Picture of author.

Kim Thúy

Autor(a) de Ru

14 Works 1,412 Membros 91 Críticas 1 Favorited

About the Author

Image credit: Kim Thúy en octobre 2020

Obras por Kim Thúy

Ru (2009) 875 exemplares
Mãn (2013) 225 exemplares
Vi (2001) 142 exemplares
Em (2020) 124 exemplares
À toi (2011) — Autor — 13 exemplares
Hitomi (2017) 5 exemplares
La goutte (2014) 2 exemplares
Le poisson et l'oiseau (2019) 1 exemplar
Man 1 exemplar


Conhecimento Comum

Nome canónico
Thúy, Kim
Nome legal
Nguyễn An Tịnh Kim Thuy
Data de nascimento
País (no mapa)
Local de nascimento
Saigon, Vietnam
Locais de residência
Montreal, Quebec, Canada
Université de Montréal
Prémios e menções honrosas
Chevalier de l'Ordre national du Québec (2015)



Canadian Author Challenge — January: Robertson Davies & Kim Thúy em 75 Books Challenge for 2016 (Fevereiro 2016)


I love Kim Thúy's writing, and this novella is no exception. Whenever I pick up one of her books, I know I am going to be treated to beautiful, evocative writing; a semi-autobiographical plot; a delicate, nuanced view of immigration; a visceral longing for her Vietnamese homeland; and a love for her adopted country (Canada).

Mãn (which means "fulfilled") grew up in Vietnam with her adoptive mother, Maman, who would often leave Mãn with friends or neighbors when she had an assignment as a revolutionary. There Mãn learned to be invisible, to serve the families with deft hands, anticipating their wants so they would have no cause to turn on her. This prepared her for the life of a foreign bride to a Vietnamese man in Montreal. Maman wanted her to be assured of a safe life, and Mãn continued to take up as little oxygen as possible.

Once in Montreal, however, Mãn is befriended by Julie, a smiling, open-hearted woman who dissolves the boundaries that Mãn has set up around herself. Soon Mãn is running an increasingly famous restaurant built around remembered and reimagined Vietnamese recipes. In Paris Mãn meets someone who will dissolve the boundaries around her heart as well.

Kim Thúy is a restaurateur and chef, and her passion for food is evident in this novel. If you love food, you will enjoy her descriptions of the tastes and textures of various foods used in Vietnamese cooking. But it's also a novel about a life between worlds and the struggle to find personal fulfillment in such a tenuous space. As in [Em] and [Ru], each chapter is only a page or two long and the book is short, but the language is rich and savory and the images linger.
… (mais)
1 vote
labfs39 | 19 outras críticas | Feb 11, 2024 |
September 19, 2023 Update Added a review for the 2023 film adaptation of Ru under Trivia and Links below. Also a NOTE: The pronunciation of Thúy sounds like "Thwee" (soft on the t sound). It means "water" in Vietnamese. Don't pronounce it "Too-ee" (hard t sound), which means "stinky/rotten" in Vietnamese. 😂

Re-read for TIFF 2023
Review of the Random House Kindle eBook (2012) translated by Sheila Fischman from the French language original "Ru" (2009).

I had completely forgotten that gesture, which I’d performed a thousand times when I was small. I’d forgotten that love comes from the head and not the heart. Of the entire body, only the head matters. Merely touching the head of a Vietnamese person insults not just him but his entire family tree.
When I meet young girls in Montreal or elsewhere who injure their bodies intentionally, deliberately, who want permanent scars to be drawn on their skin, I can’t help secretly wishing they could meet other young girls whose permanent scars are so deep they’re invisible to the naked eye.

I first read Ru, which means "Lullaby" in Vietnamese, several years ago in my pre-reviewing days at Goodreads. It was 5 stars for me at the time, and it still felt like 5-stars on this re-read, which I did in advance of seeing the film adaptation next week at the upcoming Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF).

It does seem from the film trailer that the movie will concentrate on the family's arrival in Quebec, Canada after escaping as boat people from Communist Vietnam in the 1970s. The novel is far more sweeping and is disorienting as it is told in non-chronological vignettes that range from the lead character Tinh's childhood in Vietnam, thru the Communist victory in the war, the family's escape and eventual emigration to Canada and then further into the future when Tinh herself is grown with a family of 2 children and makes periodic visits back to Vietnam in the present day.

See poster at https://images.ctfassets.net/22n7d68fswlw/2Fztx8Y6qP5a5ajn8RW0OV/13be25fe8d589c5...
Promotional poster for the 2023 film adaptation of "Ru". Image sourced from TIFF.

I found Ru to be just as engaging on second reading with its beautiful evocations of childhood memories, the trauma of war and refugee escape and the 'fish out of water' settlement into a new country and culture while still hanging on to your roots.

Trivia and Links
Ru has been adapted as a Canadian French/Vietnamese language film with director Charles-Olivier Michaud and the author Kim Thúy as producer. The film will World Premiere at the 2023 Toronto International Film Festival in September 2023 and will have a general Canadian release on November 24, 2023. Read the TIFF background to the film here and watch an English language subtitled trailer here.

I gave the 2023 film adaptation a 5-star rating in my review on Facebook. Photographs of author & film producer Kim Thúy, film director Charles-Olivier Michaud and the main cast can be seen at Journal de Montreal (Note: French language article, turn on web translator). The film will have a November 24, 2023 general release in Canada. Foreign and/or streaming distribution is unknown to me at the present time.
… (mais)
alanteder | 55 outras críticas | Sep 23, 2023 |
Kim Thúy's beautiful short story, Vi, is a must read for fiction lovers!

I won't lie, the fact that this book is so short was what drew me to it. I needed a quick read to keep me occupied while I was in a waiting room and this book was short enough to devour in one sitting. While this book might lack in quantity, it hits a real punch on the quality. I'm honestly surprised Kim is not a bigger author, because this book was mind-blowingly awesome. And yes, I am making mind-blowingly a word.

The cultural impact is probably the best part of this novel. Often, you can see silly cultural stereotypes in novels but this one did it right. You could tell Kim knew what she was talking about with the depth and nature of her words. It didn't feel cheap or obnoxious, it felt oddly satisfying to read about another culture that was not my own. Watching Vi's story take place over these pages was a fantastic adventure, since Kim wove her words so beautifully and made this story dance in my mind. I absolutely loved it!

I would have liked a better ending, I found it kind of "blah" compared to the rest of the novel. This book had me hooked and obsessed with Vi's journey and then the end just fell...well, flat. I would have liked something more. That was my only real issue with this novel. It is a translation (and my copy was an ARC) so there were some weird sentences with the translation but that wasn't a con for me. I moved passed those issues really easily when reading it.

Overall, this charming read is a great option if you want a story that will move you and impact your understanding of culture. I 100% recommend this book!

Four out of five stars.

I received an ARC of this book through Goodreads First Reads.
… (mais)
Briars_Reviews | 8 outras críticas | Aug 4, 2023 |
Thúy's brevity adds grace and poetry to an already touching story of an immigrant to Canada from Vietnam. Mãn's attention to tradition through food allows the reader to share the distress of severance from her Maman and her homeland. A beautiful, memorable story.
VivienneR | 19 outras críticas | Jun 21, 2023 |



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