Saturday, August 04, 2007

Navy Phim's Reflections

A new book released this month by Wheatmark Book Publishing, Reflections of a Khmer Soul, written by Navy Phim is the latest personal narrative of life growing up and after the Khmer Rouge period in Cambodian history. Hers is the story of the middle generation growing up with, and trying to make sense of, two cultures and two worlds – the beauty and tragedy of her Cambodian past (her Khmer soul) and the comfortable restlessness of her American present. Through stories, memories, and snippets, Navy shares her life journey from her birth place in Battambang, Cambodia to Kao-I-Dang refugee camp on the Thai-Cambodian border, to a refugee processing center in the Philippines, to Long Beach California, home to the largest population of Cambodians outside Southeast Asia. Told from the perspective of a seasoned world traveler, this book offers a unique perspective on both Cambodian and American cultures and history. Navy Phim came to the United States in 1984 when she was nine years old. She graduated from the University of California, Los Angeles in 1999 with a Bachelor’s Degree in English and Anthropology. She also received a Master of Science in Counseling, Student Development in Higher Education from California State University, Long Beach in December 2006. Navy is a world traveler and has returned to Thailand and Cambodia. She has also visited England, Scotland, India, Nepal, Peru, Mexico, Costa Rica and Canada.
Link: website


Anonymous said...

Navy Phim had a website that she wrote about her trip. Anyway, I am trying to get her book.
Andy did get to read autobiography/biography of Heng Ngor, the actor of the Killing Field. I bought it years ago but never dear to read it because I did not want to relive the nightmare of the Khmer Rouge regime. My sister who did not remember anything about the Khmer Rouge because she was little. She found the book and read it. She was really shock to find out what Heng Ngor went through.

Andy said...

Hi, yes Navy did have two websites previously at:
I wish her much success with her book.

Yes, Haing Ngor's story of survival was an incredible read. His personal story was even tougher than the role he portrayed in The Killing Fields. It is still one of the best books I have ever read and will give anyone who reads it a true insight into the Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia in the 70s. Ngor himself was a one-off, and I wish that I had had the opportunity to meet him. Alas, his untimely death robbed us all of an inspiring individual, of whom Cambodia should be very proud.

Navy Phim said...

Those two websites are defunct now and the travel pictures are on my new website: The stories of my travel are in the book.

I highly recommend Haing Ngor's book: "The Cambodian Odyssey." It may be the definite book on the Killing Field but my favorite is "When Broken Glass Floats" though.

There were sections of Haing Ngor's book that I skipped. I enjoyed reading the book and the reflections, gaining an understanding of the Killing Fields, the struggle that people endured and suffered, and the story of survival and the human ability to overcome obstacle even something as terrible as the Killing Fields but I skimmed the part about the torture he endured. I am already aware of it and felt enough pain in my soul. I couldn’t read those graphic details and had it lingered in my head again.