Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai


Born into the Vietnam War in 1973, Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai grew up witnessing the war’s devastation and its aftermath. She worked as a street seller and rice farmer before winning a scholarship to attend university in Australia. She is the author of eight books of poetry, fiction and non-fiction in Vietnamese, and her writing has been translated and published in more than 15 countries. She has been honored with some of the top literary awards of Vietnam including the Poetry of the Year 2010 Award from the Hanoi Writers Association. Her debut novel and first book in English, THE MOUNTAINS SING, was awarded a Lannan Literary Awards Fellowship for contribution to peace and reconciliation and BookBrowse Best Debut Award for 2020. It was named a best book of 2020 by more than ten media establishments including NPR. Quế Mai has a PhD in Creative Writing from Lancaster University. For more information, visit her at