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Hooray! the National Day is just around the corner!
and Double Hooray! it’s on Tuesday so for those of us who can (Yes We Can!) it can be a long weekend! (Yes We Can!)
To get you into the National Day mood (apart from the red & white outfit and the sticker tatoo), we’ve put together a list of books by Singaporeans and about Singapore.
Whether you’ll be enjoying the holiday at home or travelling (especially if you’re travelling!), you can take a piece of Singapore with you, wherever you are. Happy reading!
By Jeremy Tiang
What better book is there for your National Day weekend than a book that has “National Day” in its title? And we can guarantee you – this book is not simply all title. Featuring eleven short stories, the book revolves around the lives of a few Singaporeans, whose paths end up intertwining in different, poignant and even funny ways. The book questions what it means to be Singaporean, something we ought to be thinking about, especially with National Day just around the corner.
by David Leo
Set in the 1950s, Cherry Days is tale of growing up in “old” Singapore, a time when many people still lived in kampongs. The story follows Skinny, who experiences first hand the changes in the social and urban landscape of Singapore, amidst adjusting himself to the many changes within his own family. Exemplifying community spirit, friendship and family, the book is a sentimental, yet sharp, story of Singapore’s growth and an excellent read.
by Verena Tay
In this anthology, eleven stories bring to life the many neighbourhoods of Singapore. Each story concerns a particular neighbourhood and is written by an author who has once lived there. Infused with familiarity and authenticity, the book considers the experiences of its characters and their experiences with space and memory. A sharp and apt presentation of our neighbourhoods and people, Balik Kampung 2A is well-rounded collection of stories.
by Sebastian Sim
Sebastian Sim’s novel concerns Gimme Lao, the first child born on the day of Singapore’s independence, who is then cheated of the honour by a vindictive nurse. The story follows Gimme Lao’s life, ambitions and family. Thoughtful, provocative and funny, this book brings to life the past five decades of Singapore’s history, allowing us to reflect on the ways Singapore has changed.
by Edwin Thumboo
Featuring poems like “lion heart” by Amanda Chong, “Tanah Merah” by Oliver Seet and “Solat” by Aaron Maniam, this collection consists of over a hundred poems, largely by Singaporeans. For those who have always been daunted by poetry, this is an easy collection to start with – the large number of poems definitely guarantees that there’s going to be at least a few you’ll like. In the spirit of National Day, why not take a plunge into something unfamiliar, and support the local literary scene?
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ARTICLE BY XIN YI WANG