Sunday, November 23, 2008

Good Reads

Shopping for Christmas gifts? Here are a couple of books which have caught my attention lately:

Book Choice 1: "Evening is the Whole Day" by Preeta Samarsan.

Preeta paints a vivid picture of the complexities of a successful Indian immigrant family in Malaysia. It's a story of "being educated and wealthy but of low social status" - one that would resonate much with a large section of the local population. Incidentally, the book has catapulted Ipoh born Preeta to the same status as Arundhati Roy and Kiran Desai.

Need a review on the book? Read the one by Washington based writer Sadanand Dhumme here.

Want some feedback? Go here to get some very frank discussions on the book and the issues it raises.

Book Choice 2: "Where Monsoons Meet" by Musimgrafik.

Here's a refreshing take on the history of Malaya from the days of the Malacca Sultanate to independence in 1957. It's touted as a "People's History of Malaysia". The book was conceived at the height of the student activism in the midst 1970's by a group of people who chose only to be known as "Grassroots." In a time when we are trying more than ever to define "Malaysian identity", Where Monsoons Meet tells us that we cannot ignore our historical roots, whoever we are, wherever we come from.

Where Monsoons Meet can be bought at Popular bookstores nationwide or ordered by mail from Kinibooks. Price:RM18.00