Fire in the Lake

By Frances FitzGerald,

Book cover of Fire in the Lake: The Vietnamese and the Americans in Vietnam

Book description

Frances FitzGerald's landmark history of Vietnam and the Vietnam War, "a compassionate and penetrating account of the collision of two societies that remain untranslatable to one another." (New York Times Book Review)

This magisterial work, based on Frances FitzGerald's many years of research and travels, takes us inside the history…

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Why read it?

1 author picked Fire in the Lake as one of their favorite books. Why do they recommend it?

I loved this book because Fitzgerald is a journalist, not a historian, so her writing is vivid, fluent, and readable. This is so much more than a history of the war. She plunges into the complex story of Vietnam’s history and culture, setting the stage for America’s unfortunate involvement and the subsequent tragic events.
Fitzgerald first went to Vietnam in 1966, and, when this book came out in 1972, it was the first history of Vietnam written by an American. The New York Times called it “A compassionate and penetrating account of the collision of two societies that remain untranslatable…

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