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Battle of the Books

2013 Judge: Thanhha Lai

Thanhha Lai has written exactly one novel, Inside Out & Back Again, so to fill up this bio space she is retyping her name to include its diacritical marks: Thanhhà Lại.  Such a change has no meaning for English readers but it does thrill her mother because a Lại mustn’t ever be mistaken for a Lai.  These tiny pesky marks, not to be confused with accent marks, will be a main feature in Lại’s next novel, Listen, Slowly.  She just submitted the first draft after typing 80 pages in two weeks, so excuse her if this bio lacks focus.  Lại can often be heard muttering to herself, “la révision est toute.”

Thanh Ha Lai


  1. ElleLibrarian says

    Yay! I loved her first book and am looking forward to reading a second one. 🙂

  2. Ohhh, lovely choice. i can’t wait for her next book. I’m not sure whether to be more impress with the fact that her debut novel garnered so much bling for that she can get her computer to place all the necessary notations on her name.

  3. Enjoyed hearing Lai speak a couple of years ago at ALAN! I tell her stories to the students and show my signed copy, they can’t wait to read after that! Looking forward to Listen, Slowly. Great title!

  4. Oh my friend read Inside Out and Back Again and loved it! I have not had a chance to read this but I would really love to!


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