To Destroy You Is No Loss: The Odyssey of a Cambodian Family

Joan Criddle, With, Teeda Butt, Author, Joyce Johnson, Editor Atlantic Monthly Press $17.95 (289p) ISBN 978-0-87113-116-4
With the Khmer Rouge takeover in 1975, gently bred, 15-year-old Teeda and 15 members of her upper-class family were among millions driven from Phnom Penh into the countryside. The Pol Pot regime used systematic mass genocide against its own people, especially the educated and helpless, to wipe out the old society. Before Teeda's family emigrated to America in 1980, they led a slavelike existence, working in labor crews to clear jungles, build dams with their bare hands and plant rice in snake- and leech-infested paddies. Ably assisted by Criddle, who sponsored their emigration, Teeda recalls a life of constant terror, climaxed by two perilous attempts to escape across the mined and patrolled border into Thailand after the defeat of the Khmer Rouge by the Vietnamese. These two women have created a poignant testament to the human will to survive. (July 24)
Reviewed on: 06/26/1987
Release date: 07/01/1987
Genre: Nonfiction
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