Anyone read the book?

I had to read this book for school and I enjoyed greatly. I heard there was a movie and I had to rent it.

(Some spoilers in this paragraph, so just a warning.)

The movie was pretty good, and followed some events in the book, but Steve was a character that was in the book for about 3-5 sentences. He was one of Lan's (Bay Ly's sister) boyfriends. In the book, she leaves with a man named Ed, and he doesn't kill himself in the US, and Bay Ly doesn't threaten to leave him. Ed ends up dying three years after she goes to the US, not of suicide, but of some sort of disease. And Steve is more like one of the American boyfriends Bay Ly had, who was Jimmy.

The movie was pretty good overall and captured main events, but I don't get why they had Steve in the movie. There was barely a Steve. And I wish they would've showed her with at least one of her American boyfriends, to see how she gets a broken heart from them.

Well, just thought I'd rant real quick. The book is extremely good, so I definitely suggest you guys read it.

Don't think you're more than this or above all this.


The movie is based on Bay Ly's memoirs, which comprise more than "When Heaven and Eearth changed Places" and it's not a literal from-beginning-to-end adaption.

Steve's character is kind of a mix of Le Ly's husbands and boyfriends, but I assume he's generally based on Dennis Hayslip, Le Ly's second husband whom she married in 1974. He was a drinking and violent man and his death was similar to Steve's in the movie. Read his story in Le ly Hayslip's second book "Child of War, Woman of Peace". (I also don't know why the character was given the name of one real person who in fact was someone else, sorry for that!)

Hope that helps a bit!

Suicide is the most sincere form of self-criticism.


On the commentary Oliver Stone mentions that he merged 5 of her american boyfriends into one persona...I juts watched the movie today, I'm looking forward to checking out the book sometime.


"5 of her American boyfriends", sounds like she must not have had any problems getting guys :-)


After being very moved by the film I not only read the book (s) but spent two years on and off "pen palling" with Ley Ly Hayslip. Beautiful Movie, interesting story.