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Monday 31 August 2020

New Arrivals at The Penang Bookshelf in July and August 2020

New Arrivals at The Penang Bookshelf


July and August 2020

(Last Updated 31-8-20)

  • Each book advertised below includes a brief description of its contents and condition as well as the price in Malaysian Ringgit. If you want a fuller description of a used book's condition, to look at the scanned contents page, if any, and/or to find out the price in USD, please click on the link in blue for the relevant book. 
  • If you click on a link after the current month and find nothing, the book's been sold.  
  • Of course, if you want to buy anything you see here, you can either do so from the site or contact me at 
  • This page will be updated constantly until the end of the month.
  • The prices shown here hold good for at least this month, but for out of print books, the prices may change in subsequent months.
  • All prices include free postage to anywhere in Malaysia and to Singapore.

Malaysia & Singapore - Anthropology & Sociology

This work publishes the Malaysian results of an ASEAN five nation study of fertility patterns amongst different ethnicities in each country. The study also looks at how socioeconomic activities, place of residence and 'exposure to modernity' affect fertility patterns in the country. Good Hardback. First Edition 146 pages with figures tables and a bibliography.

This book is the result of a 14 year study of the lives of women in one kampung, Rusila in Terengganu. The author seeks to determine the extent to which development does or does not affect women's attempts to gain equality. Besides looking at life in the village, Strange includes in her study the effects of change in the wider district and the country as a whole. Good Hardback. First Edition. 265 pages with tables, figures, a bibliography and an index.

Malaysia & Singapore - Architecture

This book was published by the Malaysian Institute of Architects to commemorate its 80th anniversary. Besides photographs of traditional and new buildings from all over the country, the book contains a selection of reflective essays. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 176 pages. For further details please see the scanned contents page

Roughly 65% of energy consumption in Malaysia comes from running cooling appliances. This book sets out how this can be changed by, surprisingly, altering and designing airtight houses with carefully controlled fresh air ventilation. The design is based on a similar one imported from Germany, but cleverly adapted to a tropical climate. 138 pages with many illustrations, figures, a bibliography and an index. New Paperback. First Edition

An interesting survey by an Egyptian architect of how mosques have developed in Malaysia from independence onwards. Besides general commentary of stylistic trends, the work focuses on twelve particular buildings from different parts of the country. New Paperback. First Edition. 276 pages with many colour photographs, some plans, a glossary, a list of references and an index.

Malaysia & Singapore - Arts & Crafts

An exhibition catalogue in Bahasa Malaysia and English mainly highlighting various forms of wood carving of the Jah Hut and Mah Meri peoples of peninsular Malaysia with an introduction by Anthony Ratos. There is also a small section on Sarawak sculpture.  Very Good Brochure 14 pages with several black and white photographs

New. This boxed set contains all four of the author's well known and trusted guides on the crafts of the Straits Chinese, the descendants of intermarriages between early Chinese settlers in Malaya and their host community. Many in the community established prospering businesses which enabled them to display their wealth through the comissioning and purchase of artefacts that blended many styles. The four Collectors' Guides included in this boxed set are - Beadwork and Embroidery - Furniture - Porcelain and Silver.  New Paperback in a Slip Case. Reprints 

This book showcases the rich collection of jewellery of the owner of the Pinang Peranakan Mansion, a museum dedicated to the culture of the descendants of Chinese immigrants who married Malays and settled in the Malay archipelago from 200 BC onwards. Being of mixed race themselves, they tended to be more open than others to the cultural influences that swirled around them. So the  jewellery and culture described here exhibits traces of Chinese, Malay and European influences. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket First Edition 168 pages

Malaysia & Singapore - Biography & Memoirs

An autobiography of a Sarawak policeman who experienced the Communist insurgency in his home state and then retired to go into legal practice. The book is full of anecdotes about the vagaries of police work. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 575 pages. 

A young Englishman sets out on his first tour of duty as a rubber planter in an isolated rubber estate in near Kuantan, Pahang. As he says, only "the madness of empire" could have entrusted a twenty year old boy with no real life experience with such responsibility. As Thorp's witty account demonstrates, somehow he managed to muddle through. 221 pages. New Paperback. First Edition 

Thomson was first a private surveyor in Malaya for three years and then a Government surveyor in Singapore for a further twelve years until 1853. This book, originally published in 1864, is his account of his adventures while in Malaya, where he was often the only non-official European and was able to form strong friendships in the Malay community. This involvement made him often more sympathetic than his fellow countrymen to the plight of Malays trying to come to terms with the new British presence. Very Good Paperback. Reprint. 332 pages. 

Now known as SMK Perempuan Pudu, Pudu English School, Kuala Lumpur, was one of the earliest schools in the English medium for girls in Malaya. Josephine Foss, a level headed experienced missionary teacher, was head mistress there for nearly two decades before being taken prisoner by the Japanese in World War II and helped set the school on the map. Gullick, a prolific historian of British Malaya, here tells her inspiring story from childhood to retirement.  Very Good Paperback 198 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details

A collection of reminiscences from the author's boyhood as the son of a Royal Navy serviceman in Singapore and Malaya in the 1960s. One of the remarkable features of the book is that he has managed to assemble a fair collection of photographs of expatriate family life, street scenes and advertisements as well as reminiscences of other contemporaries to flesh out a comprehensive picture of an impressionable period in his life. New Paperback. First Edition. Signed by the Author 194 pages. 

A collection of reminiscences from the author's boyhood as the son of a Royal Navy serviceman in Singapore and Malaya in the 1960s. One of the remarkable features of the book is that he has managed to assemble a fair collection of photographs of expatriate family life, street scenes and advertisements as well as reminiscences of other contemporaries to flesh out a comprehensive picture of an impressionable period in his life. New Paperback. First Edition. 190 pages. 

Peet arrived as a junior reporter for the Straits Times in Singapore four years after the end of World War I and retired, as editor of the paper, in 1952. In this book he avoids memoirs, but instead concentrates on memories of what Singapore was like before the Japanese occupation. Until that cataclysmic event, he did not think the city had changed all that much since the late 19th century. 226 pages. . New Paperback Reprint  

With the help of his subject and Tan's family and business associates, the author has produced an account of the philosophy and activities one of Singapore and Malaysia's best known businessmen and philanthropists. Besides founding The Oversea-Chinese Banking Corporation, Tan played a significant role in at least a dozen other companies. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. First Edition 252 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

A pictorial biography of independent Malaya's first prime minister until shortly before his death. Sheppard wrote the text and compiled the photographs with the assistance of his subject.  Very Good Hardbacks. Revised Editions. 166 and 156 pages.


This is the British colonial government's report on its activities in the state shortly after taking over from the Brooke family. As one might expect, the report generally records progress on various fronts. The one blemish, the assassination of the new Governor, DG Stewart, in Sibu, is glossed over in a couple of sentences. Although at the report records the crime as a protest against the end of Brooke family rule, later documents have indicated that the assassins were agitating for unification of Sarawak with the newly formed neighbouring state of Indonesia. Good Hardback. First Edition. 115 pages with about two dozen black and white photographs and a large fold out map. For further details please see the scanned contents page.

It is a little known fact that Sarawak can lay claim to having Malaysia's 'oldest legislature,' although until Sarawak joined the Malaysian state in 1963, it was, for most of its history, more of a consultative body for the Brooke Rajahs and the British administration that took over at the end of World War II. This book seeks to trace the Council Negri from its time as the Majlis Umum, set up by the Brookes in 1867, to the time of publication. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 274 pages with some black and white and colour photographs, graphs and tables. For further details please see the scanned contents page.

In the published  history of the Second World War in what is now Malaysia, the events on the island of Borneo, are barely covered. If the island is mentioned, it is usually in published memoirs of expatriates telling of incarceration or battle. This two volume work goes a long way to fill that gap, giving a more comprehensive picture of living with the Japanese from their landings in Miri in December 1941 until their surrender nearly four years later. The events of this period are related through documents of those who experienced them. New Paperbacks First Edition 721 pages in two volumes with a few black and white plates, maps and indices.

In this fascinating book of record the author has drawn together research on forty-six distinct languages mainly spoken in Northern Borneo, but also in neighbouring in parts of Sarawak, Kalimantan Utara and Brunei so as to document these languages, many of which are in danger of dying out. Besides personal and demonstrative pronouns and case markers  he also includes 596 entries for each of these languages. It is thus one of the most comprehensive language surveys of Sabah published to date. New Paperback. First Edition. 274 pages with maps and figures.

This mammoth book is a comprehensive survey of the variety and complexity of basket work in Borneo/Kalimantan. With conributions from a range of experts from inside and outside the island supported by extensive colour photographs the book is a tribute to a still vibrant culture. 538 pages with an appendix on Borneo Life and Culture by the editor, a Bibliography and an Index. Chapters include 1 - Art and Identity - Bernard Sellato, 2 - Plants, People, Techniques - Hanne Christensen & Susi Dunsmore, 3 - Northwestern Borneo - Valerie Mashman & Patricia Nayoi, 4 - Central Sarawak - Jean-Francois Blehaut, JC Swayne, Heidi Munan & Diana Rose, 5 - The Basketry of Sabah - Patricia Regis, Robin Lojiwin, GC Woolley & Hanne Christensen, 6 - Northeastern Highlands - Valerie Mashman, Martin Lenjau, Martua T Sirait & Bernard Sellato, 7 - Central Borneo - Arne Martin Klausen & Mering Ngo, 8 - Southern Kalimantan - Pascal Couderc & Roy W Hamilton, 9 - A Florilege of Mats -  Heidi Munan, Janet Rata Noel & Arnoud H. Klokke, 10 - Bags, Boxes, Covers, Trays, Traps - Marieanne Davy Ball, 11 - Modernity and Market - Hendrik Tillema & 12 - Borneo Art and Style - Dianne Tillotson Ne Hardback in a New Dust Jacket First Edition

Following the ceding of Sarawak by the Brooke family to the British Government at the end of World War II, a group of anthropologists were employed by the Government to produce studies on the main ethnic groups in the state. The author's original remit was to study Chinese clan associations, but he extended it to cover Chinese society generally. The result is a fascinating study of how an immigrant community copes and thrives in their new home country. The timing of the study, within three years of the war, was particularly relevant not only because of the advent of Communism in China but also because the community was still licking its wounds after a miserable time during the Japanese occupation. 175 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details. Near Fine Paperback Reprint 

The author originally went to Borneo in the late 1950s to research the methods by which the Dusun teach their children customary behaviour. He returned in 1962 to validate and extend  his research. In this book he provides the reader with a succinct, yet comprehensive review of Dusun society at the time. First Edition. Good Paperback  100 pages including black and white illustrations, a glossary and a bibliography. The book's chapters include - 1. The Background of Customary Dusun Behaviour, 2 - Conceptions of the Natural World, 3- Religious Belief and Behaviour, 4 - Omens, Luck and Chance 5 - Sickness and Death, 6 - Social Relations, 7 - Property, Order and Authority, 8 - Subsistence and Economy, 9 - Life Experience and World View.Very Good Paperback First Edition

This book is an essay on the history of the Ibans based on oral materials. Three themes were discussed chronologically - pioneer settlement in the area of Sarawak's Second Division, a phase of additional Iban settlement and consolidation in the river valleys and contact with coastal societies and migrations to other parts of Sarawak. A great book which outliningt the traditions of Ibans. . 134 pages with appendix, notes, maps and photos. Very Good Hardback in a Very Good Dust Jacket. First American Edition

Malaysia & Singapore - Business, Economics & Labour

This collection of essays reflect and seek to advance Sanjaya Lall's major contribution to development economics, i.e. a focus on revitalising the discipline through reflecting on economies' ability to build technology and government and private sector interaction. The essays include case studies from Asia and Latin America. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 439 pages with figures, tables and an index.

A history of the development of Chinese and Indian immigrant labour from the time of the British settlement of Penang until the early 20th century. Jackson, a member of the Malayan Civil Service, concentrates particularly on the rubber and tin mining industries. Good+ Hardback. First Edition. 162 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page. 

This claims to be one of the first major studies of the impact of party politics on the formulation and implementation of Malaysia's economy, despite Government claims to the contrary. The reader is briefed firstly on the colonial economy, followed by the New Economic Policy with five case studies, privatising state assets with two further case studies and an account of Malaysia's 'New Rich' with four further case studies. 207 pages with a bibliography, an index and extensive tables and figures.Near Fine Paperback. Second Edition 

This is a collection of previously published articles by a former Director General of Valuation and Property Services in Malaysia. Distilled into this selection is the author's 35 year experience as a valuer, lecturer, researcher and regulator covering most issues that one is likely to come across when dealing with Malaysian real estate. New Paperback. First Edition. 304 pages with an index.

Malaysia & Singapore - Children

A whimsical children's story about kampung life set in a Malay kampung in mid 20th century Malaya. 56 pages with four colour illustrations and other line drawings by Nora Hamerton. Very Good Hardback. First Edition

Malaysia & Singapore - Chinese Community & Culture

In this broad ranging review of Chinese emigration, Kuhn not only covers migration out of China from the 16th century onwards, but also internal migration and its causes and consequences. While this 'modern' phase of migration was initially spurred on by profitable European collaboration, the author also deals the negative aspects of this movement of people when host communities abandoned their welcome for persecution. The 'post-Mao' new spurt of immigration is treated as just the latest phase in this centuries long process. New Paperback. First Edition. 431 pages with an index. For further details, please see the scanned contents page. 

The catalogue accompanying an exhibition held at the Singapore History Museum on the history of Chinese Secret Societies in Singapore. The book does not confine itself to photographs of the display of the collection of William Stirling, Assistant Protector of Chinese in Singapore in the 1920s. There is also a considerable amount of information on the societies' history, activities and rituals. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 109 pages with many colour photographs. For further details, please see the scanned contents pages

Malaysia & Singapore - Cinema, Dance & Drama

Traditionally Mak yong is a form of dance and acting which was mainly practiced in Kelantan, formerly  part of Thailand's Patani Province. As a result of the author's submissions, Mak yong was designated by UNESCO as a Masterpiece of Oral and Intangible Heritage of Mankind in 2005. This book is a collection of the author's essays on this unique art form including its entertainment, healing, traditional and modern aspects. New Paperback. First edition. 103 pages with references and an index. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Cooking & Food

Nonya Heritage Kitchen: Origins, Utensils and Recipes - Ong Jin Teong   RM130

Building on the success of his Penang Heritage food, Ong Jin Teong introduces the reader to a representative selection of utensils used by the Straits Chinese community for producing the fusion food for which they have become famous. Like the dishes themselves, the influences from China, the Malay Archipelago and Europe, inspired the implements' design. There is also plenty of room for familiar and rare recipes as well including Bak Chang, Rempah Udang, Sugee Cake, Kiam Chai Ark, Kuih Bahulu, Cheak Bee Soh, Sesargon, and Kuih Koci. New Hardback  276 pages with colour photos of the the utensils and recipes explained. 

The racial mix of Malaysia and Singapore has, amongst other things, produced two food cultures distinctive to the region, the Eurasian and the Nonya cooking styles. While recipe books and restaurants devoted to the latter abound in both countries, Eurasian food and, especially, how to prepare it, are more difficult to come by. Here the queen of that bastion of Singaporean Eurasian culture, St. Joseph's Church in Victoria Street, introduces cooks to a culture that manages to incorporate borrowings from Chinese, Dutch, English Indian, Malay, Peranakan (Straits Chinese) and Portuguese cuisines. New Paperback Reprint. Originally published in 2001 176 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details. 

Better known as a novelist, bringing to life stories of the Baba/Nonya or Straits Chinese community, the author has collected together in this book a selection of the community's famous fusion cooking.  She was brought up in a Penang Straits Chinese household, so her historical and anecdotal introductions to each section are particularly informative. Near Fine Paperback.  143 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page. 

Kueh, a small cake, usually sweet, are a popular snack in Malaysia,  Singapore and elsewhere in Southeast Asia. They're often prepared by specialist bakers using  'grandmas' recipes' and are generally not attempted by the home cook. In this book, the author seeks to bring both the making and appreciation of kueh within the reach of everyone. New Hardback. Reprint. Originally published in 2020. 292 pages. For further details please see the scanned contents page

Malaysia & Singapore - Crime & the Law

Despite Singapore's reputation as being a place of near financial purity, the city state is not immune from the occasional case of fraud or kidnapping. In this book details are given of ten such cases that made headlines at the time. New Paperback 168 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page. 

The author, a Malaysian academic, introduces the reader to the various characteristics of Islamic criminal law generally and then proceeds to compare it with current Malaysian law. The book his heavily referenced to the work of other scholars on the subject. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 177 pages with a bibliography and an index.  

Malaysia & Singapore - Education

Khoo Kay Kim, a professor of history at the university, traces the institution's origins from being a medical college through to becoming a fully fledged university, firstly in Singapore and then in Kuala Lumpur. The university remains the country's leading academic institution. 171 pages with an index. New Paperback. First Edition 

Malaysia & Singapore - The 'Emergency'

The first 28 pages of this book are a retrospective on the military activities of both the Government and the insurgents. The larger part  of the book is a matter of fact day by day record of events, connected with the 'Emergency', during its first three years when the British found it difficult to cope with the communist onslaught. From this it is possible to discern patterns of attack and response by both sides. Good Paperback. First Edition  121 pages with several black and white plates and a few tables.

This book remains a classic on the 1948-60 communist insurrection in Malaya. The author's unrestricted access to Malayan Government confidential and secret papers without similar access to Communist sources obviously influences his viewpoint to a great extent. Nevertheless the book is a thorough a record of the events and has influenced the conduct of counter insurgency warfare since. Very Good Hardback. First Edition 547 pages including a glossary, appendix, bibliography and index. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Environment, Nature & Wildlife

This 248 page book sets out to be a comprehensive guide to consumable herbs still easily found in the tropical vegetation of Malaysia and Singapore. Each herb has been photographed growing in its natural habitat and colour coded as to whether it is fit for medicinal, edible, flavouring, cosmetic or other uses. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details.New Paperback

Holttum, the Director of the Singapore Botanic Gardens in  the immediate pre and post war periods, presents this collection of nine studies of common flowers, easily found in Malayan gardens, to introduce the young to the appreciation and study of the country's flora. The book starts with a survey of general characteristics and then covers specific families including orchids, hibiscus, daisies, verbena and water lilies. Good PaperbacGoodk. First Edition. 35 pages including a page of line drawings for each study.

Through the centuries the practice of Malayan traditional medicine, based on herbal remedies, has developed into a sophisticated form of healing. Malaysia is the host to at least 1000 special of plants that have a pharmaceutical value. In this book the authors detail 30 of such species, in each case providing the botanical and vernacular names, the plant's uses in traditional medicine, a colour photograph and an anatomical description. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 158 pages with references, a glossary and an index. For further details of the plants covered in this volume, please see the scanned contents pages. 

Through the centuries the practice of Malayan traditional medicine, based on herbal remedies, has developed into a sophisticated form of healing. Malaysia is the host to at least 1000 special of plants that have a pharmaceutical value. In this book the authors detail 30 of such species, in each case providing the botanical and vernacular names, the plant's uses in traditional medicine, a colour photograph and an anatomical description. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 1164 pages with references, a glossary and an index. For further details of the plants covered in this volume, please see the scanned contents pages.

This set is probably the most comprehensive record of birds of the Malay peninsula and began with Volume I: The Commoner Birds, published in 1927,  329 pages, was followed by Volume II: The Birds of the Hill Stations published in 1928, 310 pages, Volume III: Sporting Birds; Birds of the Shore and Estuaries, published in 1936, 264 pages, Volume IV: Birds of the Low-Country Jungle and Scrub, published in 1939, 487 pages, and ended with Volume V:: Conclusion, and Survey of Every Species, 448 pages, published in 1976. Each of the volumes has 25 full page colour plates and indices. Very Good Hardbacks. First Edition.

The three islands, off the Northwest coast of the Malaysian state of Sabah, are home to a variety of birds, which are usually easier to see there, compared to the mainland, because of a lack of predators on the islands. This book resulted from a four day project by members of the Society to document the Philippine Megapode and other bird life there. Each of the species is illustrated with at least one colour photograph and information for identification and about its habitat. New Paperback First Edition. 58 pages. For further details please see the scanned contents page

This book is the most comprehensive guide yet published to about 100 species of birds to be found in the richly biodiverse setting of the campus of Universiti Sains Malaysia in Penang. There are at least two colour photographs for each of the subjects together with brief notes on identification, habitat and eating habits. The book also contains information on the best places on the campus to find birds together with a complete checklist. New Paperback First Edition. 253 pages. 

The purpose of the book is to provide an update in various areas of biodiversity research in Malaysian Borneo. Subjects covered include primate diversity, the diet of proboscis monkeys, the behaviour of bats, small mammals and shrews, birds of Kuching Wetland National Park, Bako Village, Satang and Talang-Talang Islands, frogs, freshwater fishes, termites and much else besides. New Paperback. First Edition. 219 pages including many colour photographs, tables, an index and a list of scientific names.

This is the most comprehensive book yet published on lizards in and around Malaysia. Not only does the author bring together the findings of various studies from the 19th century onwards, but he also shares his own research of more than a decade into various lizard species he and his colleagues have identified. Each species has a detailed description, information on its distribution, habitat and behaviour as well as references to other works on the subject. It appears that the description of each species is accompanied by at least one colour photograph. New Hardback First Edition. 728 pages with numerous colour photographs, maps and a list of references. 

This book is basically a listing of over 70 species of flora and 200 species of fauna to be found in this state park stretching over 100,000 hectares of Perak. The description of each species includes a colour photograph and information on identification and habitat as well as a QR code linking each species to further information on the Malaysian Biodiversity Information System website. New First Edition. Paperback. 297 pages with a bibliography and an index .

A photographic guide to the wildlife found in Sarawak around Mount Santubong, particularly the Kuching Wetlands, Talang Salang and Bako National Parks. New paperback. First Edition. 111 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page

It is surprising, considering the amount of academic attention plants in the Malay Archipelago have received since the early 19th century, that knowledge of the the araceae or aroid family is still incomplete. In this work the authors, as part of the Flora of Peninsular Malaysia project, catalogue all of the known genera and species at the time of publication with information of previous studies, distribution, taxonomy, ecology and some notes. New Hardback First Edition. 146 pages with some colour plates. For further details please see the scanned contents page.

A collection of papers from a 1999 international conference on tropical peat swamps. The papers are divided into five sections looking at 1) flora and fauna, 2) the structure and function of peat swamps, 3) water resources within the swamps, 4) the socioeconomic aspects involving communities depending on peat swamps and 5) techniques for managing peat swamps. New First Edition Paperback. 356 pages with numerous graphs, tables and illustrations.

A guide to gardening in the tropics based on the experiences of the author in his garden in Kuala Lumpur. After nearly three decades living in Malaysia, the author became interested in gardening. So this book moves from the basics to glorious abundance. The book is illustrated with water colours and colour photographs. Near Fine Hardback in a Very Good Dust Jacket. First Edition. 110 pages. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Fiction

After the May 1969 racial riots in Malaysia, the environment is still fierce and tense. The issues of racial violence and political strife are heard through the multi-racial characters, Yun Ming, Siti Sara, Omar and Dahlan. How will the country hold together? Will life ever return to normal? 235 pages with glossary. New Paperback Reprint

This novel has the distinction of being generally considered to be the first Singaporean novel in the English language. This reprint comes with a 29 page appreciation by Koh Tai An. The story, now a literary text in universities, centres around a shy Kwang Meng trying to escape the drudge of 1960s Singapore through dreams of far away places. Despite him being a loser, the reader is given the impression that somehow he will win through. New Paperback. New edition with an updated 43 page introduction by the author  l & 155 pages. Originally published in 1972

The  three books of the trilogy Time for a Tiger, Enemy in the Blanket and Beds in the East are some of the best known works in English of the effects of the Malayan Emergency on the declining British Empire and those who struggled to maintain it and those who were ready to see it go. Burgess took the trouble to learn both spoken and written Malay which enabled him to present a more multi-dimensional picture of society than many of his contemporaries writing about the country. 583 pages. New Paperback Reprint 

An anthroplogist by training, the author puts her experiences of living and working with the people of Kelantan to good use, by writing the first ever detective series in English set in the state. Mak Cik Maryam, a Kota Bharu street trader steps into to try to solve a local murder that baffles the police. Despite becoming involved in a world of black magic and being subjected to vile spells put on her by the culprits, she doesn't give up. Winner of Best Debut Novel (Singapore Book Publishers Association Inaugural Book Awards 2012) New Paperback 

One of several books that Brereton wrote for children extolling the fiction adventures of heroic Englishmen coping with the pesky locals who got in their way. Good Hardback. First Edition. 384 pages with eight black and white illustrations by Fritz Bergen.

Malaysia & Singapore - Gender Issues

In this book the authors publish the results of a yearlong study into the implementation of the Malaysian 1999 Code of Practice on the Prevention and Eradication of Sexual Harassment in the Workplace. The study was carried out in six selected companies enabling the authors to determine the extent to which the code was effective and make recommendations for its improvement. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 213 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

Peletz discusses the history and ethnography of gender relations in a Malay society in Negeri Sembilan. He analyses the different ways of heavily gendered symbols of ‘reason’ and ‘passion’  that are set up by Malay Muslims. He also explains the cultural and political processes implicated in the constitution of feminine and masculine identity. Peletz’s study is historical and comparative. A valuable book that presents an interesting model for the analysis of gender and culture. Near Fine Paperback First Edition  402 pages with notes, bibliography and index  

The 1995 Fourth World Conference on Women was significant in producing a Platform for Action to expand and entrench women's rights globally. In this book the author takes exception with some parts of the platform, branding it as  being 'an attempt at neo-colonization (while)...ignoring other cultures and traditions across the world.' Very Good Paperback. Revised Expanded Edition. 293 pages with a bibliography 

Malaysia & Singapore - Guide Books

A pocket sized handbook for tourists visiting Malaya in the 1920s. 356 pages including many black and white photographs by Kleingothe and others as well as seven watercolours by Mrs HC Barnard. Including a fold out map in a pocket at the rear. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details. Very Good Hardback. Third Impression. Originally published in 1910. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Health & Medicine

A report on the prevalence and treatment of various forms of diarrhoea and dysentery in Malaya during the early 20th century. Besides covering the various types of such illnesses, the authors also deal with the various treatments employed at the time. Good Hardback. First Edition. 78 pages, a list of references and 44 black and white plates

Until the 19th century what is now Malaysia's sparse population was confined to a few settlements surrounded by tropical rainforest. It is not surprising therefore that the country's inhabitants relied heavily on forest produce for not only food, but for medicinal treatment. This lavishly illustrated book is a guide to the forest based remedies developed by both the original inhabitants and the subsequent immigrants, Malay, Chinese and Indians. Near Fine Hardback in a Near Fine Dust Jacket. First Edition. 256 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page

Malaysia & Singapore - History

Winstedt, a former civil servant and Malay scholar,  takes the reader from prehistoric times through to the early 1950s in one of the 20th century classic histories of the country.  Very Good Paperback.  Revised 1961 Edition. 275 pages with seven black and white plates, a dozen line drawings, a bibliography, an index and eight appendices including four genealogies of Malay royal houses.

An in depth assessment of the city's role in various countries' military strategies from the thirteenth to twentieth centuries with a variety of maps, a bibliography and an index. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 398 pages.

In this seventh volume of The Encyclopedia of Malaysia a group of distinguished academics contribute short essays on various aspects of the country's emergence from a collection of little known states into a country with a place on the world stage. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. Reprint. Originally published in 2001. 144 pages with many colour illustrations. For further details please see the scanned contents page.

An interesting study, by a former professor of Geography at the University of Malaya, on the interaction between the natural geography of Malaya and human settlement from the earliest times up until the early 20th century. Fair Hardback in a Poor Dust Jacket  144 pages. For further details please see the scanned contents page

A collection of a variety of travellers' impressions of Singapore from 1819 to 1941. The accounts from are arranged in chronological order providing snapshots of the city as it developed. This is an expanded edition. Very Good Paperback 301 pages with a glossary, chronology and index.

Malaysia & Singapore - History (Pre-18th Century)

 In this comprehensive work the author attempts to piece together the historical geography of the peninsula before more reliable written records started appearing from the mid 16th century onwards. The work was ground breaking because for the first time Wheatley painstaking re-examines whatever first hand resources were available rather than relying on second hand translations and suppositions. This 388 page book is divided into seven parts namely I - China & the Malay Peninsula, II - The Malay Peninsula as Known to the West, III - The Indians in Malaya, IV - The Arabs in Malaya, V Three Forgotten Kingdoms, VI - The Isthmian Age, and VII - A City that was Made for Merchandise. There are also numerous maps, diagrams and a bibliography of more than 40 pages.         New Paperback Reprint   

Malaysia & Singapore History (20th Century)

Mills opens his introduction to the book with the words, "The British attitude towards the tropical Empire has usually been one of lack of interest varied by spasmodic attention when one of the colonies forced itself upon public notice." Interestingly the book was researched in the year before the Japanese surprised Britain by taking over Hong Kong and Malaya by the time this book was published. His survey, probably the most significant of these two countries in the inter war period, also compares British imperial efforts with those of the United States in the Philippines and the Dutch in the Netherlands East Indies. 581 pages with two fold out maps and an index. Very Good Hardback in a Good Dust Jacket

The author carried out field work in Jelawat, Kelantan, between 1967 and 1969 in an attempt to get an anthropological grip on the community and to study its history. The area was undergoing some upheaval at the time because the Pan- Malayan Islamic Party (PMIP) had wrested power from more traditional parties supported by the state's nobility. One of the key themes of the book is the 20th century transformation of the relationship between former rulers and the  peasantry. 311 pages. The contents include chapters on - Malaysia, Kelantan and the Islamic Party, Kelantan before 1886, The Years of Foreign Intervention, Jelawat under Colonial Rule, Agriculture and Class in Jelawat, The Origins of Party Politics in Town and Country, The Impact of Party Politics in the Countryside, Land, Peasants and Parties, Party Politics and the Administration of Islam, Religious Ideas and Social Reality. There are also three appendices, a glossary, bibliography and index as well as 4 maps, 15 black and white illustrations, diagrams and tables. Good Hardback in a Good Dust Jacket. First Edition  


The author, Cheah Jin Seng while pursuing a distinguished medical career, has also found time to collect stamps and post cards so that he has become one of the foremost authorities in these fields in Singapore and Malaysia. In this book, his sixth published collection, Professor Cheah provides us with an eclectic historical record of the state of Johor in the early days of photography . New Softback. First Edition 191 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.   

Malaysia & Singapore - Literature

Sasterawan Negara Muhammad Haji Salleh dan Siti Zainon Ismail merupakan  dua nama besar dalam rentas budaya dunia sastera Melayu di dalam dan luar negara. Kedua-dua penyair alam ini banyak mengolah perasaan halus mereka secara metafora, menzahirkan kecintaan yang amat mendalam terhadap alam, bukan sahaja dari luar malah dari dalam diri mereka sendiri. Secara khusus, buku ini cuba mengupas pengalaman emosi, kembara seni dan intelektual dalam gaya bahasa pada puisi-puisi pilihan. New Paperback. First Edition. 177 pages. For further details please see the scanned contents page 

Malaysia & Singapore - Magic & Popular Religion

Like many parts of Asia, Malaysia has it's fair share of magic, ghosts and other forms of hocus pocus. In this book, an ex-lawyer gives his readers a sprinkling of stories to give them a shudder or two, but also provides a range of antidotes for those brave enough to grapple with the dark forces. New paperback. First edition. 200 pages.

Laderman combines a  review of Western literature on  Malay Shamanism, also known as main peteri,with  the results of her time spent with Malay shamans in the late 1980s.. The book is divided into 2 parts: (i) An introduction to Malay Shamanism and (ii) Texts of three main peteri. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 199 pages including 9 chapters, notes and a list of references cited

Malaysia & Singapore - Malay Community & Culture

Wilkinson led the first systematic attempt to write an account of the Malays of the peninsula, their society, culture and history. The results were published in a series of papers. In this work the papers reprinted cover historical subjects, i.e. Part I - The Peninsular Malays, Part II - Perak State Council Minutes & Part III - Negri Sembilan. There is an introduction by Dr Peter Burns where he gives a background to the publication and describes the paper as a whole. Near Fine Hardback in a Very Good Dust Jacket First edition of this collection. The papers themselves were originally published in the 1920s. 468 pages  Please see scanned contents pages for further details

This book is arguably the most comprehensive insight into the workings of a bomoh, as shamans of the Malay community are called. While head of the Faculty of Medicine at the University of Malaya, the author befriended Nik Abdul Rahman, the royal healer attached to the household of the Sultan of Kelantan, so as to understand his philosophy and practice. After Nik's death, the bomoh's family made his writings available to the author as well. From this Werner has pieced together an exposition as to how Islamic, Hindu, Buddhist and pagan traditions influenced the healer's work. New Paperback. First Edition 763 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

The Malay kris (keris) is probably unique among weapons in that it is fairly useless in combat because of an inherent design fault. Nevertheless for many Malays it is a symbol of their culture because of its supposed supernatural powers and place in Malay legend. In this amply illustrated book, Frey not only looks at the knife's origins and varieties of design but also explains why and how it came to assume this semi-hallowed status. Very Good Hardback. Second Edition Reprint of the 1988 edition 74 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details. Near Fine Hardback. Second Edition. Originally published in 1986

Malaysia & Singapore - Miscellaneous

Slightly prurient and voyeuristic Accounts of ten Singaporean cases where mainly men were exposed as doing things they shouldn't have been doing with women. The exception is the first case which recounts how a well brought up Singapore woman agreed to have sex with 251 men in ten hours. New Paperback 165 pages For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

This book is probably unique in that it gives an imagined picture of expatriate life in Malaya before the Second World War through the eyes of the author's Siamese cats. Sim had to leave Anthony, Cleo, Caesar, Ptolemy and Adam behind when she and her family fled Malaya as it was being invaded by the Japanese in 1941. Very Good Hardback in a Good Dust Jacket. First Edition. 103 pages with some black and white plates and some line drawings by the author

Noor, who has been dubbed as 'Malaysia's hippiest intellectual' demonstrates his wide ranging intellect as well capacity to inform and entertain in this collection of lectures. The chapter titles alone are enough to make one want to read further. Contents 1 - Pity the Poor Keris  (The Transcultural Origins of the Keris and How it was turned into an Ethno-Nationalist Marker), 2 - The Lost Tribes of Malaysia ( The Construction of Race Politics From Colonial Era to the Present), 3 - Of Rajas, Maharajas, Dewarajas and the Kerajaan ( Four Thousand Years of Feudal Politics from Majapahit to Malaysia Today), 4 - From Pigafetta to Panji (Revisiting the History of Sexuality in Southeast Asia in the Hikayat Panji Semirang), 5 - The Red Green Alliance ( The 'Left-Leaning Years'of the Pan-Malaysian Islamic Party (PAS), 6 - Hang Tuah The Pacifisct (Deconstructing Our National Hero) and an extensive biography. Very Good Paperback Reprint. Originally published in 2009 287 pages

Malaysia - Orang Asli/Indigenous Peoples

The Jah-Het, or Jah Hut, people are a small aboriginal group living in Pahang state in Malaysia. In this book, Werner introduces the reader to a wide range of the tribe's deities, numbering more than a thousand, as represented in wood carvings. 637 pages with nearly 750 black and white plates, 34 line drawings and two maps. Near Fine Hardback in a New Dust Jacket First Edition 

Benjamin's work amongst the Temiar aboriginal people of North Malaysia began as he prepared for his doctoral thesis in the 1960s. In this book, he not only revisits his earlier work, but brings it up to date on the basis of his continued living with and research amongst the Temiars since then. This ethnographic study can be read on many levels, not only as a study of Temiar religion, but also as an exploration of religion in societies generally and as a record of the changing intellectual framework of anthropology since Benjamin first encountered the Temiars. New Paperback  450 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details


A short history of the colonial development of Penang with 19 black and white plates. Very Good. Paperback First Edition 56 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

Still in the publisher's shrink wrapping A stunning introduction to Penang's heritage with a rich combination of beautiful colour photographs by James Bain Smith, an international artist and photographer and informative and well researched text by Julia de Bierre, a restoration expert who was born and grew up in Penang. The book does not just confine the reader to George Town, the well-known UNESCO World Heritage Site, but ventures into other equally captivating parts of the island elsewhere. Near Fine Hardback in a Very Good Dust Jacket. Over 500 colour photographs in its 152 pages, 2 pages of maps and a select bibliography.

Malaysia & Singapore - Peranakan/Straits Chinese

Building on their collaboration in writing about and photographing houses influenced by Chinese design in Asia, Knapp and Ong in this book turn their attention to the architecture, artifacts and customs of the Peranakan Chinese. This group of emigrants settled in Southeast Asia before the major influxes from the 19th century onwards, married into their host communities and produced a distinct culture. The informative text and lavish photographs highlight the Peranakans' multicultural tastes, drawing on influences from Chine, Europe and their new home communities. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. 160 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

From the seventeenth century onwards Chinese immigrants have made Nanyang, Southeast Asia, their home. Before the nineteenth century most of the new settlers married into existing communities creating a distinct culture, known to day as the Peranakan or Straits Chinese tradition. In this book we get at least a visual representation of what that culture produced with a wide range of historic photographs with explanatory text. Peter Lee is the Curator of the Peranakan Museum in Singapore. 123 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details. New Paperback Reprint 

Malaysia & Singapore - Poetry

Buku koleksi pantun pilihan peranakan baba yang pertama ini pasti boleh memenuhi keperluan pengkaji pantun dan kebudayaan peranakan baba. Selama ini, hanya beberapa rangkap pantun baba dipetik dalam makalah jurnal dan kertas kerja seminar berhubung kebudayaan peranakan baba, selain karya itu tidak diliputi dalam buku tentang sastera dan pantun Melayu. Pemilihan sejumlah 1,343 rangkap pantun ini dibuat berdasarkan karya itu sudah memenuhi syarat asasi pantun, iaitu mempunyai pembayang dan maksud, berima a-b-a-b di hujung baris, jelas maksud serta mesejnya, dan telah diterbitkan antara tahun 1890-an hingga 1930-an. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 181 pages.

Muhammad Haji Salleh, one of Malaysia's leading poets, was inspired by the parklands of  the campus of Universiti Sains Malaysia during different months of the year for this set of poems in Bahasa Malaysia. With illustrations by Zakaria Ali. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 101 pages

Malaysia & Singapore - Religion

A Muslim devotional book explaining selawat, a particular Arabic phrase designed to salute the Prophet Mohamed. The author also sets out the various circumstances in which selawat can be used and how it is beneficial to the worshipper. New Hardback. First Edition. 126 pages. 


This book updates Gullick's previous history of Malaysia's capital city to the eve of World War II. Unlike his previous work this book is annotated so as to enable the reader to consult the relevant primary sources, if the the need should arise. 264 pages with a further 32 black and white photographs. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.New Paperback. Reprint

From the 19th century onwards postcards became rapidly popular internationally as a cheap and simple means for those away from home to give relatives and friends left behind images of life abroad. In this collection of black and white photographs depicting life in Malaya's capital city, we see examples of the city's growth, the commercial hub of Chinatown, Government buildings, colonial architecture, some glimpses of life of Malayans and a selection of different modes of transport popular during the period. Fine Paperback. First edition. 114 pages. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Transport

It was not until 1886 that Singapore had the benefit of the beginnings of a tram system, powered by steam, although there probably were a few buses before this. In this book a couple of enthusiasts have compiled what must be the most comprehensive account of public transport on the island during this period. 256 pages . Very Good Hardback. First Edition For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

Malaysia & Singapore - World War II

A detailed account of the fall of Singapore in 1942 with a day by day account, many maps and photographs. There is also a visitor's guide to the remaining sites of the battle.  New Paperback Reprint 128 pages. 

A mainly pictorial account of the Japanese occupation of Singapore based on items in the National Archives of Singapore. The book not only contains black and white photos of the time but colour photos of ephemera from the period. 192 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details.Very Good Paperback First Edition . 

This is the classic story of one of the first jungle war experts of the modern era. He takes us through the period of the Japanese occupation of Malaya. Between the invasion and the fall of Singapore he was involved in behind the scenes operations to try to sabotage the Japanese advance. After Singapore fell he remained on the peninsula working with the orang asli (aborigines) and Communist guerillas to do what he could to undermine the occupation until the return of the British. New Paperback Reprint. Originally published in 1949 347 pages with 5  maps and  black and white plates 

These are the internment diaries of George Peet, who was editor of the prestigious Straits Times newspaper both when Singapore fell to the Japanese and again immediately after the end of the war. As a seasoned journalist he was able to bring to life the ingenious methods used by civilian internees to make the best of a bad lot during their imprisonment. The book is compiled and edited by his granddaughter. New Paperback. First Edition. 245 pages. 


In this wide ranging analysis Professor Yoshihara sets out to explain why incomes of countries in North and South East Asia which did not differ by much in the mid 20th century were so disparate by the century's end. He looks at factors such as internal and international income distribution, economic perameters, planned and market economies, law and order and culture in coming to his conclusion. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 223 pages with suggestions for further reading. 

  Very Good Paperback First Edition 62 pages For further details please see the scanned contents page.

As an antidote to the more common portrayal of Muslims as fundamentalist isolationists, the author, through a series of case studies highlights cosmopolitan and inclusive trends in Indonesia, Malaysia and Singapore. His study covers the period from the 1970s to the early 21st century. New Paperback. First Edition.  210 pages with a bibliography and an index. 

A study of the social lives of the mixed bag of people who established British power from Malaya eastwards. The author looks at the motivations, methods of government and the people they mixed with. Stamford Raffles, James Brooke, Jardine and Matheson are among the characters included. Very Good First Edition in a Very Good Dust Jacket. 259 pages with many black and white photographs.  For further details, please see the scanned contents page.


An informed and comprehensive. introduction to feng shui, the ancient Chinese practice of designing dwellings, for the living and the dead, so as to accord with the Chinese view of the relationship of  the animate and inanimate with each other. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 143 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page

An experienced practitioner in phrenology, physiognomy and palmistry, known in Chinese as Kan Xiang, introduces the reader to the basic principles of these skills. The book is amply illustrated with sketches of the main head, face and hand characteristics that should be noted. Good Reprint. Originally published in 1991. 132 pages. 

A dictionary of Chinese characters in the simplified form. The dictionary includes 2000 examples of the use of the characters in words, the correct sequence of strokes for each character and the Hanyu pinyin transliterations of the characters.  Near Fine Paperback .510 pages


A comprehensive guide to paper currency issued in India between the 18th and 20th centuries. The work is a collaboration between various collectors and scholars and is unusual in that so many of the specimens have been illustrated with colour photographs. Near Fine Hardback in a Near Fine Dust Jacket. First Edition. 457 pages with a bibliography. 


For thirty years prior to the publication of this book the author has visited and lived in Borneo as a geologist, anthropologist and historian. In this collection of essays his focus is on several small tribes living in the Müller Mountains in Indonesian Borneo, particularly the Aoheng. Very Good Paperback. First Edition 221 pages For further details please see the scanned contents page.

A retelling of part of the story of Prophet Adam in Madurese. Good Paperback. First edition. 30 pages. 

Although most students of Southeast Asian history first notice the British East India Company when it set up its outpost in Penang in 1786, the Company had been far from idle in the area in the previous century. This book, based on Company records, traces the history of an outpost set up in Bantam (present day Banten) in Java to compete with both the Dutch and Portuguese in the area. The most significant result from the Company's operations there was to use the factory as a springboard for opening up trade with China. New Hardback. First Edition. 246 pages. For further details please see the scanned contents page.


Laumanns and his colleagues have since the beginning of the century being carrying out a systematic survey of the karst and caves of Laos. In this work they complete their work in Northern Laos including caves in  Houaphan province which housed the headquarters of the Pathet Lao for nine years during the Vietnam War. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 150 pages approx. with numerous maps and colour photographs


As editor-at-large of the internationally famous Filipino news web site, Rappler, Vitug is well qualified to produce this very readable account of how the Philippines took on China to enforce its rights under the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea. She outlines the history of the part of the South China Sea claimed by China, the main actors in the case and the case itself. 315 page with a bibliography and index. New Paperback. First edition. 

Sri Lanka

Vendors of perishable wares cannot expect to sell their products immediately so how an item is packed and then sold is important for a flourishing business. In this booklet the author lists a vast range of packaging and vending methods prevalent in Sri Lanka before the age of refrigeration. Good Paperback. First Edition. 46 pages with many line drawings and an index

These are a collection of articles, originally published in the Times of Ceylon, giving an account of a civil servant's experiences during the last decade of British rule and the first decade of independence. He rose to be Head of Customs and the Port Commission and was forced to resign due to political influence. His reminiscences recall a past where he believed the service to be more independent than it was at the time of his retirement. Good Paperback. First Edition. 153 pages.