The Happiest Refugee incites joy, laughter… and hope for cancer patients

“I want to give you 1% of the retail sale price of every book sold,” Anh Do wrote in a letter to the Australian Cancer Research Foundation (ACRF) in July 2010 – just 2 months before the book in question, The Happiest Refugee, would take the Australian book industry by storm.

He anticipated that the funds raised for cancer research would be anywhere between $300 and $30,000: “Even more,” he wrote, “if the book goes well.”

… A humble understatement in hindsight, as last night The Happiest Refugee made headlines yet again when it won ‘Book of the Year’, ‘Newcomer of the Year’ and ‘Biography of the Year’ (joint winner with Musician Paul Kelly’s How to Make Gravy) at the Australian Book Industry Awards in Melbourne.

With the book’s recent success, and talk of a film offer by Russell Crowe, ACRF is thrilled to be able to translate Anh’s continuing success into hope for cancer patients of the future.

“At the time that Mr Do made this generous offer, none of us could have anticipated the success of this wonderful biography, or its incredible impact on so many Australian lives,” said ACRF Chief Executive, David Brettell.

“Not only has Mr Do brought joy to thousands of people though his story, but he has given back to the community by donating 1% of the retail price of every book sold in the country to the ACRF.

“We thank him very much for the impact he is making on our ability to continue funding truely world-class cancer research in Australia.”