Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Meet-the-Author: Kee Thuan Chye

There will be a Meet-the-Author session with Kee Thuan Chye on Sunday, 10 June 2012 at 2pm, at our new bookstore at 51 Armenian Street.         

Kee Thuan Chye
is a prominent Malaysian actor, dramatist, poet and journalist.  He has acted in theatre, films, and on television for more than 30 years, and continues to do so.  In 1981, Kee co-founded the theatre group, KAMI, in Kuala Lumpur.  A noted civil rights activist, Kee was among the first recipients of The Annexe Heroes Freedom of Expression Awards when it was launched in 2008.  Kee Thuan Chye has been a judge and regional chairperson of the prestigious Commonwealth Writers Prize.

His recently published book, No More Bullshit, Please, We're All Malaysians, is a bestseller in Malaysia.  His earlier books include March 8: Time for Real Change, March 8: The Day Malaysia Woke Up and 1984 Here and Now.

Sunday, 10 June 2012, 2:00pm - 3:00pm

Select Books
51 Armenian Street
Singapore 179939

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Children's Ebooks: Time Talisman Series

A series of children's ebooks published by our children's books imprint, Autumn Wonders, is now available for purchase and download at, the new ebookstore by MediaCorp.
Written by talented mulit-talented Singaporean writer Don Bosco, the Time Talisman series is for readers aged 8 to 14.  It takes young readers into an alternative history of Singapore, to explore a magical colonial city where alchemists struggle for power and young kids lead the battle against evil.

It all starts in present-day Singapore, when young Justin Low and his good friends Emily Anson and Roz Hamid come across a mysterious talisman. Time and again, against their wishes, the kids are transported back to Singapore's wild colonial past. They have their hands full as they battle a whole gallery of dangerous villains, including ambitious alchemists, ruthless sorcerers and power-hungry conspiracy groups. Even in the most unlikely places, they manage to find helpful allies, from righteous warriors and eccentric mystics to creative artists who are willing to risk their lives to protect their communities from the forces of evil.

There are currently two books in the series - The Secret of Monk's Hill and Newton's Curse - with more on the way.
Don maintains a very cool and helpful (for both budding young writers and parents) website called SuperCoolBooks.  Check it out for more information about the series, his other works and innovative downloadable content.

The Time Talisman series is also available on Kindle, iTunes, Kobo and other ebookstores.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Asian Art titles from Selections 107

Selections 107, the latest issue of our bi-monthly catalogues of new titles has been released.  These are some Asian Art titles from the catalogue:

Images of my Pottery Travels by Iskandar Jalil. This volume will be a permanent recognition of the oeuvre and ideas of Singapore's leading potter Iskader Jalil (b. 1940). In it, Iskandar Jalil's notebooks, personal recollections, and the illustrations show his ways of work and the thinking which lies behind the clay pots for which he is so well known. The volume ends with illustrations and notes about his collection of 14 seals, some of which mark each of his creations. With glossary and many high quality illustrations.

Eko (Space) Nugroxo edited by Adeline Ooi, and Beverly Yong. Eko Nugroho (b. 1977) is one of Indonesia's hottest rising stars. He is a member of the artistic and intellectual community that centres on the vibrant central Java city of Yogyakarta in Indonesia. Working across media, form and presentation, Eko's works often forces an interface between high art and street and popular culture. He works in diverse media, creating paintings, murals, videos, handmade zines with collage and drawings, and also collaborates with local machinists to produce beautiful embroideries. Eko has participated in numerous international shows. This is his first monograph, and documents the artist's career from the early 2000s up till 2011. Includes an in-depth interview by Enin Supriyanto with the artist.

The Collectors Show: Chimera - Asian Contemporary Art from Private Collections. The Collectors Show brings together notable works of Asian contemporary art from private collections around the world. A tribute to the art patrons of today, the exhibition offers an insight into the breadth and remarkable richness of private art collections, and the unique and highly personal visions and passions that shape them. This edition of The Collectors Show is titled Chimera, a deliberately evocative word that references both the mythological hybrid monster and the idea of an illusion, fantasy, or delusion. The exhibition presents contemporary art in all its various and hybrid forms, from painting to sculpture, to new media and interactive multi-media. The works selected eschew conventional spectacle in favour of a reflection on vision and visuality, offering visually seductive surfaces tinged with undercurrents of anxiety. These artworks remind us of the spectres of our age - questions and issues that continue to haunt us and test our judgement at every turn and corner of our new millennium.

Sanyu: Catalogue Raisonné Oil Paintings: Volume One by Rita Wong. Sanyu (b Shun-Ching, Sichuan Province, China, 1900; d Paris, 1966) began his studies in Shanghai and also spent two years in Japan. In 1921, he received a grant from the Chinese Government to travel to Paris where he became a student at the Académie de la Grande Chaumière. Sanyu began to exhibit his work at the Paris salons and garnered a modest popularity in Europe as well as in New York. Integrating traditional Chinese aesthetics with Western modernist tenets, Sanyu has created a unique painterly language that is all his own. Dedicated to discovering as much as possible about Sanyu, the author has spent over a decade interviewing Sanyu's friends and gathering records pertaining to Sanyu's life. In addition to listing all of Sanyu's known oil paintings, this catalogue raisonne attempts to reconstruct Sanyu's life in the form of an extended chronology.

Mongolian Buddhist Art: Masterpieces from the Museums of Mongolia - Vol.1. Thangkas, Appliques and Embroideries Part 1 and 2 edited by Zara Fleming and J. Lkhagvademchiq Shastri. Mongolian Buddhist Art: Masterpieces from the Museums of Mongolia presents for the first time 441 masterpieces of Mongolian Buddhist art from five major Mongolian museums: the Bogd Kahn Palace Museum, the Choijin Lama Temple Museum, the Zanabazar Museum of Fine Arts, the Erdene Zuu Museum and the Danzanravjaa Museum. Selected by the Centre for Cultural Heritage in conjunction with the curators of the participating museums, these pieces were chosen for their religious and historical importance, their aesthetic and technical quality, their uniquely Mongolian characteristics and their rarity. Volume 1: Thangkas, Appliqués and Embroideries is divided into eight chapters - encompassing within these three media the visual realms of the Buddhas and his disciples, mahasiddhas, Indian, Tibetan, and Mongolian scholars, previous reincarnations, yidams, dakinis, protectors and sacred architecture. Although constrained by the rules of Buddhist iconography and strongly influenced by Tibetan art, the Mongolians have succeeded in creating many works that are uniquely Mongolian, a highly expressive and vibrant tradition that can be seen in this volume. Dating from the late 17th to the 20th century, these examples provide rich materials for the present and future studies of Buddhist art and its heritage in Mongolia. This very substantial volume is itself divided into two separate parts and sold in a slip case.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Select Books Weekend Sale

We are planning a pre-opening sale for our new bookstore at Armenian Street later this month as we need room for new titles coming in. 

We're doing a "trial run" this weekend to check that all systems are running smoothly. 

Renovations are still ongoing, the cafe is barely ready and the exhibition displays are not up, but there'll be a selection of titles available at 50% to 80% off.

So, do drop by to check out our new bookstore!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Books on Japanese Occupation in World War II

This is a selection of books that includes references to life under the Japanese Occupation during World War II:

Red Star over Malaya: Resistance and Social Conflict During and After the Japanese by Cheah Boon Kheng. Red Star Over Malaya is an account of the inter-racial conflicts between Malays and Chinese during the final stages and the aftermath of the Japanese occupation. As Japanese forces retreated into the big cities, the Chinese guerrillas of the communist-led resistance movement, the Malayan People's Anti-Japanese Army (MPAJA), emerged from the jungle and took control of some 70 per cent of the country's smaller towns and villages. The ensuing conflict involving the Malayan Communist Party, the Malay population, and the British Military Administration marked a crucial stage in the history of Malaya. Based on extensive archival research in Malaysia, Great Britain, Japan and the United States, Red Star Over Malaya provides a riveting account of the way the Japanese occupation reshaped colonial Malaya, and of the tension-filled months that followed surrender. This book is fundamental to an understanding of social and political developments in Malaysia during the second half of the 20th century.

The Japanese Wartime Empire, 1931-1945 edited by Peter Duus; Ramon H. Myers and M. R. Peattie. This is Volume 3 of a 3-volume series on modern Japanese colonialism and imperialism by Japanese and international specialists. Part 1 explores aspects of Japan's wartime empire and the formal colonies of Korea and Japan. The 4 essays in Part 2 deal with Northeast Asia including the cultural construction of Manchukuo, the management of Manchuria, and the economic integration policies for Japan, Manchuria and North China. Part 3 looks at the Southward Advance of 1936-41, Thailand's role, and the Occupation Elites in Southeast Asia after 1941. The final section has reflective studies on Comfort Women, the Post-War Legacy and a comparative study of the Japanese and German Empires of WWII. With black-and-white photographs and index.

That's How It Goes: The Way of the 90-Year Life Journey of a Singapore Eurasian by F.A.C. “Jock” Oehlers. In this engrossing and heartwarming autobiography, Jock Oehlers brings readers with him on his life's journey, from a carefree young boy growing up in Colonial Singapore, through the terror and hardship of the Japanese Occupation, to becoming a respected Professor of Oral Surgery and successful oral surgeon in modern-day Singapore. His recollections are a timely reminder that an honest, decent and kind man can have a successful and happy life and be a valued member of the community. This is a moving and inspiring account of the life of a Singapore Eurasian. This second edition includes additional details as well as a complete Part II covering his life in Australia after he emigrated there. Includes an attached CD featuring his song "That's How It Goes" performed by his grandson Jamie Oehlers, an internationally known and award-winning jazz performer.

The Japanese Occupation of Borneo, 1941-1945 by Ooi Keat Gin. The Japanese occupation of both British Borneo - Brunei, Sarawak and North Borneo - and Dutch Borneo in 1941 to 1945 is a much understudied subject. Of particular interest is the occupation of Dutch Borneo, governed by the Imperial Japanese Navy that had long-term plans for 'permanent possession'. This book surveys Borneo under Western colonialism, examines pre-war Japanese interests in Borneo, and analyses the Japanese military invasion and occupation. It goes on to consider the nature of Japanese rule in Borneo, contrasting the different regimes of the Imperial Japanese Army, which ruled the north, and the Navy. A wide range of issues are discussed, including the incorporation of the economy in the Greater East Asia Co-prosperity Sphere and the effects of this on Borneo's economy. The book also covers issues such as the relationship with the various indigenous inhabitants, with Islam and the Muslim community, and the Chinese, as well as topics of acculturation and propaganda, and major uprisings and mass executions. It examines the impact of the wartime conditions and policies on the local multiethnic peoples and their responses, providing an invaluable contribution to the greater understanding of the significance of the wartime Japanese occupation in the historical development of Borneo.

Historical Sabah: The War by Danny Wong Tze Ken. This carefully documented account of WWII and the Japanese Occupation in Sabah draws on all accessible records and archival material. The volume recounts: Japanese and anti-Japanese activities in Sabah 1937-41; the history of the North Borneo Volunteer Force 1938-42; the advent and course of the Occupation 1942-45, including the imposition of $50 million Blood Money; the tragedy of Allied POWs and the gallantry of Sabahans who helped them; the Uprisings of 1943 and 1945; the Death Marches of 1945; the Z Force and other guerrilla activities; the Sandakan massacres at the end of the War; a Japanese woman's memoir of life in Sabah; and the establishment of the Petagas War Memorial. With black-and-white photographs, listings of primary and secondary source material, and index.