This past week I read two books in preparation for my first trip to Cambodia and my sixth visit to Sri Lanka. I highly suggest both.
I try to read first-person stories from a country before I visit. Although both books address profound loss I realize there are many fully positive stories from these countries as well.
First They Killed My Father is an autobiographical story told by a young, well-to-do girl from Phnom Penh who survives the genocide arranged by the Khmer Rouge in Cambodia from 1975 to 1979.
Wave recounts the loss of a woman’s family while on vacation in Yala when the 2004 South Asian tsunami struck Sri Lanka.
While both stories are breathtakingly horrific and tragic both women are courageous, determined and resilient despite seemingly insurmountable heartbreak.