The more you know about a country before you visit, the more you'll enjoy it. And if you don't have time to read before you leave, bringing a couple of books along will help to satisfy your curiosity while you're there! The following are a few great books on Vietnam:

Vietnam Guide Books:

Lonely Planet Vietnam Guidebook

Lonely Planet Vietnam:
Classic guide book with lots of information. Geared more toward younger travelers.

Frommers Vietnam Guidebook

Frommer's Vietnam:
Plenty of pictures, and includes a section on Angkor Wat.

Rough Guide Vietnam

Rough Guide Vietnam:
A great guide for independant travel. Lots of information on sites and trips, but a little less on hotels than the Lonely Planet.

National Geographic Guidebook

National Geographic Vietnam:
Plenty of excellent pictures and information on the major sites.

Biographical & Autobiographical:

The House on Dream Street

The House on Dream Street:
A great book on the experience of living in Hanoi in the 1990's.

The Sacred Willow

The Sacred Willow:
Four Generations in the Life of a Vietnamese Family - Another excellent book covering 130 years of one family's history.

The Tapestries

The Tapestries:
An outstanding novel based on an autobiography of a boy/man between 1916 and 1932.

Vietnam Now

Vietnam Now:
A war reporter goes back to Vietnam to re-discover the country and what it is today...another great book.

Vietnamese Cooking:

Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table

Pleasures of the Vietnamese Table

Hot, Sour, Salty, Sweet

Hot, Sour, Salty, Sweet

Vietnamese Cooking Made Easy

Vietnamese Cooking Made Easy

Authentic Recipes From Vietnam

Authentic Recipes From Vietnam

Vietnam War and History Books:

The History of Vietnam

The History of Vietnam:
The complete history of Vietnam from the 2nd Century BC to the present.


An outstanding book with accounts of the Vietnam War from all sides. This is a must read for anyone!

No Peace, No Honor

No Peace, No Honor:
A very interesting book based on recently declassified American and Vietnamese documents regarding the Vietnam War and negotiations with Nixon and Kissinger.

Illustrated Hisotry of Vietnam

An Illustrated History:
A very good illustrated history book on Vietnam going up until Doi Moi.