In the historical novel, Dara recounts her memoir from her troublesome youth in Cambodia in the 60’s, the Khmer Rouge war and her new life in California. Her traumatic experiences, losing beloved family members, being raped by her own biological father and the cruelties in the concentration camps and killing fields in Cambodia are described in all explicit details, that will not left you emotionally untouched. Dara’s coming of age is exemplary for many others, whether situated in 20th century south Asia, or contemporary war zones in the Middle East or Africa. A strong strive for survival is not sufficient. You may be the regime’s next victim, or have a chance to escape today, unknown what tomorrow will bring. The storyline has many unexpected twists which make curious of whether a happy end really would be an acceptable plot completion.
Relationships, love despite blood lines, loyalty and the quest to come to terms with the past, ready to live today, where tomorrow waits to be lived afterwards. The further I got into this 424 pages memoir, the more it kept me engaged. Din Ka’s balanced mix of storytelling, conversations and time lapses to span Dara’s entire spent life worked out fine. There’s not much attention to the politics or actual goals of Khmer Rouge. Pol Pot‘s name was only revealed to Dara after the war. The brutality of the Cambodian genocide, the fright, fight or flee reaction to stay alive or accept life’s fate is portrayed magnificently.
About the author
Din Ka was three years old when his family first moved to the United States. He’s a graduate of California State University of Fullerton with a Bachelor’s of Arts in TV/Film writing. Where Tomorrow Waits is his first novel. He lives in southern California with his lovely long time girlfriend, Tiffani and their four-legged child (dog) Jezebel.
The author granted me a free copy of this book for an independent, fair, and honest review.