On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. A shattering portrait of a family, a first love and the redemptive power of storytelling, it is as much about the power of telling one’s own story as it is about the obliterating silence of not being heard. Vuong’s poetic deconstruction of youth and otherness is a moving portrayal of queer and immigrant identity.
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On Earth We're Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong
This is a letter from a son to a mother who cannot read. Written when the speaker, Little Dog, is in his late twenties, the letter unearths a family’s history that began before he was born. It tells of Vietnam, of the lasting impact of war, and of his family’s struggle to forge a new future. And it serves as a doorway into parts of Little Dog’s life his mother has never known – episodes of bewilderment, fear and passion – all the while moving closer to an unforgettable revelation. Brilliant, heartbreaking and highly original, Ocean Vuong’s debut novel is a shattering portrait of a family, and a testament to the redemptive power of storytelling.