The Best We Could Do

“How much of ME is my own, and how much is stamped into my blood and bone, predestined?”

In Thi Bui’s “The Best We Could Do,” she attempts to track her family’s history and describe the struggles of immigration and the generational and cultural gap of a displaced Vietnam family living in America.

No matter who you are, there are differences in your generation and your elders’ generation, and with that often comes a misunderstanding, a disconnect, but when your parents hold onto a culture from a country and time that you barely remember, the gap widens, and the struggle to understand one another becomes more difficult.

Thi attempts to research her family to help bridge the gap between her and her parents, and in doing so, shows readers, especially American readers, a side of Vietnam that we are unfamiliar with from our general learning. Reading “The Best We Could Do” gave me a broad history of Vietnam through the lens of Bui’s ancestors ranging from her grandparents until the time that she left and from the perspective of varying economic classes.

The story is relevant today and will remain timeless as there will also be families looking to escape their war-torn nation for a better life and the divide in the generational and cultural understanding within a family.

Writer/Artist: Thi Bui

Release: March 2017

Rating: 5/5

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