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Table of Contents

  • List of Illustrations
  • Preface
  • Complete Cast of Characters
  • Introduction
  • Part 1. Year Zero
  • 1. The Diplomat and the Deportee
  • 2. "It Was a Massacre"
  • 3. The Mother
  • 4. The Murderer
  • 5. Sithy and Sithea
  • 6. "It's Not What You Think"
  • 7. The Wife without a Husband
  • 8. Stealing from the Dead
  • Part 2. Limbo
  • 9. The Father
  • 10. An Education in Silence
  • 11. A Second Chance
  • 12. The Medicine Man
  • 13. Expired
  • 14. "Not Home for the Holidays"
  • 15. Never-Ending Nightmare
  • Part 3. Year of the Monkey
  • 16. Two Cities Tangled Together
  • 17. New Year, Same Past
  • 18. Girlfriends
  • 19. A Party at Oak Park
  • 20. Judgment Day
  • Part 4. Years to Come
  • 21. Blood-Killer
  • 22. The Pastor
  • 23. Friends and Family
  • 24. Exile
  • 25. Left Behind
  • Afterword
  • Acknowledgments
  • Appendix
  • Sources
  • Index

About the Author

Katya Cengel is a freelance writer based in San Luis Obispo, California, and lectures in the Journalism Department of California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo. She was a features and news writer for the Louisville Courier-Journal from 2003 to 2011 and has reported from North and Central America, Europe, Asia, and Africa. Her work has appeared in New York Times Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, the Washington Post, Marie Claire, and Newsweek. She is the author of Bluegrass Baseball: A Year in the Minor League Life (Nebraska, 2012).


A powerful and timely book on the generational impact of a particularly brutal chapter of the twentieth century-the Cambodian genocide of the 1970s. Exiled moves seamlessly from the killing fields of Cambodia to American immigrant communities, adding texture and perspective to the current debate on refugees, political asylum, cultural assimilation, and the deportation of Americanized immigrant criminals. Cengel humanizes this debate, bringing a deeper understanding of these hot-button issues. I strongly recommend this book."" - Melvin Claxton, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist

""Exiled comes at the right moment in our national debate about immigration and deportation. Katya Cengel's painfully detailed story about the maltreatment of the children of refugees we once welcomed should open our minds and hearts to the tyranny of ill-conceived laws and small-minded bureaucrats."" - Elizabeth Becker, author of When the War Was Over: Cambodia and the Khmer Rouge Revolution

""An excellent and compelling account of Cambodian refugees' plight in the United States. . . . Once you read Exiled, you can't help but be empathetic and look at deportation through a new lens."" - Jennifer Lau, author of Beautiful Hero: How We Survived the Khmer Rouge

""A multigenerational saga of violence and resurrection that plays out among several Cambodian-Americans families. . . . Katya Cengel movingly documents how trauma plays out across multiple generations, showing how the unresolved conflicts of the elders lead to catastrophic addiction and mental illness among the young. Cengel captures the full scale of this tragedy and writes with such compassion that anybody who picks up this book cannot fail to be moved."" - Helen Thorpe, author of The Newcomers: Finding Refuge, Friendship, and Hope in an American Classroom

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