“If I die, I forgive you: if I recover, we shall see.”
—Spanish proverb

“A strange, extraordinary book, something between a quest and a fable.”Washington Writers' Publishing House

The Demon Who Peddled Longing takes you on the quest of an insular boy—a quest to avenge his cousin's murder and to win the heart of a fickle woman. His deliverance lies not in the consummation of these goals but in the dignity with which he pursues them. As poetic as Faulkner, as stark as Cormac McCarthy, The Demon Who Peddled Longing is an absorbing read.”—James Hanna, The Sand Hill Review

“Compelling and beautifully written, Khanh Ha's The Demon Who Peddled Longing is a dark and complex tale of revenge and redemption, a richly accomplished story set in a land still wounded by war.”—Stephen Evans, author of The Marriage of True Minds

In The Demon Who Peddled Longing, the uncoiling of destiny occurs through karmically determined deployment of detail. Set in Vietnam, an unnamed protagonist journeys through a Faulknerian dreamscape where redemption arises out of violence and beauty blossoms from the mire of loss. From the outset, the world of Khanh Ha's novel worlds his characters and, in rare achievement, it is able to world, through a mesmerizing rhythm of language, the reader as well. That this novel is an artistic triumph is an understatement.”—John M. Gist, Red Savina Review


". . . reading of any kind is on the decline. Half the American people never read a newspaper. Half never vote for President. One hopes it is the same half."
—Gore Vidal

Read Chapters 1 & 2

"I would be a liar, a hypocrite, or a fool—and I'm not any of those—to say that I don't write for the reader. I do. But for the reader who hears, who really will work at it, going behind what I seem to say. So I write for myself and that reader who will pay the dues."
—Maya Angelou

Khanh Ha is the author of Flesh (2012, Black Heron Press). He is a three-time Pushcart nominee and the recipient of Greensboro Review's 2014 Robert Watson Literary Prize in Fiction. His work has appeared in Waccamaw Journal, storySouth, Greensboro Review, The Long Story, Permafrost Magazine, Saint Ann's Review, Moon City Review, Red Savina Review, DUCTS, ARDOR, Lunch Ticket, Cha: An Asian Literary Journal, Tayo Literary Magazine, Sugar Mule, Yellow Medicine Review, Printer's Devil Review, Mount Hope, Thrice Fiction, Lalitamba Journal, and other fine magazines.

Eastlit Journal

Red Savina Review


"A bit of fragrance always clings to the hand that gives you roses."
—Chinese proverb

  • Trade Paperback: 291 pages / $13.99 / 8.5 x 0.75 x 5.5 inches / ISBN: 978-0-9904331-1-8
  • Genre: Literary, Multicultural Fiction
  • Publisher: Underground Voices (November 21, 2014)

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  • Hardcover: 368 pages / $25.95 / 8.5 x 1.3 x 5.5 inches / ISBN: 9780930773885
  • Genre: Literary, Multicultural Fiction
  • Publisher: Black Heron Press (June 15, 2012)

“An auspicious debut by Vietnam-born Khanh Ha.”—Alan Caruba, National Book Critics Circle

“Dark, violent, and poetic saga . . .”Publishers Weekly

“Almost dreamlike . . .” Seattle Post Intelligencer

“A great poetic talent . . .” Fighting Monkey Press

“A love story imbued with urgency and atonement and suffused with a dream-like quality.”Elohi Gadugi Journal

“Readers who enjoy epic sagas set in faraway lands will find absorbing satisfaction here.”Library Journal

Flesh is a different kind of story, a powerful yet beautifully written, dark, dystopian fiction.”Flashlight Commentary

“If you are looking for a book this year for your bookclub, consider Flesh by Khanh Ha.”A Book Lover's Library

“It is the kind of the book that rests on the border between entertainment and art.”A Daydreamer's Thoughts

“A lyrical masterpiece by a debut author. . . . A work that reads like a song, imagery is beautiful in this novel, and will have you picturing this world long after you put the book down.”Seize the Moment

“It is my honor to have been able to review this book by Mr. Khanh Hà, the first book of his that I hope is one of many to come. I cannot encourage you enough to read it, and savor all the morsels, and gather every scent that rise up from every page.”—Paula Tohline Calhoun (from The Scents of Memory)

“It's as good as award-winning literary fiction such as The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini, Atonement by Ian McEwan, and Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden. Such comparisons come because they all deal with social issues; the novel is propelled by characters and not strictly a plot, emotional ties are made by the reader, and they are poignant, original and haunting as far as thinking of humanity.”Oh, for the HOOK of a BOOK!

Flesh by Khanh Ha is dark and dreamlike . . . a stunning debut novel that showcases the writer's ability to become a young male narrator whose view of the world has been tainted by his life circumstances and tragedy, but who has the wherewithal to overcome and become a better man.”—Serena Agusto-Cox, Savvy Verse & Wit

“Dark and descriptive, this is not a book for the faint of heart. The opening chapter about a young boy watching the beheading of his father in all the bloody detail is shocking to say the least, but like a movie we can't stop watching regardless of its gore. . . . This book just grips us viscerally from those first pages.”A Bookish Libraria

“I recall a book about a man trying to get home. . . . Since I read this book I've told many a fellow reader about this literary gem. . . . Again, almost universally, when I saw them soon after they too had nothing but praise for the book, Cold Mountain by Charles Frazier. Flesh by Khanh Ha is this type of book.”—Sean Keefer, author of The Trust

“These beautiful, tragic stories are woven into a lyrically beautiful, vibrantly descriptive book. . . . Khanh Ha is also a master of using descriptive detail to create a mood. This mood often radiates darkness and death, but it sometimes reflects joy.”On Page and Screen

“A lush, poetic tale, Flesh takes readers on a journey far beneath the surface of a land most have only glimpsed superficially in clichéd Hollywood films.”Book Reviews by Elizabeth White

“The prose often has the cadences and imagery of poetry and shifts between scenes having the surreal quality of dreams and those with fast-paced action. . . . This story grips and won't let go even after the last page is turned.”JoyStory

Flesh is a story of shades and contrasts, languid but intense, darkly detailed and quietly introspective, poverty and cruelty, love and sensuality. . . . Khanh Ha's writing is so visceral you aren't just visiting Vietnam, you're immersed in the experience which is both beautiful and confronting.”The Eclectic Reader

“The best feature of this book is the author's style of writing. . . . There's a certain charm in it that's more at home with what we call 'classics' and hard to come by in modern literature.”Book Reviews by DDS

“Ha is a master at detailed descriptions to the point that you can see it happening the way the author intended you to.”—Ruth Hill, My Devotional Thoughts

“Reading this book is sometimes like flipping through a stack of postcards of old Annam. Ha fills his novel with beautiful surroundings, sights, sounds and even smells, inviting his readers to take a step back to another time and another place.”—Nancy Oakes, The Year in Books

“As I read Flesh, Khanh Ha's debut novel, it seemed to me that the story is almost dreamlike. . . . The journey throughout the book, whether through light or darkness, is fascinating, violent, and even heartbreaking.”—Man of La Book, Seattle Post Intelligencer