A Clash of Innocents

Published on Sunday 3rd October 2010 by DJ Kirkby

I am delighted to be able to welcome Sue Guiney to my blog on her virtual book tour, not only because she writes beautifully but also because she is such a nice person. I have been looking forward to reading Sue’s second novel – A Clash of Innocents -ever since I finished reading her first one – Tangled Roots.

“It’s not supposed to be cold in February, not in Phnom Penh. Deborah, a 60-year-old American expat, is on her way back to the Khmer Home for Blessed Children which she has run for ten years. A young woman in her twenties is waiting for her. Another American, but with flip-flops and a backpack, she asks, ‘Are you Deborah Young? I’m here to help.”

So begins a story of hidden identities and questioned motives. Who is this young woman? Who is Deborah? Who are any of the displaced Westerners who find themselves raising the leftover children of Cambodia’s violent past? Against her better judgment and building suspicions, Deborah allows the young woman, Amanda, to stay. But when a sick infant is left on their doorstep, the horror of the young woman’s past catches up with her and infiltrates the orderly workings of Deborah’s home. The precarious well-being of Deborah’s ‘family’ of forty forgotten Khmer children is jeopardized, as is her own emotional life.

Against the backdrop of Cambodia’s violent past and the beginnings of its new Tribunal for ‘justice’, a story of displaced souls unfolds. In Cambodia, innocents are everywhere. Everyone is innocent, or so they would like to believe – everyone, except the few who, for their own private reasons, take on the guilt of the many.

Sue not only writes novels, but she writes in other genres as well. Other than novels and poetry, what else does Sue write? Leave your answer in the comment box for your chance to win a copy of A Clash Of Innocents and I’ll post the winner next Sunday.

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