“Like a strip of curtain between the dead and the living, Fire Summer is at once ephemeral and expansive. A haunting debut from a writer whose characters, lovingly described, pass not only through rivers and airports, but also despair and separation. We are ferried with them to the other side – one where the fractured are […]


Sept. 15, 2019. Shakespeare & Co., New York, NY, “Words in Honor of Paul Lyons.” Sept. 16, 2019. Trident Booksellers, Boston, MA, with Alan Lightman. Sept. 17, 2019. KGB Bar, New York, NY. Sept. 19, 2019. Hamilton College, Clinton, NY. Oct. 11, 2019. University of Hawai’i at Mānoa, Kuykendall Hall 410. Dec. 15, 2019. da […]

About Me

I was born in central Vietnam, grew up in the northeastern US, and now live in Honolulu. I hold a BA in creative writing from Hamilton College and a PhD in English from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. I am a recipient of the George A. Watrous Literary Prize for Fiction, the Myrle Clark […]

Where the stream emptied into a lake

she saw a footbridge swaying in the breeze. Go across the bridge to the marketplace. She looked around. She heard the buzzing of a market and smelled roasted meat. She crossed the footbridge. The open marketplace spread along the lakeside. “Mua đi! Mua đi!” a blind peddler cried, clutching her basket of pink mountain apples. “Come buy! Come buy! Fresh […]

The Wife Rock

The story of Hòn Vọng Phu, a wife who turns into stone waiting for her husband’s return, shapes and is shaped by the physical terrains of Vietnam and its people’s artistic expressions. In all four provinces, from central highland Vietnam to its northern border with China, stands a wife rock atop a mountain cradling a […]

A Trickster

A folk hero of Vietnam, Trạng Quỳnh has bequeathed laughter to generations of Vietnamese. This folk character is based on a historical figure, Nguyễn Quỳnh who lived during the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. Trạng Quỳnh exploits the polyglossic and heteroglossic conditions of Vietnam, a boundary-crosser who disrupts and transforms the established Truth of […]