Either the Beginning or the End of the World

Carolrhoda Lab

My grandmother’s eyes observe, seem to say,
“There’s no end of things love can call for.”

A bittersweet love story about a Cambodian-American daughter drawn into a love affair with a young army medic returned from Afghanistan and into her own Cambodian heritage.


Either the Beginning or the End of the World “…examines the intersections of love and war in a family’s history.”

"A narrative where love is as strong and complex as the many forces that work against it.”
Recommended, The Bulletin for the Center of Children’s Books

“By learning the intricacies of human suffering, Sofie undergoes an empathetic awakening.”
The Horn Book

“Terry Farish’s stories about refugees and immigrants have been informed by her extensive work with the Red Cross in Vietnam, and you can feel that raw, authentic care given to her characters in Either the Beginning or the End of the World. It’s a love story, but it’s also a story of generations of a family, each affected by war and loss in their own ways.”

“I found that this story reminded me a lot of Taylor Swift’s song “'Mine'."

“Terry Farish has again written another haunting fast-paced book about love, cultural diversity, PTSD and understanding.” Rating: Excellent, Maine State Library Reviews