Tuesday, 7 June 2011

A Monsoon Blows In

"This is a true story of 1930s Malaysia, of jungle operations, submarines and spies in WWII, and of the postwar Malayan Emergency, as experienced by an extraordinary man."

Days ago, out of the blue, Monsoon Books offered me books to review or feature in the media. A package from them came last Friday, but I was not informed until yesterday evening.

Malayan Spymaster: Memoirs of a Rubber Planter, Bandit Fighter and Spy is the story of Boris Hembry, a British rubber planter who joined the fight against the Japanese occupiers in World War II as an intelligence officer and later, the communist insurgents during the Emergency.

Hembry's memoirs were written for his family and not meant for publication, but they felt that his life in Malaya and his struggles deserved a much wider readership.

"We dedicate it to those expatriates of many generations whose devotion to that beautiful country and its peoples helped to lay the foundations of present-day peaceful and prosperous Malaysia," writes Hembry's son, John in the preface. Boris Hembry passed on in September 1990.

My thanks to Monsoon Books for what promises to be an interesting read, and many thanks to the family of the late Boris Hembry for their generosity in sharing his extraordinary story.


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