Posted @withregram • @thommywaite Episode 96 – Rainy Day Ramen and the Cosmic Pachinko w/ Gordon Vanstone (Interview)
THOMMY WAITE'S SQUARE RECORD
@rainydayramen_cosmicpachinko is a whimsical yet enthralling novel about an outsider expat in Japan. The story is a balance of irreverent wanderings around an alien landscape and existential introspection.
@gordonvanstone is a Canadian writer who is based in Singapore. Rainy Day Ramen and the Cosmic Pachinko is his first book.
This one was lit, fam. Me and Gordo got liquored up and yarned about what took him to Japan for 8 years, expat camaraderie and competition, Japan's polite xenophobia, the similarities between our novels, how traveling changed his perspective on Canada, and his literary influences.
To watch or listen to this episode, search for ‘Thommy Waite’s Square Record’ on YouTube/your podcast app, or click the link in the @thommywaite bio.
Posted @withregram • @nurilbasri I'm delighted to share that Not a Virgin was included as a key reading on the Postcolonial Studies module for postgraduate students at SOAS University of London. Big thanks to Dr Ben Murtagh.
I'm also here to announce that the sequel is done and has found a publisher in its home country. I wish it to see the light soon and has the chance to be translated again....
“In 1826, an English merchant, Alexander Hare, brought a group of people from Malaysia and Indonesia as well as South Africa and New Guinea to an island atoll northwest of mainland Australia in the Indian Ocean,” reports The Conversation (2017). “Hare took them to the Cocos (Keeling) Islands as slaves. The Cocos Malays developed a unique culture and Malay dialect. They adopted 19th-century Scottish dancing and music. Still living on their island home, the Cocos Malays are now Australian citizens.”
The eccentric Mr Hare – as he was known to Sophia, the first wife of Singapore founder Thomas Stamford Raffles – and his Asian harem are brought vividly to life in “The Man Who Collected Women” by Nigel Barley, a work of historical fiction set in Southeast Asia.
Available from leading bookstores worldwide, including in Malaysia and Singapore.
Alexander Hare was a trader and slave-owner in the East and a friend of Thomas Stamford Raffles, Lieutenant Governor of Java and the founder of Singapore, but Hare’s chief claim to fame is as the creator of an Asian harem, including in his collection women from Java, Bali, Sumatra, Sulawesi, Borneo, the Malay Peninsula, China, India and Africa. Hare’s love of women and his assembling of a harem, initially in Borneo and then on an uninhabited atoll that would become the Cocos-Keeling Islands, made him an object of guilty male fantasies and of strident female resentments, the epitome of masculine, colonial exploitation.
‘Writing today about such a historical figure as Alexander Hare can be a fraught undertaking. Nigel Barley [anthropologist, former curator of The British Museum and author of 15 books] is clearly aware of this, and diffuses much of the potential tension with a certain satirical playfulness. Alexander Hare is eventually undone by the agency of Anna and Maria, recent South African additions to his harem … The Man Who Collected Women is a clever and highly entertaining novel ... which handles a problematic real-life historical figure deftly.’ Tim Hannigan, Asian Review of Books
Photo credit: ‘Balinese Woman, 1920’ Leiden University Digital Collection