Blog Archive

Wednesday 26 April 2023


New Arrivals at The Penang Bookshelf


April 2022

(Last Updated 26-4-2022)
  • 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 orders under 2 kg to Singapore.

Malaysia & Singapore - Agriculture

A collection of articles tracing changes in agricultural practices and their impact in Indonesian and Malaysian Borneo, particularly from the last decade of the 20th century onwards. Whereas during the early years following independence in both countries agriculture was mainly state driven for the purpose of poverty alleviation, the more recent expansion has been driven by private companies for the purpose of maximising profits. At the same time the population in Borneo has increased at a much faster rate than in Indonesia or Malaysia as a whole, putting pressure on employment housing and social services. New Paperback. 216 pages with figures, tables, an index and a few maps.

This is an updated edition of Hill's classic on agriculture in the region. Two new chapters have been added. New Paperback. Second Edition. 347 pages with figures, tables, a bibliography and a map. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Anthropology & Sociology

Warren traces the lives and experiences of women who travelled from China and Japan to provide sex for the men of Singapore at the height of Singapore's development during colonial times. What he has unearthed from various sources, including coroner's records, sheds light on the not so glamourous, and often gruesome, side of the city's history that seldom is mentioned in accounts of the time. 433 pages with appendices, maps, tables, a bibliography and an index.  New Paperback. Reprint. Originally published in 1986

A collection of papers presented at a conference of social scientists in 1987. The book is divided into three sections dealing with Malaysian agriculture, the ethnic nature of Malaysian politics and on the electronics industry respectively. There is also a final chapter on the country's plans to increase its population. Good Paperback. First Edition 261 pages.

Probably few now realised the importance of the 1961 fire that made 16,000 residents of the Bukit Ho Swee squatter settlement homeless. The new Government reacted by using the Housing and Development Board (HDB) to set up its first public housing project, the famous HDB flats which house about four fifths of Singapore's population today. The author grew up as a beneficiary of this project and uses that as a basis for looking back at the dangers of squatter life, the fire and what followed. New Paperback. 315 pages with a bibliography, index and some black and white plates

Since the Second World War Singapore has rapidly transformed itself into a successful modern society and business centre. Often this has also brought change to the cultural values of the island's citizens. The Government has sought to control this by emphasising its own version of what a modern Asian should be, but such policies have not necessarily met with universal acceptance. In this study, based on eight years research, the author explains the country's differing ideological sets and their inconstancies. Good Paperback. 238 pages. 

Women from the Samsui region of China have been instantly recognisable on construction sites and as domestics in Singapore because of the their distinctive red headgear. In this work, based on oral and documentary research, the author reveals the lives of this distinctive minority and what prompted their migration. New Paperback 252 pages with an index and a few black and white plates.

Malaysia & Singapore - Arts & Crafts

A catalogue to an exhibition held in New Delhi in conjunction with the Islamic Arts Museum, Kuala Lumpur. The contents include descriptions of textile weaving and decorating techniques, Malay costume on the Peninsula and decorative and ceremonial Malay textiles. As New Paperback. First Edition 63 pages with a glossary, bibliography and numerous colour illustrations.

Malaysia & Singapore - Biography & Memoirs

A useful collection of extracts of mainly visitors to the peninsulal and their impressions. So Hugh Clifford, Isabella Bird, Katherine Sim, Victor Purcell and many other similar movers and hangers on in the British set up are much in evidence. However longer term residents such as  Munshi Abdullah, Mat Syed, Chin Kee Onn and others appear too. Probably one of the best starting points for exploring this literature more widely. Very Good Paperback. First Edition  320 pages. 

This work is the first full biography of one of the architects of the expansionist phase of British influence and control over the Malayan peninsula. For this Swettenham was rewarded with his appointment as the first Resident General of the Federated Malay States in 1971. He ended the Malayan part of his career more than 30 years later as Governor and Commander in Chief of the Straits Settlements. Although the author displays painstaking scholarship based on his thorough research of original papers, he has also produced a readable study of his fascinating subject.  783 pages with a dozen diagrams and maps, nearly a hundred black and white illustrations, an appendix listing Swettenham's letters to the Times newspaper, a bibliography and an index. Near Fine Hardback in a Near Fine Dust Jacket. First Edition

This is part one of a well reviewed autobiographical trilogy. The style is simple and light hearted and the book evocative of life in Singapore before it became the Southeast Asian financial hub it is today. Very Good  Paperback. First Edition. 132 pages

A nostalgic look at a Singapore that has almost disappeared. The author grew up in the Princes Estate, known as 'Blue Windows', because of the distinctive blue glass of its louvered windows. New paperback. First Edition. 158 pages with some black and white photographs and a map. 

The story of an expedition in 1994 to explore Low's Gully on the side of Mount Kinabalu, Sabah. The team became separated from each other, had to cope with inhospitable terrain and were eventually rescued. Good Hardback in a Very Good Dust Jacket. 266 pages with some colour photographs. 


A historical study of the relationship between indigenous people and the outside word pressing in on them. In fact the people of Borneo have been trading their forest products, particularly natural rubber, for hundreds of years. So, Dove, postulates, such communities do not need economic help, but rather to be empowered politically. 332 pages with some black and white photographs, notes, references, an index and an index of plant names. 

A guide to the Sarawak Museum in Kuching as it was in the early 1960s. 23 pages with a map and line drawings interspersed within the text. For further details, please see the scanned contents page. Near Fine Paperback. Revised Edition.

Beccari was an Italian botanist who roamed about Borneo at the end of the first Brooke's time there. While the book is mainly concerned with recording Borneo's unique wildlife habitat before the developments of the 20th century, it also gives useful insights into life in Sarawak at the end of the rule of the first Rajah Brooke. This is a facsimile reprint of the original with over sixty black and white plates and line drawings and three maps. Although there's obviously lots of botanical information in the account of his wanderings that forms the main part of the book, Beccari ends the book with a 40 page appendix on the Bornean Rain Forest itself. Very Good Paperback  424 pages including an index. 

Research by the archaeologist, Stephen Chia, and his team have discovered hundreds of coffins in the Kinabatangan Valley dating back for at least a thousand years. In this work Chia details the findings and explains the customs surrounding burial which are still carried out by the Sungai and Murut communities in the area today. New Paperback. First Edition. 98 pages with several black and white and colour photographs, line drawings, a bibliography and an index

In the first monograph Liang Kim Bang, a Sarawakian, looks at the constitutional developments in Sarawak from the Second World War to Malaysian Independence. The second part brings the first monograph up to date to the formation of Malaysia. There is a foreword by KG Tregonning, who supervised the publication. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 65 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.


The author traces the ups and downs of Brunei's history from the end of the Ice Age to the modern day. While the small state once was an important trading port and exerted influence over an extensive area of the archipelago, it was boxed in by competing European colonial interests in the area. It was not until the discover of oil in 1929 that the state began to come into the modern age. A shrewd decision to keep its independence from it larger neighbours, Indonesia and Malaysia, has enabled the country enjoy the second highest living standards in Southeast Asia (after Singapore). However complexities remain as Brunei attempts to be a conservative Islamic state while adapting to the modernisation its oil wealth encourages. 345 pages with an index. 

The 1980s and 1990s saw a particular growth in finance companies, other than banks, in Malaysia. In this book the authors review the state of the industry just before the Asian financial crash, in what the authors believe to be the first such review of the industry in the country. The authors also make recommendations for the future management and regulation of the industry . Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 168 pages with various figures and tables. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Business Economics & Labour

This history of Malaysia's insurance industry is a story of growth and adaptation to changing circumstances. Whereas the industry originally limited itself to protecting fledgling mining and plantation enterprises from excessive risk, by the middle of the 20th century, it was dealing with a wider range of domestic insurance, then war risk and eventually having to adapt to foreign competition. The author also covers the activities of tariff trade associations and insurance trade associations. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. First Edition. 647 pages with tables, a bibliography and an index.

The author bases his advice for business strategies on the legendary life of Hang Tuah who reportedly was a significant warrior in the court of Malacca in the 15th century. Very Good Paperback. First Edition. 217 pages. 

The author uses his 45 years experience as a rubber planter and consultant to the industry to trace both the history of the country's rubber production and also the growth of industries manufacturing rubber products. He also highlights the role that manufacturing of rubber produce has played in the transformation of the country from a primary commodity producer to a more industrialised economy. New Paperback. 166 pages with tables, a bibliography and an index.

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 Hakka people are known in China as the Guest People, i.e they're nomadic. So it's not surprising to find this people amply represented amongst China's migrants and their descendants all over the world. In this book we have snatches of history of one such family coming to terms with post-war Malaysia, migration to the United States and a visit to the family's ancestral home in China. Mixed in with this we are given bits of Hakka language, history and mythology as well as recipes for their traditional food. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket First Edition199 pages.

Malaysia & Singapore- Cooking & Food

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. 

Ipoh, among others, has a reputation to be one of the best places to eat out in Malaysia. This guide steers the ravenous reader around what the city has to offer. New Paperback. First Edition. 82 pages with maps and many colour photographs. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Fiction

A collection of the award winning author's short stories, digging at Singapore's underbelly with sarcasm and wit. Translated from the original Chinese. 151 pages including a list of other books in the cultural medallion series. 

A translation into English of a collection of nearly 70 pithy short stories by a prize winning Singaporean author. His style frequently mixes witty observation into otherwise grim tales, for example a boy's sole contact with his father being a weekly meeting at McDonalds or an employee trying to cure his boss suffering from tumors. The stories also are shot through with themes of coping with change against a backdrop to a rapidly developing city. New Paperback 190 pages

A sweeping historical novel set amongst the Chinese community in 19th century Sarawak. The labourers came to reap the riches that they were told of in the Brookes' Sarawak, but were often so disappointed that they rose in rebellion. Very Good Hardback. With a long dedication by the author to a previous owner. 862 pages. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Gender

The author argues that Chinese women who emigrated to Malaya, and their descendants, blossomed in a way that they were unable to do in China because, at least in theory, they were all equal under the law thanks to British legislation in the colony. To prove his point he gives the reader a selection of of snapshots of the lives of some of these women, who became entrepreneurs in their own right and distinguished professionals. 203 pages. Please see the scan of the contents page for further details.

Malaysia & Singapore - Geography & Guide Books

A lay person's snapshot of Malaya the year before independence according the the British Government's information service. It includes much of what a visitor may want to know about the country including a potted history, description of the peoples, places to see and much else besides. The Malayan 'Emergency' hardly gets a mention Good Paperback. Second Edition. 80 pages with many black and white plates, contemporary advertisements and a coloured map.

The author is arguably Malaysia and Singapore's leading demographer with several articles and books on statistics demography and investment to his credit. This book covers nearly 1,500 titles classified into 21 sections covering such aspects as census reports, urbanisation, ethnic composition, population trends and much else besides. New Hardback. First Edition 218 pages with an author index. 

This is a revised edition of Professor Ooi's classic work on the geography of peninsular Malaysia. The book is divided into three sections looking at the natural setting of the peninsula, the evolution, distribution and composition of the population and the country's economic patterns and problems respectively. Good Hardback in a Good Dust Jacket. New Edition. 437 pages with an index, maps, figures, tables and black and white photographs. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Health & Medicine

This work is a collection of mini biographies and anecdotes of medical practitioners in Malaysia from the 1940s to the early years of independence. Some were well know outside their communities, others not. Most were characters and all were pioneers in developing Malaysia's public health system. They worked at a time before the advent of the private hospitals that make Malaysia a centre of 'health tourism' today, when they were known for their selfless dedication to those in need of care. Included amongst the twenty-two stories are some unusual accounts of what it was like to be a doctor in Japanese Malaya. 298 pages with an index.

This study of the Singapore health system by a former Professor at Harvard Medical School seeks to explain how Singapore's health system was created and how it functions today. At the time of writing Singapore had the sixth best healthcare outcome, now 15th, in the world and spent proportionately less than any other high-income country to achieve this. The author looks for lessons from Singapore that could be applied elsewhere. New Paperback. First Edition. 182 pages with a bibliography and an index.

Malaysia & Singapore - History

Like many Governments elsewhere, the Peoples Action Party in Singapore has sought to construct a history that suits is past and current policies. Aspects of this version of history include starting the island's history with the arrival of the British and emphasising the importance of an interpretation of Confucian values in policy decisions and daily life. In this book the authors compare this official version of history against the more nuanced version uncovered by academic historians. New Paperback. 300 pages with a bibliography and an index.

This is the first broad look at the history of various types of civil associations, including clan and ethnic groups and political parties, from the beginning to the end of British rule in Singapore. The associations influence of British policy and activities ebbed and flowed at different times during this period. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition 259 pages with a bibliography and an index.

Malaysia & Singapore - History (18th Century)

The author, Malaysia's 'first archaeologist' and director of the Centre for Global Archaeological Research at Universiti Sains Malaysia, pulls together recent archaeological findings in Malaysia. He argues that the evidence from artifacts and structures used by the early inhabitants of the country are important in contributing to a rounded national identity. New Paperback. First Edition. 26 pages with some colour photographs.

Malaysia & Singapore - History (20th Century)

This book captures the experimental and revolutionary views and activities of a university group determined to take advantage of the limbo that followed the end of World War II in Malaya. Colonialism had been challenged throughout the world, but what would replace it? The successes and failures of the group in helping to define the new states of Malaya and Singapore are chronicled with the help of survivors of the club and other accounts of the time. 347 pages, including biographical sketches of the club members, a bibliography and an index.

The Government's main statistical publication published at a time when the country was both recovering from the World War and trying to cope with the 'Emergency'. Information included covers such topics as the population, trade and industry, finance, the social services the law and its enforcement, utilities, transport and communication. Very Good Hardback in a Good Dust Jacket First Edition  460 pages with several black and white plates and figures and tables.

Malaysia & Singapore - Indian Community & Culture

Anthropological research amongst Malaysia's Indian community is thin on the ground, compared to similar research amongst the country's other ethnic groups, and is usually conducted by researchers of Indian origin. Willford's topic is fairly challenging too - Tamil and Hindu revivalism in post-independence Malaysia. Much of the debate on this movement questions the extent to which the movement is a reaction to the rise of political Islam, even a way of insulating the community from it, and the extent to which the revival provides its adherents with greater freedom or maybe even ends up playing the role prescribed for the community by Islamic resurgence. 346 pages several figures, black and white photographs, an index, notes and a bibliography. The contents include  chapters on Marginal Distance and Social Distance: "Worthless Dregs in a Prosperous Society", The Ritual Expression of Tamil Identity in Malaysia: A Festival of Power and Penance, Fetish, Space and Displacement in Kuala Lumpur: Tamils and the Ethnic Uncanny, Hindu Ecumenical Movements and "Middleness": Familiarity and Ambivalence in Tamil Identity, Making Distinctions: "We Had Become the Laughingstock of Other Races" & Sacred Malaysia, Greater India. Paperback 

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.     


When originally published in 1988 this book was considered a major contribution to the still scantily documented history of the working class in colonial Malaya. Relying on British records and local sources, Cheah brings to life this lawless period on the borders of British Malaya and Siam. Although The British considered the area 'one of the most lawless and insecure districts,' many contemporaries also saw the robbers as heroes offering a challenge to foreign rule. 162 pages with a glossary, bibliography and index. New Paperback Reprint

Malaysia & Singapore - Magic & Popular Religion

In Malaysia, as elsewhere. traditional healing has often been bound up with dramatic performance. In the face of the advance of Western medicine many of these practices, which were ingrained in communities even before the arrival of Hinduism and Buddhism in the country, are fast disappearing. The collection of articles in this book sets out to document some of these practices including bageh, main teri, kuda kepang mabuk, seladai and the Hindu rituals surrounding Thaipusam. New Paperback. Reprint. Originally published in 2017. 91 pages with an index and some black and white photographs.

Malaysia & Singapore - Malay Community & Culture

Consulting this book helps the reader understand the importance of the 'chop' - usually the ubiquitous rubber stamp today - in many parts of Southeast Asia. Seals in this region, as well as elsewhere, were a vital guarantee of of a document's authenticity. In this meticulously researched and lavishly illustrated book, the author, the head of the Southeast Asia section at the British Museum, catalogues more than 2,000 of such seals from present-day Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, Singapore, Cambodia, the Philippines and Thailand from the 16th to the 20th centuries. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. 785 pages. For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

A group of scholars from Southeast Asia and elsewhere try to pin down a definition of 'Melayu' as they look at the Malay community and how they express themselves across a range of countries. They discover that varying interpretations of identity or nationality fail to provide one conclusive description. New Paperback. 318 Pages Reprint. Originally published in 2004. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Magic & Popular Religion

As with most countries of Asia belief in ghosts is fairly commonplace. This catalogue accompanied an exhibition that sought to highlight research on ghosts both in Malaysia and its neighbours. The exhibition was aimed at making the invisible visible with a wide range of artifacts and illustrations of ghosts and their accouterments. The text is in Bahasa Malaysia and English. New Paperback. First Edition. 161 pages with many colour illustrations 

Malaysia & Singapore - Media & Journalism

A veteran Malaysian journalist gives an insight into his craft with a collection of anecdotes explaining how he came to break various stories during his career. New Paperback. First edition. 220 pages.

Orang Asli/Indigenous Peoples

A collection of papers by academics concerned with the plight of the Orang Asli, the indigenous people of Peninsular Malaysia. This survey both records the changes to habitat, social structures and customs caused by the encroachment of others in the last century and seeks to draw lessons for small indigenous societies under threat generally. New paperback 521 pages with an index, maps and a few black and white photos.

The orchid family contains more species than any other plant family. At the last count, there were around twenty-five thousand of them and there are almost certainly more, waiting to be identified. They are also among widely distributed of plants. Some grow in bogs and others in near-desserts. This book contains an extensive collection of information on preserving this popular family of plants. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. First Edition. 433 pages with many colour illustrations.

Although trained as a lawyer in Britain, Boyle spent a fair amount of his life as a gentleman traveller and published his experiences. This account is of one of his first voyages with his brother to Sarawak in 1863. As was usual with most Victorian travellers he mixed his time between entertainment amongst his fellow expatriates with hunting forays and making notes of the peoples, countryside and flora and fauna around him. Poor Hardback First Edition Pages -.xii, 324 and 8 page publisher's catalogue. Engraved frontispiece, tissue guard and engraving on the title page.


This book draws together in a readable, compact and well illustrated format, the important elements of the early history of Penang following the establishment of the first British settlement in Malaya in 1786. Although Penang later became a British colony, Francis Light, the East India Company officer who oversaw the founding of the first major settlement on the island, claimed his principal aim was to set up a trading post. This 159 page book traces how the nature of the settlement changed from being a home for free booters and traders to an important part of the expanding British power in Southeast Asia. Chapters include 1 - The East India Company and Eastern Waters 1601-1786, 2 - 'Prince of Wales Island,' 3 - The Administration of Penang, 4 - Trade and Commerce, 5 - The Peoples of Penang, 6 - The Physical Development of Penang, 7 - Penang and Relations with the Malay Sultanates, 8 - A Crown Colony 1858 and a Bibliography.

Ever since the British gained a foothold in Penang in the late 18th century, the island's history has mainly been influenced by a foreign perspective. In this collection of essays, the contributors seek to establish an alternative narrative looking at the archaeology of the area, the history before the British arrival and the language of the area in earlier times. New Paperback. First English Language Edition. 101 pages with some photographs, tables, a bibliography and an index.

The Penang House: Rise of the Malaysian Architect, 1887-2017 - Jon Sun Hock Lim RM190

In his first definitive work on Penang domestic architecture, Lim concentrated on the works of mainly expatriate architects. In this successor volume he turns to the achievements of new generations of architects that appeared in the run up to independence and afterwards. The selection not only features those experimenting with more modern styles but also leading conservation architects of the period. The work is illustrated with numerous colour and some black and white photographs, design sketches and architectural plans. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. First Edition. 248 pages with a bibliography and an index.


This book chronicles the history of the Michaelian Military Band of St Michael's Institution, Ipoh, from the time of its inception until the date of publication. New Paperback. First Edition 230 pages with many colour and black and white photographs

From 1884 onwards Batu Gajah was made the administrative headquarters of Kinta District, which grew to be the richest district in the Federated Malay States owing to the abundance of tin deposits in the area. The author, whose family settled in the area, traces its history in the first half of the twentieth century based on research in official records as well as accounts of the colourful characters thrown up by the Tin Rush. New Paperback. Second Edition. 172 pages with some black and white plates and an index. 

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. New Paperback. First Edition. 181 pages.

Pantun are probably the best known form of Malay poetry. In this collection the editor has brought together a wide selection from literary sources with a special emphasis on pantun that have a story to tell. New Paperback. First Edition. The text is in Bahasa Malaysia 219 pages with a bibliography and an index.

Malaysia & Singapore - Politics

As the author says in her preface to this book, Malaysia's kingship is worthy of study because during the postwar period when most other monarchies around the world were losing their powers, Malaysia's hereditary rulers enjoyed something of a revival in the post-independence period. This survey from the British colonial period up to the present day must be the most exhaustive and enlightening study of the monarchy during this period. The book's 447 pages include some black and white historical photographs, genealogical tables of all the ruling houses chapters on 1 - Introduction: The Monarchy, 2 - Malay Kingship under British Colonial Rule, 3 - Malay Kingship under the Japanese Occupation, 4 - Malay Rulers and Malay Subjects, Round One: Malayan Union, a Draw, 1946, 5 - And the Real Contest Began, Round Two: Advantage to the Rulers, 1948-51, 6 - The Battle Royale, Round Three: UMNO the Ultimate Victors, 1951-55, 7 - Roles Reversed: UMNO, Rulers and Constitution, 8 - Living Happily Ever After? The Rulers-UMNO Post Independence Relations followed by appendices of important documents, a glossary, bibliography and index.

Local Democracy Denied?: A Personal Journey into Local Government in Malaysia - Lim Mah Hui RM70

A rare book on the workings of local, rather than national, government in Malaysia. The book is based on the experience of the author, with previous international academic and banking experience,  as a local councilor in Penang between 2010 and 2016. He explains how local government in Malaysia works, how it takes decisions and implements them and the frequent gaps between the two. He ends the book by calling for an overhaul of the system bringing it closer to the people that its meant to represent. New Paperback. Reprint. Signed by the Author. 

The contributors look at the effect of the growing authoritarianism in Malaysia, particularly over the couple of decades prior to publication, together with the accelerated economic development that had occurred during the same period. In the course of their analyses they look at the effect on the arts, national and ethnic identities, politics and the social structure generally. Very Good Hardback in a Good Dust Jacket First Edition. 325 pages including an index. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Postal History

For a decade from 1947 a group of philatelists specialising in the postal history of Sarawak under Brooke rule had been exchanging information on the subject. This book is a compilation of their journal articles and notes which together can be read as one of the more comprehensive accounts of the state's postal history  Near Fine Hardback. 575 pages plus an index, bibliography and some black and white plates and line drawings. 

Malaysia & Singapore - Religion

It's a not very well known fact that one of the largest indigenous groups in Malaysia are predominantly Christian. This book explains how, facilitated by the Brooke administration, missionaries began their work of conversion which has led to one of the more vibrant Christian communities in Asia today.232 pages with a bibliography, glossary and appendices.

Keasberry was a member of the London Missionary Society, the first Christian Missionary group to arrive in Singapore. In the first part of the book, the author sets out to evaluate Keasberry's work amongst the Malay community and to see whether lessons can be drawn for evangelists today. The second part of the book consists of a selection of transcribed correspondence between Keasberry and the Society. 330 pages with appendices and a bibliography. 

Malaysia & Singapore - World War II

As part of their occupation of Singapore, the Japanese created a research bureau, the Chōsabu, to study  the economy so that  military and civilian administrators could draw on the findings when formulating social and economic policies. The reports were notoriously difficult to read, and so this exceptional translation by Gregg Huff and Shinobu Majima is a true linguistic accomplishment. These are especially important as the Japanese destroyed most records of their wartime administration, leaving the Chōsabu reports as one of the few firsthand sources to have survived.  New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. First Edition 579 pages For further details, please see the scanned contents page.

The author witnessed the effects of the Japanese invasion of Malaya first hand, first as a teacher in Singapore and then with the Culture and Research Institute in his native Ipoh. While in Ipoh he started to prepare this harrowing account of life in his occupied homeland. Very Good Paperback. Reprint. Originally published in 1946. 202 pages with a map, appendices and an index. 


Buddhist Pilgrim-Monks have provided us with some of the earliest written records of societies throughout Asia. In this book the author demonstrates their influence in encouraging the development of an art style that emerged in China, Japan and Korea in the mid seventh century and lasted for about a century. The common theme was the idealisation of Buddhist kingship and statecraft resulting in a cosmopolitan art form that characterised Northeast Asia at the time. New Hardback in a New Dust Jacket. First Edition. 354 pages with many black and white and colour photographs, maps and tables. For further details, please see the scanned contents page. 

Following the rapid urbanisation of Asian cities from the end of the last century onwards, some have argued that certain unique features of structures and spaces have evolved. In this book 15 contributors explore that concnept and suggest ways in which such spaces could develop to underpin a sustainable future. New Paperback. First Edition

A collection of short stories from Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam. New Paperback. First Edition. 244 pages. For a list of authors, please see the scan of the back cover

Char siew is a popular Chinese dish of barbecued pork of which the author is particularly fond. He was surprised to discover that his home version of the dish in Singapore is quite different from char siew in Hong Kong. This discovery formed the basis of his recipe for marketing in Asia, the them of this book. With over 30 years of international marketing experience, Lee lays out in simple terms how to break into various sectors of the Asian market. Near Fine Paperback. First Edition. 204 pages with several line drawings.

Migration and its effects both on the migrant's home community and their new host community are often dealt with in the abstract. In this book. In this book, through the biographies of Mariano Ponce, Pham Hong Thai, Hilaire Noulens, Vu Trong Phung, Du Ai, Lin Bin, Ruam Wongphan, James Puthucheary, K. Bali, Connie Bragas-Regalado, and Imam Samudra, the impact of travel is given flesh within the Southeast Asian context. New Paperback. 310 pages with some black and white photographs and an index. 

Hardly a day goes by without reports of complaints of people dispossessed or excluded from land which they once enjoyed. In this book the authors take seven case studies from across the Southeast Asian region to examine how and why these shifts are taking place and argue that such disputes are ultimately not about 'exclusion' or 'inclusion' but rather that it is important to look at who is excluded, how, why and with what consequences. New Paperback. First Edition. 257 pages with figures, tables, a bibliography and an index. 

The Origins of Islamic Reformism in Southeast Asia - Azyumardi Azra  RM100

This book focuses on a neglected period of Southeast Asian Islamic history, at least in the English language. At about the same time as major European expansion in the region, in the 17th and 18th centuries, there was also another invasion, new ideas about the practice of Islam emanating, as one might expect, from the Middle East. The author traces its course and effect both on the Muslim communities and the European new arrivals. New Hardback. First Edition. 254 pages with a bibliography and subject index. 

An account of the adventurous and tempestuous life of Sultan Muwallil Wasit, otherwise known as Raja Bongsu of Sulu. He was the son of a Sultan of Brunei and reigned between 1610 and 1650. 78 pages with a bibliography. Very Good Hardback First Edition 

Sri Lanka

Wickramasinghe, a leading Sri Lankan literary figure, ruminates here on various aspects of Buddhism as practiced in Sri Lanka. Generally he argues for an escape from dogma encouraging popular practice which has been practiced for centuries. Good Paperback. Reprint. Originally published in 1964. With a Foreword by John Needham 162 pages with an index. 

Buddhism has an international reputation as a nonviolent philosophy, but the history of Sri Lanka demonstrates that is not always the case. Monks and other Buddhists there often appear at the forefront of violent conflict with apparently few qualms. In this book, Tambiah traces the transformation of Buddhism in the country from followers of the dhamma into an increasingly political movement. Good Paperback. 203 pages with references and an index.

Based on research carried out just before World War I, this book by a Professor of Charles University, Prague, remains a classic on which much subsequent work on the subject has been based. The book is divided into four parts I - Non-Masked Dancing Ceremonies, II - Sinhalese Masks and the Use of Demon Dancing, III - Kolam-Natima & IV - Yakun-Natima. 142 pages with an index and 35 black and white plates. 

A popular guide to the 227 resident species of birds in Sri Lanka. Good Paperback. 224 pages with numerous colour illustrations and line drawings and indices of common, Sinhala and scientific names.

An unabridged reprint of both volumes of Cordiner's classic work on the British maritime possessions in Ceylon at the beginning of the 19th century. Cordiner was the first principal of all schools on the island and the first Church of England clergyman to live and preach in Ceylon. During his five years in the country, he toured the country extensively noting the manners and customs of the different residents of the island. Good Paperback in a Good Dust Jacket Reprint. Originally published in 1807. 504 pages with an index and some black and white plates.

An analysis of over 300 chess endings. Max Euwe was a chess world champion in the 1930s. Good Hardback. 247 pages with many illustrations. 


Three Thai economists examine the extent and operation of Thailand's illegal economy demonstrating how it distorts the main economy and victimises so many. They also demonstrate how this black economy sustains police bribery and the country's corrupt politicians. Very Good Paperback. Reprint. 284 pages with a bibliography and an index