The story technique differ from many other novels with biographical elements. It is not written in chronological order, but takes leaps in time. The novel is consisting of many short sentences, mixed with longer ones.
It’s a dense book. The prose is spare and often objective, something that is appreciated by some, and not by others. It is difficult to really know the characters when not getting into their heads. The book is beautifully written, but leaves much for the reader to comprehend and read between the lines. Indochina was a part of the French Colonial Empire, and the girl and the man can be interpreted as symbols of power and the occupied. It’s an interesting book that takes time to digest.