Andrew Lam is one of the premier interpreters of the Vietnamese diaspora in the United States. He is not only a highly talented and perceptive writer but also a personal participant in the drama played out in the Vietnamese refugee community here since the fall of Saigon some 30 years ago.
His stage is a unique one in many ways. The initial Vietnamese refugees were different in that they did not come to America to seek a better life. Indeed, many (including Lam's family) wound up far less well-off here than in their native South Vietnam. Rather, they came as defeated warriors and other committed participants in a cause that irrevocably maintained its hold on many of them even here.