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|Format: DRM Protected ePub|
Vendor: Thomas Nelson
Publication Date: 2014
The account of Dr. Chung and his family will inspire you to believe in second chances and miracles and the God who gives them both.
-Max Lucado, New York Times best-selling author
My name is Vinh Chung.
This is a story that spans two continents, ten decades, and eleven thousand miles.
When I was three and a half years old, my family was forced to flee Vietnam in June 1979, a place we had never heard of somewhere in the heartland of America.
Several weeks later my family lay half-dead from dehydration in a derelict fishing boat jammed with ninety-three refugees lost in the middle of the South China Sea. We arrived in the United States with nothing but the clothes on our backs and unable to speak a single word of English.
Today my family holds twenty-one university degrees.
How we got from there to here is quite a story.
Where the Wind Leads is the remarkable account of Vinh Chung and his refugee familys daring escape from communist oppression for the chance of a better life in America. Its a story of personal sacrifice, redemption, endurance against almost insurmountable odds, and what it truly means to be American.
All author royalties from the sale of this book will go to benefit World Vision.
Vinh Chung was born in South Vietnam, just eight months after it fell to the communists in 1975. His family was wealthy, controlling a rice-milling empire worth millions; but within months of the communist takeover, the Chungs lost everything and were reduced to abject poverty.
Knowing that their children would have no future under the new government, the Chungs decided to flee the country. In 1979, they joined the legendary boat people and sailed into the South China Sea, despite knowing that an estimated two hundred thousand of their countrymen had already perished at the hands of brutal pirates and violent seas.
Where the Wind Leads follows Vinh Chung and his family on their desperate journey from pre-war Vietnam, through pirate attacks on a lawless sea, to a miraculous rescue and a new home in the unlikely town of Fort Smith, Arkansas. There Vinh struggled against poverty, discrimination, and a bewildering language barrieryet still managed to graduate from Harvard Medical School.
Where the Wind Leads is Vinhs tribute to the courage and sacrifice of his parents, a testimony to his familys faith, and a reminder to people everywhere that the American dream, while still possible, carries with it a greater responsibility.
Vinh Chung graduated Harvard magna cum laude with a BA in biology and attended Harvard Medical School for his MD. Dr. Chung also studied at the University of Sydney as a Fulbright Scholar and completed a masters of pharmaceutical sciences. He completed his dermatology residency at Emory University, where he served as chief resident. He currently serves on World Vision's National Leadership Council. Dr. Chung and his wife Leisle have three children and run a successful private practice.
Tim Downs is the author of nine novels including the Christy Award-winning PlagueMaker and the highly acclaimed series of Bug Man novels. Tim lives in North Carolina with his wife Joy. They have three grown children.
DianeTexasAge: 45-54Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Riveting story of God's graceJuly 17, 2014DianeTexasAge: 45-54Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5Riveting account of one family's journey from great wealth to poverty in post war Vietnam. The Chung family fled communist controlled Vietnam, ultimately being abandoned on the South China Sea to die. God provides the rescue and a new home in America.
Janice PowellOwasso, OKAge: 45-54Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5Moving story of God's providenceJuly 5, 2014Janice PowellOwasso, OKAge: 45-54Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I just finished this book about a Chinese family who escaped from Communist Vietnam in the late 70s. Very moving and informative, it is an amazing story of God's providence. As a teen I faintly remember hearing about the "boat people" but had no idea what they experienced. And sadly, I probably didn't care beyond a fleeting moment of sympathy. This book will take you where they traveled and show you what it meant to them to come to America. Very much worth the read.
TrudiBath, NYAge: 55-65Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5A Story of Loss, Rescue and RedemptionApril 28, 2014TrudiBath, NYAge: 55-65Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5While I do love to read for a variety of reasons, there are some books that come along that hit one at a deeper level_these are the books that cut into your bedtime and then into your sleep time as you go over in your head what you just absorbed. Where the Wind Leads was one of those books for me. It's not fiction, or even a biography, but a memoir. For me, it was also a history lesson.
Where the Wind Leads tells the story of a family - a well-to-do Chinese family - who happened to live in South Vietnam. Through various set-backs and wars, they had managed to prosper, but the Vietnam War which ended with the takeover by Communism, proved to be the one storm they could not ride out.
I grew up during the Vietnam War - living an insulated life as many of us did - we heard of terrible things, of young men killed, of anti-war demonstrations, but we did not hear the story as told by a Vietnamese family. And I'd heard of the "boat people" - those who were sponsored by churches in America, starting over in a new land. But that sentence covers most of what I knew.
Vinh Chung tells the story from a different perspective - as one of the youngest children in a large family, and with the memories of his family to help him. He tells the story of the money it took to bribe officials to leave, the fear of boarding a boat that was barely sea-worthy, for an unknown future, of moving slowly through heavy waves with no land in sight, through pirate-infested waters. And then, when the joy of land appeared, to find it patrolled by inhospitable soldiers, because of the thousands of refugees who had already come. This is a story of hardship and hunger and fear and courage, but as you continue to read, you realize that it's also a story of God's grace. For the thousands who tried but failed, for the unbelievable odds against this one family and their overcrowded boat, you cannot miss that God had his hand on them or they would never have succeeded. And even with little knowledge of Christianity, Vinh's father came to realize that the Creator God was the only One to appeal to.
In a time when we continue to hear nightly news stories about refugees, you need to read this book to understand what the word "refugee" means in human terms. If you enjoy reading stories of God's grace, of people overcoming with God's help, then you need to read this book. And if you're just looking for a good inspirational book, pick this one! You won't be sorry.
I received a free copy of this book in exchange for my fair and honest review.
KyliegirlMassachusettsAge: 45-54Gender: female5 Stars Out Of 5A powerful, inspiring memoirApril 21, 2014KyliegirlMassachusettsAge: 45-54Gender: femaleQuality: 5Value: 5Meets Expectations: 5I loved this book.
Where the Wind Leads is the story of a family forced out of Vietnam in the aftermath of the Vietnam war. The first part of the book chronicles the life they abandoned when they fled and their harrowing journey as unwanted "boat people" in desperate search of a place to land.
Then the story shifts. They are welcomed to a small town in Arkansas, and face the challenge of learning an entirely new culture. This is an especially strong section, as the author does a great job of detailing small cultural differences and how they add up to make communication and integration unexpectedly difficult.
Then my favorite part is where he shares about being a nerdy high school kid trying to connect with a girl he's attracted to. These scenes are just so sweet and hapless, and they had me cheering for him and laughing at the same time. Also, they provide a nice balance to the intensity of the first part of the book. It was nice to see a child who almost didn't survive wrestling with everyday questions about what to say to a girl.
The back cover of this book calls it "a story of personal sacrifice, redemption, endurance against almost insurmountable odds, and what it truly means to be American." Often, cover copy is hyperbole, but in this case the book more than delivers. I'm still thinking about this story days after turning the last page. Highly recommend.
Disclosure: I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.