On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is simply a beautiful book. It is the memoir a young man who is the son of a Vietnamese immigrant single mother. The whole book is written as a letter to his mother, although she cannot read so he knows she will never read his words.
The author describes his childhood in Hartford and touches on his mother and grandmother’s lives in Vietnam during the war years before they left for America. Their lives were full of intense pain and hardship, but at times there was immense joy in their little family. As the son grows, he falls in love with another teenaged boy. Their story of young love is both intimate and painful and left a weight on my heart.
I was not surprised to learn the author is a poet as his words had such weight and rhythm. I would recommend this book for its superb language, but it is not heavy on plot. This is truly a memoir and one without a concrete structure. The descriptions were so vivid, it was like someone was describing a movie to me as if I was wearing a blindfold. I was not surprised to learn the author is a poet as his words had such weight and rhythm.
Some stats, as I like stats:
Finished on January 25, 2020, took 10 days to read
4 stars on Goodreads
Please feel free to view my other musings (mainly book reviews and cat hammock stories) on Instagram