Offsite: Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai at The Ruby

Thursday, March 16, 2023 - 7:00pm

Join us on Thursday, March 16 when we celebrate the release of Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai's latest novel, Dust Child, at The Ruby!
Presented in proud partnership with The Ruby, San Francisco Public Library, Diasporic Vietnamese Artists Network, and Berkeley Department of English

Please note this is a ticketed event.
Tickets are available at the link below:

About This Event
Proof of vaccination is required. Masks are strongly encouraged.

Doors: 6:30pm

Event Start: 7:00pm

Location: The Ruby, SF Mission District (please see FAQ for details about our venue)

Tickets are tiered and include a copy of the book, access to the livestream event, or entry only. See details in the ticketing area.

Copies of the book will be available for purchase at the event.

Please see our FAQ below for further details.

About Dust Child
From the internationally bestselling author of The Mountains Sing, a suspenseful and moving saga about family secrets, hidden trauma, and the overriding power of forgiveness, set during the war and in present-day Việt Nam.

In 1969, sisters Trang and Quỳnh, desperate to help their parents pay off debts, leave their rural village and become “bar girls” in Sài Gòn, drinking, flirting (and more) with American GIs in return for money. As the war moves closer to the city, the once-innocent Trang gets swept up in an irresistible romance with a young and charming American helicopter pilot. Decades later, an American veteran, Dan, returns to Việt Nam with his wife, Linda, hoping to find a way to heal from his PTSD and, unbeknownst to her, reckon with secrets from his past.

At the same time, Phong—the son of a Black American soldier and a Vietnamese woman—embarks on a search to find both his parents and a way out of Việt Nam. Abandoned in front of an orphanage, Phong grew up being called “the dust of life,” “Black American imperialist,” and “child of the enemy,” and he dreams of a better life for himself and his family in the U.S.

Past and present converge as these characters come together to confront decisions made during a time of war—decisions that force them to look deep within and find common ground across race, generation, culture, and language. Suspenseful, poetic, and perfect for readers of Min Jin Lee’s Pachinko or Yaa Gyasi’s Homegoing, Dust Child tells an unforgettable and immersive story of how those who inherited tragedy can redefine their destinies through love, hard-earned wisdom, compassion, courage, and joy.

About Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai
Born and raised in Việt Nam, Nguyễn Phan Quế Mai is the author of the international bestseller The Mountains Sing, runner-up for the 2021 Dayton Literary Peace Prize, winner of the 2020 BookBrowse Best Debut Award, the 2021 International Book Awards, the 2021 PEN Oakland/Josephine Miles Literary Award, and the 2020 Lannan Literary Award Fellowship for Fiction. She has published twelve books of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction in Vietnamese and English and has received some of the top literary prizes in Việt Nam. Her writing has been translated into twenty languages and has appeared in major publications, including the New York Times. She has a PhD in creative writing from Lancaster University. She is an advocate for the rights of disadvantaged groups in Việt Nam and was named by Forbes Vietnam as one of twenty inspiring women of 2021. Dust Child is her second novel. For more information, visit:


  • If your ticket includes a copy of the book, it will be available upon your arrival at the event. We will have additional copies available for purchase at the event.
  • This event will take place at The Ruby in San Francisco's Mission District. The Ruby is a collective of women and nonbinary people, and for the safety of its members their address is not public. Attendees will be sent the address in reminder email two days before the event and on event date. Please do not share this address with anyone who is not attending the event.
  • If you require ASL interpretation for this event, please purchase your ticket by Thursday, March 2 to ensure we can hire interpreters in time.
  • Seating will be first come, first serve.
  • The livestream of this event will be available for seven days after the event.
  • If for whatever reason you are unable to attend but would still like your copy of the book, books will be available for pick up at 1231 9th Ave after the event at no extra charge. If you would like your book shipped, additional charges will apply.
  • Refunds will not be accepted after the event date. No exceptions.
  • We cannot ship books outside of the U.S. We apologize for this inconvenience.
  • To attend the event, you must purchase a ticket through this Eventbrite page. Purchase of Dust Child made through the bookstore website does not grant entry to the event. However, if you have already purchased a copy, please feel free to RSVP for our entry-only tickets.


  • The entrance to this event is at street-level with no stairs leading into or out of the venue.
  • There is only street parking available outside of the venue. Public transportation is encouraged.
  • If you require ASL interpretation for this event, please purchase your ticket by Thursday, March 2 to ensure we can hire interpreters in time.

Please note this is a ticketed event.
Tickets are available at the link below:

Event Categories: