It is with inordinate pride I announce the completion of my first novel in Bahasa Melayu, Jalan Retak by A. Samad Said. Written for middle-school students, Jalan Retak is a 70-page portrait of a widower who tries to emotionally support two grandchildren coping with a broken home. The widower counsels his son but without obvious results, and […]
Category Archives: Briefly
Exit West by Mohsin Hamid: Review
A meditation on migration of every sort. As a muslim migrant who has chosen life outside The West I feel like Hamid is chronicling the particular world I inhabit more than any other writer I can name. The major story arc is a refugee couple from a country that could be anywhere succumbing to war, […]
A twitter-essay on Beras Perang, unpolished, unbleached, lightly milled local long grain rice.
Beras perang tampi di nyiru,
Tumpah melukut merata-rata.
Haiwan yang garang lagi diburu,
Siapa takut semut melata?
Review: Islam and the Destiny of Man
The sensitivity and respect he shows the Christian outlook is a great example to other converts in how to come to grips with their origins. Who we were is part of who we are, and being comfortable in yourself means coming to terms with that.
Review: Salonica, City of Ghosts
“They all claimed the city for themselves in God’s name. But is it not said: Where God is, there is everything?” Nearly five hundred years of history for a city I had never heard of in a land I knew next to nothing about could have been overwhelming, but the book is so well-written and […]
You can get used to anything
The hazy weather Kuching had the last few days made me think of an old song from my childhood. It’s by Fred Small, and it goes like this: YOU CAN GET USED Fred Small, 1976 Found on Home-Style Stone Soup: The Streetwax Recording Collective When I was a kid takin’ biology, I learned about man’s […]
The Years of Rice and Salt
An alternative history where all the Europeans die in the Black Death and the great civilizations of the world are Islam and China. Such an exciting premise. We follow three kindred souls through group reincarnations era after era. The way their essential inclinations and human potentials are encouraged or limited by the circumstances fate delivers […]
Sheep, Honey and Lots of Jews
A review of The Jews of Khazaria by Kevin Alan Brook Soon after the Persian Empire fell to the Companions of Prophet Muhammad (saws), the armies of the Caliphate reached to the Door of Doors, the fortress of Durbent which closes the narrow gap between the Caucasus Mountains and the Caspian Sea, the fortress believed […]