Monday, April 16, 2007

New books April 2007

My Life: Chronicles of a wartime pilot and other stories (an authobiography) by Lim Kean Chong (RM 38.00)

The story of his [Lim Kean Chong] life, as a young and intrepid RAAF bomber pilot in World War II, operating in raids over Germany and Europe, his subsequent experiences working in China during the Cultural Revolution, and later in an African country - Tanzania - should make interested reading for those of us who have had no experiences of those parts. But it was not a life without its disappointments and frustrations. Nor is it a story devoid of pathos, when for instance, on returning to Australia after demobilization to rejoin Melbourne University as a second year student, he was asked by Immigration to register as an alien student, a victim of the White Australian policy. These are memories poignant in the telling thereof.

- Preface by PG Lim -

Song at Twilight
by Chan King Nui (RM 20.00)

From living in Hong Kong as a child, to living in Siam and also in the Big House in Kuala Lumpur, the author shares her rich life experiences which will inspire many who read this book. The book continues with her pursuit of education and the interruption due to the Second World War when she lived in India.

Her experience as a teacher and meeting many people who later become important leaders in the political and corporate world is an interesting read. The author traveled to many parts of the world, learnt many types of art and craft, went through some very painful experiences and finally found God in her life.

The Encyclopedia of Malaysia, Volume 13: The Economy edited by Prof Dr H Osman Rani (RM 95.00)

This volume provides an in-depth insight into the dramatic transformation of Malaysia from an agrarian economy at Independence in 1957 into a diverse and triving manufacturing- service based economy in 2006.

The volume begins with an overview of Malaysia's economic history, covering the evolution of economic policies from post-Independence to 1970, the formulation of the New Econmic Policy (1971-90), the balanced growth thrusts of the 1990s and finally the shift towards a knowledge-based economy in the 21st century.

An extensive analysis of the various sectors of the economy follows. The rapid growth and modernization of the Malaysian economy is documented, beginning with the natural resources and agricultural sectors and moving into the manufacturing sectors. The services and financial sectors are then explored, focusing on the development of key sub-sectors.

The volume proceeds with a discussion of the infrastructure which supports Malaysia's economy, and the stable social framework that sustains its human resources.

The volume concludes by examining the macroeconomic policies implemented by various governmental bodies and agencies, and Malaysia's position in the rapidly globalizing world economy.

Monday, April 02, 2007

People, politics and poetry

I am Muslim by Dina Zaman

I am Muslim is a selfish journey of faith. Dina meets shamans, nationalists, moderates and gets into all sorts of scrapes, to discover what it means to be Muslim in Malaysia. Heartbreaking, angry and downright funny.

A Noor. I am Muslim is Dina Zaman's first work of non-fiction.She has written for the media since 1994. Her first column, Dina's Dalca was published in the New Straits Times and she has had her share of brickbats. Her works of fiction and poetry have been published locally and abroad.

Dina Zaman's articles about being Muslim in Malaysia today captures the multifaceted aspects of difference and alterity in normative religios life better than many academic studies ...Dr Farish

Tanah Tujuh: Close Encounters with the Temuan Mythos
by Antares

Tanah Tujuh is what a large number of Orang Asli tribes call our planet. Tanah Tujuh: Close Encounters with the Temuan Mythos chronicles Antares' initiation into a fast vanishing aboriginal cosmo-mythology that offers an alternative view of reality. Copiously illustrated with sketches and photographs, foreword by eminent anthropologist, Robert Knox Dentan.

Antares is a writer musician and visionary who moved out of the city in 1992 and found himself living amngst the Temuan (the second largest of the peninsular Orang Asli tribes) in the rainforest.

Adam's Dream by Salleh ben Joned

This is Salleh ben Joned's first book of poems since Sajak Sajak Saleh (or Poems Sacred and Profane) and it is entirely in English. Salleh says in his forward that, although English is not his first language - he only learned it in his teens - he has two main reasons for writing in English. Firstly, he thinks that a big majority of his readers seem to be non-Malays, and, secondly, "My satires in Malay, the use of humour, parody, irony ... puns ... and othr forms of word-play seem to have been taken wrongly by most of the Malay readers."

Adam's Dream is an intensely personal collection of poems, to make you laugh out loud or cry or to ponder over.

Salleh ben Joned was born in Melaka. He spent many years Down Under where he became a student of leading Australian poet James McAuley. His first collection of bilingual poetry, Sajak-Sajak Saleh (Teks) was published in 1987. [A second enlarged version was published by Pustaka Cipta in 2002.] It was followed by A book of essays, As I Please (Skoob, 1994) and Nothing is Sacred (Maya Press, 2003).

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