The Happiest Refugee is a heart-warming and touching story that takes the reader though Do ‘s experiences and hardships that went from fleeing Vietnam when he was a child to his successful career as a well-known comedian, artist, actor and author. Throughout the text Do explores many ideas and issues relating to the concept of belonging and the struggles they encounter and how they overcome them in order to make their life better. Anh Do invites reader to observe events, participate emotionally, understand his experiences and to respond to characters.Anh Do’s writes about his childhood and having the struggle with poverty them generates sympathy towards him. Do talks about him at the age of fourteen delivery pamphlets to earn some money for his mother to help his family financially. Anh uses a first point of view to show the hardship he went though “I slung the straps over my shoulder and it was lumpy and unbalanced… ten pm that night we slumped down into the bed absolutely exhausted.
We still had a third to go.” Though this technique readers are shown how he felt, what happened to him and how it made him feel. This invites the readers to respond with sympathy towards his problems as a child and begins to build his unique characteristics that makes him behave the way he does further into the book.
Do’s attention to detail to recreating simple family events allows readers to react in a warm and positive manner towards his mother. Do achieves this by using dialogue, his mother invites his distant cousin “to stay” as “they’ve got no one. 6 months after this event his mother assisted the women to find a job to kick-start their life again.
Though the use of dialogue readers is positioned to be awed by Anh’s mother’s generosity towards other peopleThe memoir frequently portrays Anh’s and his family’s positive attitude and their gratefulness even when given small things that are considered normal in many lives. Anh discusses how they got free clothes after they arrived from the escape of Vietnam while using a humorous tone in aspects of the scene to engage the reader. “Uncle Huy found a certain pair of jeans … he walked around in them with a check me out, how good do I look grin.” Do’s mother responded with “Look at the zip, those are women’s pants.” Do uses humour to shows that his family’s relationship is very strong and loving as well as show their positive attitude and their ability to see the good in everything even after an awful and fearful trip on the boat. Do’s effectiveness in re-creating simple events lets the reader see the charming, heart-warming quality of each family member.