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Fiction In Translation

  • Mohamed Latiff Mohamed

    Confrontation

    $24.00

    translated by Shafiq Selamat Adi loves his life in the kampung: climbing the ancient banyan tree, watching ten-cent movies with his friends, fetching worms for the village bomoh. The residents of Kampung Pak Buyung may not have many material goods, but their simple lives are happy. However, looming on the horizon are political upheaval, race riots, gang wars and the Konfrontasi with Indonesia. Mohamed Latiff Mohamed, three-time winner of the Singapore Literature Prize, brilliantly dramatises ...

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  • Yeng Pway Ngon

    Costume

    $28.00

    Translated by Jeremy Tiang In the 1910s, thirteen-year-old Leong Ping Hung comes to Singapore from China to seek his fortune. Decades later, he is a lonely old man mourning his shattered dreams. His granddaughter Yu Sau struggles to take care of him while trying to make sense of her own life in a rapidly changing country. He speaks Cantonese, and she Mandarin – but will they be able to find common ground through a shared love of Cantonese opera? As Yu Sau looks to her family’s past to underst...

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  • You Jin

    Death By Perfume

    $24.00

    Translated by Jeremy Tiang In the late 1970s, a young Singaporean writer arrives in Jeddah with an infant son. She encounters a strange and often hostile environment with curiosity, empathy and good humour. In this collection of linked stories, the narrator confronts, among others, a bored expat wife with dangerously extravagant tastes, a divorced engineer with the face of a camel, and a desperate security guard who finds solace in downing bottles of perfume. Beguiling, plaintive and profound...

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  • Chia Joo Ming

    Exile Or Pursuit

    $28.00

    Translated by Sim Wai Chew Hok Leong only knows one thing about his future: he does not want to become an office boy buying coffee for his superiors. Beyond this, he wants only to roam the streets of Singapore with his rough and tumble gang of boys—that is, until he is assigned to be the Chinese tutor for the new girl that has just moved from Indonesia. From here, Hok Leong begins a path through life guided by a tide all his own. He finds himself brushing serendipitously with academics, and f...

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  • Singai Ma Elangkannan

    Flowers At Dawn

    $17.00

    translated by A.R. Venkatachalapathy War is looming when Anbarasan arrives in Singapore from Tamil Nadu in the 1940s. Stirred by charismatic Indian National Army leader Subhas Chandra Bose to take up the struggle for India’s independence, he fights alongside the Japanese against the British in Southeast Asia. In this moving novel of an early immigrant’s political and sexual awakening during World War II, Flowers at Dawn uncovers a little-known period of Singapore’s history with drama and real...

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    You Jin

    In Time, Out Of Place

    $24.00

    Translated by Shelly Byrant You Jin brings to her travel writing the same wit evident in her fiction. Whether she is trekking through the Amazon rainforest, exploring the caves of Granada with gypsy pickpockets, visiting a farm stay in Tasmania, or negotiating for a horsehair-lacquer cup in Myanmar, she is adept at weaving a whimsical incident into a compelling and amusing narrative. Her trademark spirited humour brings to life the vastness of the globe we inhabit, as well as more intimate en...

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  • Yeng Pway Ngon

    Lonely Face

    $22.00

    Translated by Natascha Bruce Singapore, late 1980s. As women gain power and independence, what’s an insecure guy to do? Lonely Face is the story of a man on the cusp of middle age, left behind by changing times. Fleeing his crumbling marriage on an overnight bus to Genting Highlands, he tries his luck at slot machines rather than the vagaries of modern romance. This snapshot of a society in flux is a newly-translated early work by acclaimed novelist Yeng Pway Ngon, Cultural Medallion recipien...

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  • Suratman Markasan

    Penghulu

    $17.00

    Translated by Solehah Ishak Pak Suleh was the penghulu of Pulau Sebidang, one of the influential village headmen of the islands of the South. Forced to relocate to a small high-rise flat on mainland Singapore, he worries for the future of his family and yearns for his beloved island. A powerful meditation on loss, Penghulu is a portrait of a man struggling to return to his old way of life. But can Pak Suleh thwart the plans of his son-in-law, a newly elected member of parliament from the ruli...

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  • You Jin

    Teaching Cats To Jump Hoops

    $17.00

    Translated by Sylvia Li-chun Lin A chain-smoking student with a violent past. A girl with a weakness for rare turtles. A boy who sees a raging fire each time he opens his exam booklet. In this collection of funny and heartwarming stories by You Jin, a teacher finds herself confronted with misfits and loners, rebellious dropouts and overbearing, even abusive parents. Yet she remains determined to reach out to her students. Combining an assured style with sensitive portrayals, Teaching Cats to ...

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  • Xi Ni Er

    The Earnest Mask

    $17.00

    translated by Howard Goldblatt and Sylvia Li-chun Lin In this Singapore Literature Prize-winning collection of stories, an aging Japanese ex-soldier, ignorant about the horrors of the Japanese Occupation, returns to Singapore for a nostalgic visit; a young boy’s sole contact with his father consists of a weekly meeting at McDonald’s; and a hopeful employee tries to win over his tumour-stricken boss with traditional Chinese medicine. Set against the backdrop of Singapore’s rapid development fr...

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  • Yeng Pway Ngon

    The Non-Existent Lover & Other Stories

    $15.00

    Featuring a selection of short stories written between the 1960s and 2000, this collection charts Yeng Pway Ngon's evolution in subject matter and style over time. The earlier stories, written at a time when Yeng was known for his modernist poetry, exude solitude and melancholy, and deal with themes such as the wanton rebelliousness of youth, or the poet's shuttling between death and dream.  From the 1970s onwards, he turned his attention to societal conerns – depicting a lonely writer who fa...

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  • Isa Kamari

    The Tower

    $17.00

    translated by Alfian Sa'at From Isa Kamari comes a masterful tale of success and failure, which has been translated for the first time into English by Alfian Sa’at, his debut work of translation. A successful architect visits the new skyscraper he designed. As he climbs the tower with Ilham, his clerk of works, he reflects upon his life and spiritual journey in an increasingly materialistic world. Memories of a dark past plague him as he struggles to reach the top, which are woven into the na...

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  • Mohamed Latiff Mohamed

    The Widower

    $24.00

    translated by Alfian Sa'at Former political detainee and professor Pak Karman loses his wife in a car accident. The intensity of his mourning causes him to become untethered from his sanity. As reality, memory and fantasy become more and more blurred, he must come to terms with his past actions before his grief overwhelms him completely. Mohamed Latiff Mohamed’s novel, hailed as a landmark in modernist Malay fiction, is an unsettling tale of psychic disintegration and obsessive love.Paperback...

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  • Yeng Pway Ngon

    Trivialities About Me And Myself

    $24.00

    Translated by Howard Goldblatt The Chinese protagonist of Cultural Medallion recipient Yeng Pway Ngon's novel, Trivialities about Me and Myself, is a journalist turned entrepreneur who possesses a split personality. “Me” is a figure consumed by greed and sexual desire, two impulses that undermine his careers, his two marriages, and his relationship with his son. Throughout the novel he engages in a dialogue with his other identity, the moralistic “Myself”, whose principled stances try but usu...

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  • Wong Meng Yoon

    Under The Bed, Confusion

    $17.00

    Translated by Howard Goldblatt The stories in Under the Bed, Confusion sketch a vast array of characters: from an aging coffee shop assistant struggling on her first day at work to a multimillionaire obsessed with crossing the fourth hurdle; from a dissident doctor exiled on the island of Pulau Tekong to a pampered, carefree mutt. Using elements of the fantastical and the satirical, this collection of mini-fiction probes Singapore’s underbelly with sarcastic wit, revealing darkly humorous and...

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  • Yeng Pway Ngon

    Unrest

    $28.00

    Translated by Jeremy Tiang When the fervour of revolution is gone, what remains? Four leftist teenagers in 1950s Malaya dedicate themselves to overthrowing colonialism and bringing about a better world. With time, their paths diverge — into capitalism, into adultery, into the dark heart of the Cultural Revolution. Disillusioned and middle-aged, they look back at their lives from the prosperous but soulless 1980s, wondering what has become of their dreams and ideals. Paperback: 220 PagesProduc...

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