
tagged:
add a tag
Please login or register to use this feature.
literary
4 of 5
10 ratings
rated!
rated!
list price: $12.95
edition:Paperback
category: Fiction
published: Nov 2012
ISBN:9780987964182
Description

On her last day, Dr. Han Thieu, a Vietnamese doctor in Montreal, reminisces about her life, her husband, daughters, adopted son Quan, and friend Mathieu Hibou. In an act of love, she has decided to spare them her descent into unbearable pain and eventual death. Each of her remaining moments is like the rustling of papaya leaves—a sound only audible to those who choose to listen. Each memory brings sorrow and joy. For in life, love is but the counterface of suffering. Then with her last gasp, the story begins. The dark pain of post-war Vietnam and Cambodia blends into the youthful resilience of Malaysia and Thailand, the discovery of Canada and then new tragedies in Africa and the Middle East. Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls is a story teller’s tale. With every page you turn, let the ink lament a land lost, the paper sigh for past love and the letters paint desire for life renewed.

Contributor Notes

Con Cú is a Canadian author, born in Vancouver, who now lives in Aylmer, Quebec, outside of Ottawa. A veteran traveller, he attempts to marry his rich experience living abroad with the excitement of Canada's new and open society. Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls is his first novel. Con Cú is also the founder of Deux Voiliers Publishing, a thriving micropress dedicated to bringing down the barriers to publishing and bringing the best of new Canadian novelists to readers everywhere.

Editorial Review

Critical acclaim from other authors

The writer’s understated style gently weaves this tapestry of life, trauma, love and bloodshed; and as the lives, experiences and relationships deepen - the writer’s passion for life and love comes into full bloom and culminate in a poignant epilogue. P.T. Straub, The Ordinary Adept.

Such a moving story, well-written too. I was impressed with how you switched back and forth between the characters without getting their stories lost. Well done! Sonia Saikaley, The Lebanese Dishwasher, Quattro Press

The story is brilliantly told. I read the last three quarters of the book all in one sitting and was caught up in the narrative and the characters. Chris Turner, Author of Denibus Ar, Innersky Press

And from our readersA portrait of the current human condition emerges. As his many characters develop, we share their sorrows, joys and loves in a true kaleidoscope of events. Michael Scott-Harston, Ottawa

The novel really is a wonderful, touching tale of how the human spirit overcomes adversity. The author Con Cú has mastered the art of simplicity and economy of words, without foregoing the occasional stroke of poetic genius. BPOTS, Cultus Lake

Buy the e-book:

Reader Reviews

Sign Up or Sign In to add your review or comment.

Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls

Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls by author Con Cu tells the tale of the Thieus, a Vietnamese family who fled the post war chaos of their country for a fresh start in Canada. The author also gives us an unsettling reminder of the physical and mental devastation that war leaves on civilian populations. Think of other conflicts in more recent years—Central Africa, Syria, Iraq, Afghanistan, Bosnia, Egypt, Venezuela and the Ukraine—where millions of people died or fled the same kind of violence and bloodshed that dogs the Thieus as they flee Vietnam and then touches the life of Mathieu, one of their Canadian benefactors.
Even without physical wounds, the Thieus and their daughters live with the pain and anguish of their experiences as they try to remain connected with Quann who helped them escape and then becomes hunted by a gang of drug pushers.
Anyone who can remember the stories about the Vietnamese boat people and the work by volunteers to resettle them in communities across Canada will find their personal memories of those times rekindled by Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls from Deux Voiliers Publishing. While there are many happy endings from those days and in the lives of others who found safety, we should not forget what happened to them and all the others who died trying to escape. Those stories go on today as the regular reports about crowded boatloads of migrants perishing or being rescued at sea remind us.

Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls

Review: Soldier, Lily Peace and Pearls
By Con Cú

Con Cú’s book about how oppression and war in Vietnam transform the lives of three innocents is not only a compelling read, it is a powerful manifesto to the strength of the human spirit faced with adversity. The novel opens simply, with the treasured contents of a small wooden box, setting the stage for the story which unfolds. I mention this in particular because what I particularly liked about Con Cú’s book is that he never needs to push the language or over-dramatize, and this makes some of the most harrowing parts of the book, including a vivid scene of life and death in a crowded boat, all the more effective. His straightforward yet highly descriptive prose takes us to places we might not expect, and allows us to see clearly what the characters see, and even to experience along with them fear, sensuality, trust, shame, and finally redemption. I highly recommend Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls, and I am anxious to read his next work.

Great story

This first novel is a web of relationships, following the links of romance, passion, and hardship between two families from Cambodia and Vietnam, and then with key players in Vancouver, Montreal, and even Germany. It opens with the death of Han Thieu, an end for her but a beginning for the reader as there are enough teasers given that we want to unravel the threads connecting to her. The web of relationships is spread out over a backdrop of war, of atrocities and injustices. We move from the Khmer Rouge conflicts in Southeast Asia to Malaysian pirates to Rwanda to the Gaza strip to Triads in BC. We meet the soldier, the pearl, and the lily, and follow their search for peace with each other and their past. Their tale is well told, interwoven with rich imagery and carefully laid out detail - physical, historical, and cultural.

Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearl

A touching story of love, war and redemption. The novel is fast spaced , exciting and a true page turner. With engaging and memorable characters, you'll find this book impossible to put down.

Related Blog Posts

Reading Lists Featuring “Soldier, Lily, Peace and Pearls”

Listed on the Read Local map

User Activity

X
Contacting facebook
Please wait...