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Timeless Wonders of Vietnam, Cambodia & the Mekong

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

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Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

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Eyewitness Guide Vietnam and Angkor Wat

Eyewitness Guide Vietnam and Angkor Wat

by Eyewitness Guides

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 312 PAGES
  • BEST SELLER

Featuring innovative site diagrams, local maps and hundreds of color photographs, this handy companion introduces the culture, history and attractions of Vietnam. (VNM102, $25.00)

Understanding Vietnam

Understanding Vietnam

by Neil Jamieson

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 1995
  • PAPER
  • 428 PAGES

Jamieson's ambitious primer addresses politics, social history, village life, structural renewal, literature and the arts, illuminating the Vietnamese worldview with insight and depth. It's a terrific introduction to Vietnam. (VNM01, $31.95)

A Dragon Apparent, Travels in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam

A Dragon Apparent, Travels in Cambodia, Laos and Vietnam

by Norman Lewis

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 358 PAGES
  • FAVORITE
  • HARD TO FIND ELSEWHERE

A classic account of travels and adventure during the last years of French Indochina, strong on atmosphere with wonderfully detailed descriptions of local cultures and archaeological treasures. First published in 1951. (SEA40, $33.95)

Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia Map

Vietnam, Laos, Cambodia Map

by Nelles

  • 2013
  • MAP

A great folded map of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia at a scale of 1:1,500,000. With inset maps for Central Vientiane, Hanoi, Luang Prabang, Phnom Penh, and Ho Chi Minh City (Saigon). Two sides. 19.5 x 31 inches. (SEA75, $13.95)

 
Angkor Map

Angkor Map


by Dawn Rooney

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2007
  • PAPER

A site plan and pocket guide to the city of Angkor at a scale of 1:40,000. (CBD16, $12.95)

Insight Guide Vietnam

Insight Guide Vietnam


by Insight Guides | Scott Rutherford

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 384 PAGES

A highly recommended guide to history, culture and popular destinations, featuring essays, informative maps and photographs. (VNM02, $24.99)

Lonely Planet Vietnamese Phrasebook

Lonely Planet Vietnamese Phrasebook


by Nguyen Xuanthu

  • LANGUAGE & PHRASEBOOKS
  • 2013
  • PAPER
  • 284 PAGES

A handy palm-sized guide to pronunciation, grammar and essential vocabulary for the traveler. (VNM20, $8.99)

Odyssey Guide Angkor

Odyssey Guide Angkor


by Dawn Rooney

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 496 PAGES

The sixth edition of Rooney's indispensable guide to Khmer culture and history. Includes monuments, temple plans, color photographs and practical information about Siem Reap. (CBD05, $27.95)

A Traveller's History of Southeast Asia

A Traveller's History of Southeast Asia


by J.M. Barwise | Nicholas J. White

  • HISTORY
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 352 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

A compact history of the region, including the Khmer and the various ancient kingdoms that produced Borobudur, Angkor and other architectural marvels. (SEA36, $14.95)

Fire in the Lake

Fire in the Lake


by Frances FitzGerald

  • HISTORY
  • 2002
  • PAPER
  • 496 PAGES

A classic historical, political and cultural portrait of the Vietnam War, seen through the eyes of the Vietnamese. Winner of both the Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award, FitzGerald, a staff writer at the New Yorker and a reporter in Vietnam, presents a vivid image of a revolution and a clear-sighted case for why the U.S offensive was doomed from the start. (VNM12, $18.99)

The Mekong, Turbulent Past, Uncertain Future

The Mekong, Turbulent Past, Uncertain Future


by Milton Osborne

  • HISTORY
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 320 PAGES

A cultural history of the great river from prehistory to European exploration, colonial tensions and modern challenges. It's an engaging introduction to the history of Southeast Asia. (SEA28, $16.00)

Vietnam: Journeys of Body, Mind, and Spirit

Vietnam: Journeys of Body, Mind, and Spirit


by Nguyen Van Huy | Laurel Kendall

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 303 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

A marvelously illustrated portrait of culture and society in contemporary Vietnam, featuring informed essays by diverse contributors with accompanying color photographs. (VNM66, $52.95)

What the Buddha Taught

What the Buddha Taught


by Walpola Sri Rahula

  • RELIGION
  • 1994
  • PAPER
  • 151 PAGES

A classic account of Theravada Buddhism by a respected monk and scholar from Sri Lanka. Provides translations from original texts with explanations for Western readers. A good foundation for any visitor to Southeast Asia. (SEA41, $14.95)

Angkor, Celestial Temples of the Khmer Empire

Angkor, Celestial Temples of the Khmer Empire


by John Sanday

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2002
  • HARD COVER
  • 288 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

Handsomely produced and packaged in a slipcover, this portfolio of 240 striking color photographs by the accomplished Joe Ortner includes accompanying essays on the architecture, history and meaning of Angkor. (CBD31, $95.00)

Art & Architecture of Cambodia

Art & Architecture of Cambodia


by Helen Ibbitson Jessup

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 224 PAGES

Jessup includes not just Angkor Wat and Banteay Srei but also lesser-known recent discoveries in the surrounding jungle in this illustrated overview in the World of Art series. (CBD41, $16.95)

Arts of Southeast Asia

Arts of Southeast Asia


by Fiona Kerlogue

  • ART & ARCHITECTURE
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 224 PAGES

A handsome guide to the art, architecture, textiles and crafts of Southeast Asia. (SEA45, $16.95)

Catfish and Mandala, A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam

Catfish and Mandala, A Two-Wheeled Voyage Through the Landscape and Memory of Vietnam


by Andrew X. Pham

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2000
  • PAPER
  • 344 PAGES

Much more than the story of a road trip, this book combines the author's family history with his many and often-gritty adventures by bicycle through foreign lands including Mexico, Japan and, notably, Vietnam. (VNM50, $17.00)

Dispatches

Dispatches


by Michael Herr

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2009
  • HARD COVER
  • 296 PAGES

Robert Stone introduces this Everyman's Library edition of Herr's impressionistic, troubling memoir of his time as a war correspondent in Vietnam, called by the New York Times the best book yet to be written about the war. (VNM03, $24.00)

First They Killed My Father, A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers

First They Killed My Father, A Daughter of Cambodia Remembers


by Loung Ung

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 240 PAGES

An eye-opening eyewitness account of the atrocities suffered by millions of Cambodians from the perspective of a young girl who survived the reign of Pol Pot and the Khmer Rouge. (CBD13, $15.99)

Ho Chi Minh, A Life


by William Duiker

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2001
  • PAPER
  • 695 PAGES

Dissident, revolutionary and communist, Ho Chi Minh returned from exile to lead North Vietnam's defiant break with colonial France. Duiker charts Ho Chi Minh's long march from son of a scholar in the rural provinces to idealist student in heady 1920s Paris to determined revolutionary. A scholarly, definitive biography. (VNM45, $19.99)

The Gods Drink Whiskey

The Gods Drink Whiskey


by Stephen T. Asma

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2006
  • PAPER
  • 288 PAGES

Asma writes with verve and wit in this eye-opening account of his yearlong stint teaching at the Buddhist Institute in Phnom Penh. His account is both an overview of Theravada Buddhism and a down-to-earth portrait of contemporary Cambodia. (CBD46, $14.99)

The River's Tale, A Year on the Mekong

The River's Tale, A Year on the Mekong


by Edward Gargan

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 352 PAGES

A personal, probing chronicle of a 3,000-mile journey on the river from its source in China through Tibet, Burma, Laos, Thailand and Cambodia to the Mekong Delta in Vietnam. (SEA33, $16.95)

The Sacred Willow, Four Generations in the Life of a Vietnamese Family

The Sacred Willow, Four Generations in the Life of a Vietnamese Family


by Duong Van Mai Elliott

  • BIOGRAPHY/MEMOIR
  • 2000
  • PAPER
  • 506 PAGES

This vivid family saga, beginning with the author's great-grandfather, captures the momentous history of Vietnam over the last 100 years. (VNM39, $24.99)

The Quiet American

The Quiet American


by Graham Greene

  • LITERATURE
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 180 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

A classic, this is the most famous Western work of fiction on Vietnam. Greene writes of a love triangle between a war correspondent, his Vietnamese consort and an optimistic young American during the last days of French rule. (VNM08, $16.00)

Vietnam, A Traveler's Literary Companion

Vietnam, A Traveler's Literary Companion


by John Balaban | Nguyen Qui Duc

  • ANTHOLOGY
  • 1996
  • PAPER
  • 239 PAGES

From rainforest to city, these 17 stories from Vietnam's finest writers explore its landscapes, myths and changing traditions. (VNM04, $14.95)

A Photographic Guide to the Birds of Southeast Asia

A Photographic Guide to the Birds of Southeast Asia


by Morten Strange

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2014
  • PAPER
  • 400 PAGES

A compact photographic guide to almost 700 species of birds in the region, featuring concise descriptions and distribution maps. (SEA39, $24.95)

Birds of Southeast Asia

Birds of Southeast Asia


by Craig Robson

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 304 PAGES

This authoritative, masterfully illustrated guide, featuring 140 color plates covering 1,270 species throughout the region, also includes Malaysia, Burma, Borneo and Indonesia. (SEA49, $37.50)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.