Well, I got the first day cover that commemorates the 35th anniversary of the establishment diplomatic relations between China and Malaysia that I mentioned a couple of posts ago. Except that it's not a first day cover, it's a commemorative cover, which is a slightly different beast. I guess I should read the news article properly next time! The difference between the two is that first day covers are specially-designed envelopes stuck on with specially-designed stamps, and marked with a specially-designed postmark. A commemorative cover is a specially-designed envelope... and that's it. All in all, it's an unremarkable affair, especially if you're used to well-designed first day covers (not that Malaysian first day covers are well-designed... but I digress). Oh sure, a commemorative cover has a stamp printed right on to it but that's just like an overglorified aerogramme. Lame. On the whole, what a disappointment. I haven't been collecting first day cover
I am sure they're just drawn by the exoticism(sic) of Tan's novel. Its actually poorly edited and could have done with less description of food and the fauna/flora of Penang ad neuseum. It comes across like a mishmash of Clavell and Mishima. Writing and hiding behind a half chinese/english character and writing about he knows just shows that he's hardly stretched as a writer, much less as a novelistReplyDelete
Poorly edited? I must check again.ReplyDelete
As for exoticism... nothing wrong with that! Isn't that Asia's biggest export next to Apple computers and Nike shoes? :p
as for the food, this is the most food obsessed nation on earth (and rightly so!) so the authors are going to reflect that i thinkReplyDelete
i also think authors here feel a need to fill in background detail that western readers and readers elsewhere might not know or understand.
why is he "hiding" behind this character? seems to be a v. useful way of exploring belonging vs. dislocation
It's his first novel and he's on the Booker Longlist, so I think he's doing well enough. I think the novel reads well and the exoticism doesn't bother me. Makes Malaysians more interesting! :-) Half-English semi-Chinese, whatever lah! What comes across is how HUMAN Philip is, so who cares if he's half this and half that.ReplyDelete