NEW from MPH Publishing
Eight Jewels of the Phoenix (2009)
By Tutu Dutta-Yean
Eight Jewels of the Phoenix brings together eight legends and folk tales from the countries around the Asia-Pacific Rim. The tales in this collection are cultural icons, retold and reinterpreted in many forms through the ages. Just like the Phoenix, they are fierce, full of colour, magic and adventure, celebrating the richness and diversity of the cultures of Asia. For those unfamiliar with these cultures, the book will be a journey of discovery. Readers will find universal themes: the reversal of fortune, quest for love—possible and impossible, sacrifice for the greater good and even the charming story of a Malay Cinderella. The Phoenix sometimes makes an appearance in these stories in various guises. The cultures covered in this book include China, India, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, North America and Thailand. The author’s black-and-white illustrations bring a fresh perspective to the stories. These are timeless tales that will appeal to both young and old alike.
OCTOBER 2009 / 144pp / Softcover / 9789675222320
Eight Fortunes of the Qilin (2009)
By Tutu Dutta-Yean
Eight Fortunes of the Qilin brings together eight legends and folk tales from countries around the Asia-Pacific Rim. Each story in the collection is rooted in the culture of its people. It is also a window to the past as some of these cultures may no longer exist or are undergoing rapid transformation. As the fabled Qilin represents compassion, wisdom and respect for nature and life, these qualities are echoed in the stories. Nature, whether in the form of a mighty river, a little cricket or snail, plays a prominent role in these enthralling tales. It is also the thread that binds all these elements together. Humans, spirits and deities cross paths, and unseen worlds collide. The countries brought to life in this collection include Borneo, Central America, China, India, Indonesia, Korea, Philippines and Vietnam. Accompanying the rich tales are black-and-white illustrations by the author to bring a fresh perspective to the stories. These are timeless tales that will appeal to both young and old alike.
OCTOBER 2009 / 128pp / Softcover / 9789675222313
Tropical Affairs (2009)
By Robert Raymer
Robert Raymer has had the pleasure of chasing after a madwoman who stuffed his letter down her blouse, being trapped by a monitor lizard inside his own house, and being frisked by three men wearing pincushions. He’s had close encounters with several Emmy- and Oscar-winning directors and actresses, including Bruce Beresford, John Boorman, Glenn Close, Catherine Deneuve, and Jodie Foster. He’s been arm-twisted into playing Santa Claus, misled on a night hike, and stood up on Valentine’s Day! He’s held a live crocodile in his arms and survived two operations with two of his babies (who naturally got all the attention). He’s been an extra in five movie scenes, written four books, fathered three boys, taught at two universities, and has, on more than one occasion, been completely out of luck! In Tropical Affairs, a collection of creative nonfiction, the author gives a lush, multi-layered rendition of the Malaysian way of life, colored and influenced by his experiences living in Malaysia for over 20 years.
NOVEMBER 2009 / 320pp / Softcover / 9789675222375
Never Been Better (2009)
By O Thiam Chin
In this new collection of stories, O Thiam Chin has created a series of unforgettable, deeply-affecting portraits of individuals whose intersections of loves and losses mark the dawn of awareness and longing in their lives. Never Been Better illustrates his literary versatility in his assortment of characters who occupy a world of ambivalence and false optimism, yet still persist in trudging on with strength and resilience. From free-spirited teenage runaways and a lonely child who collects dead animals to hidden family secrets and migrant workers who live squalid lives far away from home, these eclectic stories are heartbreaking, haunting and rendered with a touch of grace, compassion and poignancy.
DECEMBER 2009 / 284pp / Softcover / 9789675222467
By Ellen Whyte
Ever wondered what a pyrrhic victory is? Been curious if there is a connection between real white elephants and expensive properties that don’t make money? Can’t figure out what a banshee is and why it screams? If you’ve always wanted to know where your favourite expressions come from or are flummoxed by those you haven’t heard of before, this book is for you. ‘Logomania,’ which means ‘being crazy about words,’ is derived from the Greek roots, log, meaning ‘word,’ and mainesthai, meaning ‘mad.’ It’s a made-up word, so it’s not in the dictionary yet! Logomania delves into the meaning and history of over 400 English phrases from ‘a babe in the woods’ to ‘you reap what you sow.’ Arranged by chapters so you can check out phrases linked by common imagery, and indexed so you can find the phrase you want quickly, this little reference is chock-full of information. Each entry also comes with an example so you can see how the expression is used.
JANUARY 2010 / 328pp / Softcover / 9789675222474