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Only the heart

             Sweet foretaste of the summer wind, .
             Across the waving green of the young rice, .
             Across the unchained current of the distant dream, .
             Between the singing strands of taut-stretched barrier-wire, .
             To speak the future freely .
             In guarded whispers .
             Only the prisoner knows these things .
             A composition of recollections both in the past and present, this novel portrays the hardships and struggles that a Vietnamese family endures through the years of approaching communism. Their desperate flea from the only home they have ever known and the loved ones that they may never see again, all in search of a place where freedom and hope are as abundant and routine as the air that you breathe. .
             Only the Heart, a touching novel explicitly composed by Brian Caswell and David Phu An Chiem, depicts a terrifying side to life which is beyond even the vast imagination of the many Australians and people raised in and living in a "lucky" country, such as ours. Lucky in the sense that freedom, opinions, safety, choices a future, these are things taken for granted, considered a right as opposed to a place where these significant components of life exist only as a distant and desperate hope clinging on the edge of the lack of decisions that is and seemingly always will be, your life. .
             A horrifying truth of today's world, effectively told and emotionally vivid, this tale brings a whole new perspective into the lives of those who have not experienced such trying circumstances and hence form pre-conceived prejudices in their minds about such people in need of help, whether they be asylum seekers, refugees, illegal immigrants, or boat people the inner intent of this plot forces the biased mind to think about it from their point of view, their situation. .
             Only the Heart encourages its audience to take a deeper look, not to try and classify life and its experiences as those of black and white. To recognise the grey areas of life and discover the aspects of life from which other people derive their perspectives, values and lifestyles.

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