Book Reviews

Le Pham Le’s poetry carries a fresh power in the clean simplicity of its images and in its depth of genuine feeling. Her poetic habits are those of Viet Nam’s sung ca dao poetry. Bringing this to English and America is a gift.
JOHN BALABAN, Poet and Translator of Spring Essence: The Poetry of Ho Xuan Huong

From Where The Wind Blows, a new collection of poetry by Le Pham Le, is a collage of vivid memories of her first homeland and of her journey to her new one. It is filled with love and hope. The winds, which have blown her to California have not erased her memories of the past, but brightened her hopes for the future. Would we all be so wind blown.

 Le Pham Le’s poetry, while articulates with rare aroma and imagination, skillfully negotiates life’s tensions and sorrows. Aesthetically, it alerts the reader to the prospect of harmony and hints of novel possibilities for a richer creativity. It also has the magical power to entrance and to re-direct one’s attention. The poems are enchanting and beautifully translated.
DR. QUANG PHU VAN, Professor at Yale University

This is truly an outstanding book with finely crafted poems and splendid translation…. After all, it is the sheer beauty and sensuousness of Le Pham Le’s poetry that wins the heart. In ‘Who Creates the Wind,’ she writes, ‘Oh, no! Don’t place my photograph on the altar yet/an angel has brought me safe to shore…’ Her great good fortune, and ours.

Thi tập Gió Thổi Phương Nào chứa đựng một nội dung tình cảm rất phong phú đầy tính nhân bản. Tình yêu quê hương, gia đình, thầy trò, bạn bè được thể hiện qua những vần thơ nhẹ nhàng, dung dị, chân phương mà rất gợi cảm nên dễ đi vào lòng người.

Indeed, Le Pham Le’s poetry stirs the heart. Her story is powerful, revealing, and real. Her determination is untouchable. And her words are lovely – as lovely as the wind dancing over wavelets early in the evening on a summer night.
DIANE BUCCHERI, Editor of OCEAN Magazine

Truly A Magical Tale: “Magical Voice in the Forest” is truly a magical tale of fate, love, and mystery told in beautiful poetry. Children, teenagers and adults of all backgrounds will love the beautiful illustrations and will be enchanted as they turn each page. The writing is in English, but the heart of the story undeniably captures the essence of Vietnamese folklore and fairy tales. This is a must-read for those hoping to spark the imagination and touch the heart.
TUE, 5-star review from Amazon

Like A Gentle Rain: Like a gentle rain, the lyrical poems from Le Pham Le’s “From Where the Wind Blows” quiets the mind and draws the reader into the privacy of her remembering. As I read, my heart opened. I cried, feeling her words that evoke so much emotion. This book is for anyone who has ever wondered about the experiences of a Vietnamese refugee. More than that, for anyone whose own personal life journey may have left them feeling like a refugee, this collection of poems gives a glimpse. The precision of her words carries powerful meanings that open the door to an inner world of pain, turmoil, beauty and triumph.

“Simplicity,” so aptly named, is one of my favorites because her language is so pure. Potent. This poem ends with . . . “Wind, carry my worries to the other side of the sea!” Whether by wind or by words, her poems transport the reader into a different realm, and I was uplifted by the flight.

I look forward to more writings from Le Pham Le.
BAJI, 5-star review from

Magnificent and Thoroughly Captivating: There are few sources of poetry today that can capture the essence of the Vietnamese-American experience with such vivid imagery and a slew of emotions. Le’s poetry emits a profound sense of sorrow as she embarks on a literary journey back to her past, and the reader cannot help but feel as if they are traveling alongside her. It has been decades since the end of the Vietnam War, yet each one of Le’s poems manages to bring the struggles of that time period to life. Without a doubt, Le’s poetry is eloquent, poignant, deeply touching, extremely captivating, timeless, and speaks to all generations.
AMAZON CUSTOMER, 5-star review from

Must Read Book of Poetry: I had the pleasure of meeting Le Pham Le and hearing her read from her new book of poems. She is a terrific writer who beautifully recounts her experiences traveling by boat with her husband and baby to the United States from Vietnam and her experiences in a refugee camp. Her poems will bring you to tears. Having recently lost my own mother, I was very touched by “When the Last Leaf Falls.” a poem she wrote in memory of her beloved father. Anyone who appreciates poetry, will find comfort and pleasure in Le Pham Le’s new book of poems.
LINDA CHILDERS, 5-star review from

 Poetic Grace: Le Pham Le’s ‘From Where the Wind Blows’ should be read by anyone who wishes to more profoundly grasp the experience of a Vietnamese woman, writer, and intellectual departing her beloved homeland, torn apart by strife, for America. Moreover, it should be read by anyone hoping to better grasp the art of poetry. Rarely has a contemporary poet so skillfully braided the most poignant of experiences together with imagistic beauty, economy of words, subtle political commentary, and spiritual grace.
RANDOLPH CONNER, 5-star review from

Very Touching: Le Pham Le has a great eye for the most important and moving moments of her journey from Vietnam to America. The emotional peaks and many lows a captured in a simple, direct and touching poetic narrative that places the reader in the heart of the journey Le Pham Le and many other Vietnamese were forced to take after their country was devastated by war. These telling vignettes leave a lasting impression, one that mixes the pain of loss with the need to move on.
AMAZON CUSTOMER, 5-star review from 

Vietnamese Cultural Revival in the USA: Recognizing that Southeast Asian youth are quickly forgetting the lessons of traditional culture, war and the refugee experience, Le Pham eloquently recounts in poetry her personal experience. Printed in both Vietnamese and English, Le records the essential emotional experience. Nostalgic homeland and savage high seas memories are carefully detailed in a wonderful conciseness only possible in poetry. A must read for social science teachers and Vietnamese youth.
ERNEST A. TUFFT, 5-star review from

Like A Dream: I do not know fluent Vietnamese, or really any for that matter. The English translations are so florid and calming that I can only imagine that the poetry must be majestic when spoken in Vietnamese. The poems are such a powerful introspective look into the hear and mind of a very talented soulful poet. I am not a large fan of poetry, but this is just an amazing poetic compilation.
AMAZON CUSTOMER, 5-star review from  

Le’s Lyrical Imagination: Le Pham Le is a brilliant poet drawing on various traditions in her background to create moments frozen in time and yet alive with beauty and movement. To hear Le Pham Le perform her work is an additional treat but reading them by yourself can transport you to another time, another place forever. Bravo!
J. PERRY, 5-star review from