Saturday, July 5, 2008

The Time in Between by David Bergen

Title: The Time in Between
Author: David Bergen
ISBN: 0771011393
Publisher: Emblem Editions/2005
Pages: 273

John Mutford was generous enough to send this book to me to read for The Canadian Book Challenge. But as I received the book late, I read it for The 2nd Canadian Book Challenge, Eh? I had not read any book about Vietnam before this. Hence this was a revealing one for me.

The Time in Between goes from present to past to present. There is a novel too within the novel. It starts with Ada and her brother Jon looking for their father Charles Boatman in Vietnam. He had been a soldier there and returns to the place after 29 years.

His daughter and son Jon arrive there in quest of their father who has disappeared. Their life and thoughts get entangled in that unknown country and what do they find? How does the cultural difference between the two countries affect them. How does the chance encounter with the people of Vietnam touch their lives? What is the secret that their father had kept from them? What is the inner demon that compels Charles Boatman to revisit Vietnam?

The Time in Between is beautifully worded. It is not overtly sentimental. It speaks about the closeness of a family, the love they share. They are close yet respect each others wishes. It speaks of a journey which is emotional and touches our heart and soul. With the use of beautiful metaphors, Bergen has elevated the novel to a higher plane. And this book made sure that I read more books on Vietnam war.


Serena said...

FYI, In order to count for the Vietnam War Challenge they have to be books READ in 2010.

But I will be happy to add this link to the soon-to-be created Vietnam Book Reviews list and the recommended reading list.

Serena said...

Gautami: OK, no problem. I thought that’s what you meant at first. LOL We will add it. Be sure to fill out this form to officially sign up for the 2010 challenge:

It could be my foggy head too, since I have a head cold.

Tina said...

Thanks for such a thoughtful review. I'm definitely going to put this on my list for the Vietnam War read.

Tina at Tutu's Two Cents"

Wanda said...

I recently finished 'The Time In Between' for the 5th Canadian Book Challenge and quite enjoyed it. Though the Vietnam War Challenge has ended, another book I'd suggest is 'White Ghost Girls' by Alice Greenway. I read WGG before I started blogging so I don't have a personal review link though The Asian Review of Books did an excellent piece on the book if you're interested.