Blurbs and Reviews


“The search for traces of Ouk Ket in the wasteland of Khmer Rouge history and 2009 Phnom Penh makes an absorbing story, and the narrative is bolstered by Carmichael’s clear-eyed account of Duch’s trial (including Martine and Neary’s searing testimony) and by his astute reflections on memory, belated international justice and the Khmer Rouge era. Crisply written, elegantly constructed and thoroughly researched, When Clouds Fell from the Sky is a perceptive, often heart-breaking book.”

− David Chandler, author of Voices from S-21: Terror and History in Pol Pot’s Secret Prison

“This is both the poignant story of a young woman seeking the truth about her father’s disappearance at the hands of the Khmer Rouge regime, and an unflinching portrait of the executioner who oversaw the torture chamber where he was imprisoned. An unforgettable book.”

− Elizabeth Becker, author of When the War Was Over: Cambodia and The Khmer Rouge Revolution

“A beautifully written book that does a masterful job weaving the history of the Khmer Rouge tribunal with a more personal story of human tragedy and redemption. This extremely thoughtful work is the product of its author’s deep understanding of Cambodia. Anyone trying to make sense of the Khmer Rouge war crimes court should read this timely book.”

Peter Maguire, author of Law and War, Facing Death in Cambodia and Thai Stick


“Combining extensive historical research and analysis with colourful narrative, When Clouds Fell From the Sky is arguably the most vivid and terrifying literary portrait of the prison to date.”

Bennett Murray, Phnom Penh Post

“Carmichael writes intelligently about a complicated subject that continues to haunt the survivors, be they Cambodians or anybody else from the myriad of foreign powers that dabbled in this country’s tragic history.”

Luke Hunt, The Diplomat

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