Viet Thanh Nguyen
Viet Thanh Nguyen’s novel The Sympathizer is a New York Times best seller and won the Pulitzer Prize for Fiction. Other honors include the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, the Edgar Award for Best First Novel from the Mystery Writers of America, the Andrew Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Fiction from the American Library Association, the First Novel Prize from the Center for Fiction, a Gold Medal in First Fiction from the California Book Awards, and the Asian/Pacific American Literature Award from the Asian/Pacific American Librarian Association. His other books are Nothing Ever Dies: Vietnam and the Memory of War (a finalist for the National Book Award in nonfiction and the National Book Critics Circle Award in General Nonfiction) and Race and Resistance: Literature and Politics in Asian America. He is a University Professor, the Aerol Arnold Chair of English, and a Professor of English, American Studies and Ethnicity, and Comparative Literature at the University of Southern California.
The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen follows a half-French, half-Vietnamese man serving as a spy for the Communist forces in the final days of the Vietnam War. The novel is framed as a confession written by the narrator to a mysterious commandant, by whom he is being held prisoner. The narrator is forced to abandon Vietnam during the fall of Saigon in order to maintain his cover and to continue spying on the general whom he had been working under for the duration of the war. During his time in America, the narrator becomes a consultant on a Hollywood film about the war, continues spying on the General, and must make increasingly difficult decisions to maintain his cover and navigate his divided loyalties.