by Mohamed Latiff Mohamed, translated by Alfian Sa'at
Epigram Books/Paperback/140 pages/$24.90/Major bookstores
The work of Mohamed Latiff Mohamed, a Cultural Medallion recipient and multiple Singapore Literature Prize winner, translates into English with a lush, mesmerising sensibility.
A novel that is ostensibly about a man mourning the death of his wife in a car accident, The Widower was first published in Malay in 1998. It also explores the racial and political themes that were central to the author's book Confrontation, about Singapore pre-independence.
Confrontation was translated into English, also by Epigram Books, two years ago.
We Rose Up Slowly
by Jon Gresham
Math Paper Press/Paperback/188 pages/$22/Major bookstores
This collection of short stories by writer and photographer Jon Gresham includes offerings of magic realism, horror and myth.
Most memorable are The Finger, a triangle between an expat couple and their maid, as well as A Girl And A Guy In A Kijang In Kemang, in which a tale of forbidden love from ancient Java plays out in a Jakarta traffic jam. The latter story was first published in Ethos Books' 2013 anthology of retold legends, Eastern Heathens.
The Lover’s Inventory
by Cyril Wong Math Paper Press/Paperback/60pages/$16/Major bookstores
And Other Rivers
by Lee Jing-Jing
MathPaper Press/Paperback/52 pages/$16/Major bookstores
Math Paper Press brings out two spare but exciting collections from very different authors.
Eroticism and frustration power the works in Cyril Wong’s The Lover’s Inventory.
Lee Jing-Jing, known for her novel of heartland life and HDB redevelopment, If I Could Tell You (2013, Marshall Cavendish Editions), offers fluid verses inspired by everything from rainfall to rivers and memory.
Jack And Jill At Bukit Timah Hill
written by Gwen Lee, illustrated by Twisstii Epigram Books/Paperback/32pages/$14.90/Major bookstores
Architect and writer Gwen Lee puts a Singaporean twist on well-known English nursery rhymes such as Jack And Jill Went Up A Hill in this picturebook for ages three to eight.