In Vietnam’s Mekong Delta town of Sa Dec, you will find wonderful food market and the flower markets beloved of the Vietnamese during the Tet Vietnamese New Year Festival. Less well known is the Lover’s House.
This house in all its ornate, shadowy excess, embodies the doomed days of French colonialism and provides a little window into the country’s complex history.
The Lover House is the former home of 27-year-old Huynh Thuy Le, son of a wealthy Chinese family, who had a love affair with a 15-year-old French schoolgirl in the late 1920s, early 1930s.
The young girl was Marguerite Duras who later used the experience to inspire the writing of her 1984 Prix Goncourt-winning, best-selling novel, The Lover (L’Amante) that has been translated into 43 languages and has sold 2.4 million copies.
The two began a love affair that inspired Duras’s 1984 Prix Goncourt-winning best-selling novel, The Lover (L’Amante).
My story was published in Fairfax Media’s The Sydney Morning Herald Traveller and Melbourne Age Traveller and you can see it below, or read the online version here: