Brunei Memories

Yesterday, the printers called and told me to collect the second batch of books and everything else will be in the remaining third batch. So today, I will be spending my after office hours getting 500 copies of my book entitled "The Golden Warisan Volume 2" into the bookshops. I have to send the books to the bookshops' store rooms. Since my first book, nowadays I know where Best Eastern and Bismi hide their stocks. So hopefully by Thursday or latest Friday, "The Golden Warisan Volume 2" will be available at all the Best Eastern and Bismi bookshops throughout the country.

I was reading the news about my colleague, the PS at PMO launching Malai Yunos cartoon book and I was wondering whether I should do a proper launch. But my first book was never launched properly and it sold itself out and I had to do a reprint, so I guess the second one should do okay, hopefully. Anyway, each book retails for $15 and you get 52 articles for that price.


However, today I want to talk about another book which I discovered and purchased recently for the cost of 10 of my books. The book is not that old (published in 1988) but unfortunately no longer available and that is why I had to pay an arm and a leg for it.

Why is this book useful? In the 19th century, the British were spending a lot of their time in Brunei including interfering in Brunei's affairs - Limbang, Labuan etc. The British back home in England always wanted to know about happenings on this side of the world. They had their share holdings in the the ships traveling and trading here etc.

The news that the readers wanted came out on Illustrated London News. The newspaper printed many stories about Brunei, Sarawak and Sabah throughout the 19th century and the early 20th century. The news were accompanied by sketches (photography was in its infancy and films were invented by Kodak Eastman in 1895) and a great many of Brunei's old scenes were actually first printed and shown on this newspaper.

The book is a compilation of all the stories and sketches and old photographs from the Illustrated London News throughout the 19th Century. There are many sketches about Brunei and I would love to bring those sketches to this blog in the future.

In the meantime you can enjoy the cover of the book. The cover is a scene of the British ships Vixen, Pluto and Nemesis at anchor in Brunei harbour in August 1845. The photograph was courtesy of Brigadier Cree and the trustees of the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, England.


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