Catfish and Mandala

Catfish and Mandala

A Two-wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam

Book - 2000?
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The story of an American odyssey--a solo bicycle voyage around the Pacific Rim to Vietnam--made by a young Vietnamese-American man in pursuit of both his adopted homeland and his forsaken fatherland. Andrew X. Pham was born in Vietnam and raised in California. His father had been a POW of the Vietcong; his family came to America as boat people. Following the suicide of his sister, Pham quit his job, sold all of his possessions, and embarked on a year-long bicycle journey that took him through the Mexican desert, around a thousand-mile loop from Narita to Kyoto in Japan; and, after five months and 2,357 miles, to Saigon, where he finds nothing familiar in the bombed-out darkness. In Vietnam, he's taken for Japanese or Korean by his countrymen, except, of course, by his relatives, who doubt that as a Vietnamese he has the stamina to complete his journey (only Westerners can do it); and in the United States he's considered anything but American. Catfish and Mandala is an unforgettable search for cultural identity.
Publisher: New York : Picador, [2000?]
ISBN: 9780312267179
Branch Call Number: 92 P491c 2000
Characteristics: 344 pages ; 21 cm


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May 22, 2016

I read this while travelling in Vietnam. Much of the 1999 description still holds true. An interesting and well written memoir.

Apr 03, 2010

Wrong cover and description.


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