Book Review: First they Killed my Father by Loung Ung

Title: First They Killed My Father
By: Loung Ung
Genre: Memoir 
Pages: 238
Release Date: April 4th, 2006
Publisher: Harper Perennial
Rating: ★★★★☆

Summary from Goodreads:

From a childhood survivor of the Camdodian genocide under the regime of Pol Pot, this is a riveting narrative of war crimes and desperate actions, the unnerving strength of a small girl and her family, and their triumph of spirit.

One of seven children of a high-ranking government official, Loung Ung lived a privileged life in the Cambodian capital of Phnom Penh until the age of five. Then, in April 1975, Pol Pot's Khmer Rouge army stormed into the city, forcing Ung's family to flee and, eventually, to disperse. Loung was trained as a child soldier in a work camp for orphans, her siblings were sent to labor camps, and those who survived the horrors would not be reunited until the Khmer Rouge was destroyed.

Harrowing yet hopeful, Loung's powerful story is an unforgettable account of a family shaken and shattered, yet miraculously sustained by courage and love in the face of unspeakable brutality.


This was a heart wrenching story of survival and loss. What this young girl had to go through to survive these terrible times is terrible and wrong on so many levels. I have an aunt that lived through these times. Surprisingly, her whole family survived, but so many didn't. If only the world was a more loving place. A wonderful read if you can stand the pain.

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