“Before the monsoon came the mango rains, which were short, hard downpours that forced the mango trees to surrender their just-ripe fruits and tantalized the city’s inhabitants with a hint of the release the monsoon rains would soon bring. Julia Galbraith, a newly arrived Foreign Service Officer just short of her 23rd birthday, stood on the terrace of her ground-floor apartment on the rue Pasteur and watched the rain fall. She was not beautiful, or even pretty, but she was tall and slender and blonde, which almost made up for the lack. Though a little shy, she exuded the freshness and vulnerability of a woman on the brink of life….”

Mango Rains is a story of love, loss and political intrigue in Southeast Asia during the turbulent 1960s. While war rages next door in Viet Nam, expats in the sleepy, peaceful Cambodian capital fall in and out love and dance to the tune of the famously mercurial Prince Sihanouk. As the gentle mango rains give way to the tumultuous monsoon, world events—the assassinations of JFK and South Viet Nam’s Ngo Dinh Diem—precipitate a crisis that scatters the characters to the far corners of the globe.



Reception and Reading

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“Mango Rains is a lyrical, evocative novel about the lushness of expatriate life …Anne Oman’s narrative powers are seductive—and her stories ring with authenticity.” –Kai Bird, Pulitzer Prize winning biographer and author of Crossing Mandelbaum Gate, a memoir of growing up as an expatriate.

“With her exceptional sense of place, Anne Oman transports us back to Southeast Asia just as it begins to explode.” –Elizabeth Becker, author of When the War Was Over: Cambodia and the Khmer Rouge Revolution.

“From its opening paragraph, Mango Rains put me in mind of quiet Americans and opium-scented Graham Greene Asian nights. …. It’s a lovely and tragic cautionary tale, well told.” –Paul Hendrickson, author of Hemingway’s Boat and Plagued by Fire.

“Through Anne Oman’s prose, a reader can feel the tropical heat, taste the chili shrimp and smell the frangipani blossoms in Southeast Asia…. An enchanting portrait of a very particular time and place and of the people who lived through it.” –Bonny Wolf, author of Talking with My Mouth Full.

“A rich tapestry of story and character that begins in the U.S. expat community in Cambodia a half-century ago and then moves, in ebbs and flows, to include so many more parts of the world.” –Tim Wendel, author of Castro’s Curveball.

A “richly descriptive and poignant book… An engaging, disturbing tale of love, loss and human frailties set against cross-cultural conflicts.” —Kirkus Reviews
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