A Malaysian storybook trail + 7 book events you can't miss in December


  • Books
  • Wednesday, 27 Nov 2019

The 'LiteraTur: Dongeng Si Siti Kecil' with National Laureate Prof Dr Siti Zainon Ismail takes place in KL on Dec 14. The literature tour revisits the storybook trail in Siti Zainon's 1988 book 'Dongeng Si Siti Kecil'. Photo: Filepic

The month of December features a variety of activities for book lovers, with a storybook trail in KL with a National Laureate, a vintage book market (yes, perfect for your Christmas gift ideas) and special interest art-related discussions.

Here are eight literary events around the Klang Valley to investigate:

Public Talk: Life Of Ito Hiromi – Family and Distance
Where: Books Kinokuniya KLCC, Kuala Lumpur
When: Dec 1,1pm
Author Hitomi IroAuthor Hitomi Iro

If you missed Ito Hiromi at the recent George Town Literary Festival, fret not. She is holding a public talk in KL.

In the 1970s, this renowned Japanese author arose in the Japanese writing scene, making waves with her explorations of feminism, migrant culture and shamanism. She is now one of the country's most prominent writers, and has won many prestigious Japanese literary awards. Ito has also been writing for a newspaper's life advice column for over 20 years.

During this talk in KL, Ito will share on issues such as taking long distance care of her family, and her anxiety about her children's education after living in the US for a long time.

She will also be answering life questions during a Q&A session called "Ask Hiromi Anything!" This event is free but registration through Eventbrite is required.

Facebook: The Japan Foundation, Kuala Lumpur

The Way Through The Woods: Conversations With Author
Where: Gerakbudaya Bookstore, Petaling Jaya
When: Dec 1,2pm

Author Long Litt WoonAuthor Long Litt WoonIn this session, author Long Litt Woon has a conversation with Dayaneetha de Silva of Firefly Books, about her book The Way Through The Woods: Of Mushrooms And Mourning.

The book is about how Long, an anthropologist originally from Malaysia, met her husband Eiolf while visiting Oslo, Norway, on a college trip. The two live a happy life together, but everything changes after Eiolf's untimely death at 54.

Buried in grief, Long takes a beginner's course on mushrooming (something she and Eiolf had always wanted to do together) and rekindles her zest for life.

Facebook: Gerakbudaya

PlayLah: KL Edition
Where: Improv Bistro, Wisma Lim Foo Yong, Kuala Lumpur
When: Dec 2,8pm

This dialogue with Dutch interactive design consultant Ellis Bartholomeus is for anyone interested in creating wonderful interactions or harnessing the spirit of play.

Bartholomeus has developed more than 50 games and playful interactive products on a wide spectrum of topics. She is also the author of Apply Play, a book on the art of play. She has given many talks and facilitates workshops on the value and power of play.

Facebook: Tiny Art Projects

Book Street - Collectors Edition
Where: Level 3, East Wing, Amcorp Mall, Petaling Jaya
When: Dec 6-8,10am to 6pm, free admission

The Book Street market is back with a Collectors Edition version. That means you'll find thousands of books sharing booth space with literary-related paraphernalia, including old typewriters, book cabinets, lamps and others.

The idea is to lead collectors and visitors into the old world of books. This independent three-day rare book fair is all about mobilising an independent community of vintage book sellers, and the focus will be on a wide selection of collectible and out-of-print books, rare antique maps, prints, photographs, manuscripts and antiquities, some over a century old.

A total of over 20 book vendors, including indie comics and fanzine publishers, will be participating.

If you are a lover of vintage books, the Book Street edition in Amcorp Mall, Petaling Jaya from Dec 6-8 is not to be missed. Photo: The Star/Yap Chee HongIf you are a lover of vintage books, the Book Street edition in Amcorp Mall, Petaling Jaya from Dec 6-8 is not to be missed. Photo: The Star/Yap Chee Hong

LiteraTur: Dongeng Si Siti Kecil With National Laureate Prof Dr Siti Zainon Ismail
Where: Meeting point Masjid Jamek, KL
When: Dec 14,10.30am

This literature event, presented by LiteraCity, will focus on Malaysia's 14th National Laureate Prof Dr Siti Zainon Ismail's book Dongeng Si Siti Kecil, which was a collection of poems. sketches and short stories published in 1988.

The storybook tour trail, with Siti Zainon, will encompass the nearby city areas where Siti Kecil grew up, especially in the Jalan Melayu neighbourhood. Think of it also as a 1950s-era childhood throwback for Siti Zainon.

Born in Kuala Lumpur in 1949, Siti Zainon, an alumnus of Sekolah Aminuddin Baki, Kuala Lumpur, went to Akademi Seni Rupa Indonesia in Yogyakarta, Indonesia, from 1969 to 1974 where she earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.

Siti Zainon is the second woman to receive the national literary award. This LiteraCity tour (in Bahasa Malaysia) is limited to 30 participants. Tour fees apply.

Facebook: LiteraCity

Makers Unravel: Shika Corona
Where: Malaysia Design Archive, Zhongshan Building, KL
When: Dec 14,3pm

Makers Unravel is a series of conversations where makers of design, architecture, visual arts, music, movement, craft, narratives and mash-ups share their approach, philosophy and practice of creating.

This month sees multidisciplinary artist, punk rocker and arts activist Shika Corona sharing insights into a career that has seen her work on street art with urban art collective Sembur With Style in the early days to life as a freelance artist.

On top of her personal, quirky doodles, Shika also illustrates, self-publishes, and distributes her mini magazines. She also contributes her work to projects organised by local non-governmental organizations and various social causes.

Her work has been shown in exhibitions including the Malaysia's 49th Merdeka Mural in 2010 held at the National Art Gallery, as well as the Seksualiti Merdeka festival in 2012. In 2013, Shika participated in the Singapore Biennale.

Facebook: Malaysian Design Archive

Up Close And Personal With Tash Aw
Where: Lit Books, Petaling Jaya
When: Dec 14,4pm

London-based award-winning author Tash Aw is back in Malaysia this month.

Lit Books founder Fong Min Hun sits down with him for a discussion about his latest book, We, The Survivors, which tells the story of Ah Hock, an ordinary man who becomes driven towards causing an unimaginable act of violence.

Aw is the author of three acclaimed novels: The Harmony Silk Factory (2005), Map Of The Invisible World (2009) and Five Star Billionaire (2013). His novels have twice been longlisted for the Man Booker prize and been translated into 23 languages.

Tickets are RM10, which can be used as a rebate for any purchase at the venue on that day.

Facebook: Lit Books

Get up close and personal with author Tash Aw at Lit Books this Dec 14. Photo: FilepicGet up close and personal with author Tash Aw at Lit Books this Dec 14. Photo: Filepic

Book Talk: An 'Orientalist From Within'? - Manuel Of Malacca
Where: Kok Far Tea, Zhongshan Building, Kuala Lumpur
When: Dec 17,8pm

Cartographer Manuel Godinho de Eredia, the son of an European father and a Malay (or Bugis) mother, lived in the Portuguese state of India in the 17th century. Eredia's historical-geographical works draw from both Western and Asian influences.

This talk examines Eredia's visual and written works, and addresses questions such as: how did one characterise Eredia? Who was he writing and creating for, and how did he describe his images to them?

The speaker is Chase Caldwell Smith, co-host of the Global History Podcast. The talk is co-organised by Visual Art Program, Cultural Centre, Universiti of Malaya and Malaysia Design Archive.

Facebook: Malaysian Design Archive

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