Jimshoes in Vietnam: Orienting a Westerner

James R. Klassen, Author Herald Press $20.2 (390p) ISBN 978-0-8361-3412-4
The memoir of a Mennonite missionary in Vietnam before and after the fall of Saigon, this book might have been a valuable addition to the literature of the American experience in Vietnam. Instead, Klassen offers a reworking of his extensive journals which, though well-meaning, are mired in mundanity. Description and style are almost nil. And the dozens of people who wander in and out of the book are virtually indistinguishable because the author's reconstructed conversations all sound the same. One keeps hoping for more, but it never comes. In a typical reflection, Klassen writes, ""Even though I was wearing Vietnamese sandals, I still was a foreigner and never would understand all the intricacies of the language and culture.'' Photos not seen by PW. (July
Reviewed on: 01/01/1986
Release date: 01/01/1986
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