Update from Book World

Her Own Vietnam has been out in the world for four months now. Let me share a little about what that feels like for the author.

Publishing a novel is like releasing a long, silvery fish into a swift-moving river. You know your fish is out there, you catch a glimpse of it now and then, but you can never be sure exactly where it is or what is happening in its dim watery world.

Book reviews

One glimpse I get of my novel is through book reviews. Her Own Vietnam has gotten some great reviews, most recently a five-star review in the Spring 2015 edition of the magazine Foreword Reviews. You can read excerpts from all the reviews here.

Reader reviews

For me, the most meaningful reviews are the comments I get from readers, either through email or on sites like Amazon and Goodreads. Here are a few: Paul Hellweg is a male Vietnam veteran and a writer himself, with a Vietnam website (www.VietnamWarPoetry.com). He wrote:

I’ve just finished Her Own Vietnam, and reading it has been a meaningful experience. Lynn Kanter accurately portrays the long-term effects of PTSD. In particular, I liked and appreciated the acknowledgement of how people with no experience of psychological trauma cannot comprehend how the victim suffers. Like Della Brown in the novel, I’ve encountered way too many folks who think the war is all over now and I should just forget about it… I also like the way the book portrays the loneliness of a trauma survivor living in a world where no one else understands you.

On the Goodreads website, a reader wrote:

Five stars means “Drop what you’re doing and read it. This book blew me out of the water.” Her Own Vietnam gets five stars.

Each member of the cast is vividly drawn, none is a type or stereotype, yet as an ensemble they convey the complex, bitter legacy of the Vietnam War and even offer hope that we might as a people come to terms with it if we can muster the courage to look ourselves in the eye. Her Own Vietnam is a tour de force.

And on Amazon, where all of Her Own Vietnam’s reviews have been five stars, one of my favorites said:

This is a wonderful novel. It was so enthralling, I didn’t want the book to end! The characters (love, love, love Della and Charlene) and plot lines are rich, moving and powerful. Allows all of us to ask, no matter our own experience or inexperience with matters of war, incredibly difficult questions of ourselves and our society about the ravages that violent conflict has on the human race.

A special thrill

And one more glimpse: The renowned historian David Roediger (author of The Wages of Whiteness) is teaching Her Own Vietnam in his American studies class at the University of Kansas. I love the idea of young people using my book as a tool to examine and understand the Vietnam war.

Swimming away

So, my novel is swimming out there somewhere. As I stand on the riverbank, straining to see that flash of silver, I can only hope that each reader who finds Her Own Vietnam will tell one other person, “Hey, you’ve got to read this book.” Irma HOV and coffee

Update from Book World

My book has been out in the world for seven weeks now. Some quick updates:

Mimi and HOV








Friends are showing off their literary taste.


And their interior decorating!












Finally Amazon is showing the book as in stock, rather than back-ordered. And based on the customer reviewspeople seem to like it. (The publisher has always had Her Own Vietnam in stock – and selling for less than Amazon charges.)

Tis the season to curl up with a good book – mine or someone else’s.


A book is born!

Today is the official birthday of Her Own Vietnam, known in literary parlance as the pub date, release date or launch date.

bday cake colorful

Why so many candles? Because it took me so many years to write the book.

What happens next?

Here’s what happens when a book is launched.

– You can now buy it as a paperback or ebook. Click here for details.

– You can win a free signed copy on Goodreads until November 3.

– You can join me on visits to a series of wonderful book blogs. Click here for specifics.

– You can wow your book club with these discussion questions.

Most of all

Most of all, what happens when a book is launched is that people start to read it. (At least I fervently hope so.) People I know, who will read it out of kindness or to see what the heck I’ve been up to all this time. People I don’t know. People who will have their own opinions and perspectives.

Maybe even you.

Her Own Vietnam belongs to you now. I hope you two will be very happy together.

Cat and HOV

Update from Book World


It’s taken so long, but now that it’s almost here, I can’t quite believe it. Her Own Vietnam will be published on November 1, 2014 – a little more than 48 hours from now.

So what exactly happens on the publication day?

On November 1, the book becomes available for sale on book websites and in some brick and mortar bookstores. (It’s already available from the publisher, here.) You’ll be able to read Her Own Vietnam as a paperback, a Kindle book, or any other ebook format.

If you belong to Goodreads, they will be giving away two signed copies of Her Own Vietnam starting October 30 at midnight. I’ll post that link when it goes live.

I’ll be skipping around the Internet, being interviewed and posting guest articles at a variety of really cool book blogs and sites. And my publisher is expecting reviews of the novel to appear in some key outlets over the next few weeks.

There’s a way you can get into the act too: by reading Her Own Vietnam and writing a brief review (1-2 sentences will do) on book sites like Amazon and Goodreads.

I’ll be sharing with you all the details as we get closer and closer to the book launch. And after that, Her Own Vietnam will no longer be mine. It will belong to you, the reader.