Thursday, December 06, 2007


A few snippets of book news on Cambodia that I've caught a whiff of in recent days include another children's book by Michelle Lord (right), after the success of her first book, Little Sap and Monsieur Rodin, which was published last year. A Song For Cambodia will be out, published by Lee & Low, in March of 2008 with Lord focusing on the story of a musician who survived the killing fields, with illustrations by Shino Arihara. A tough subject for a children's book but with her talent, I'm sure the author will do it justice. Due for release by University of Hawaii Press a couple of months later, will be Annuska Derks' Khmer Women on the Move: Exploring Work and Life in Urban Cambodia - the title speaks for itself. The author, a Belgian anthropologist who worked with the Center for Advanced Studies in Phnom Penh, has conducted varying studies on Khmer women and knows her subject intimately.

Already out, published two months ago by IB Tauris, is Leslie Fielding's insider account of diplomatic meetings conducted in opium dens and dancing lessons with beautiful princesses at the Royal Palace to candid portraits of the rest of the international community of Phnom Penh, in his illuminating 280-page book Before the Killing Fields: Witness to Cambodia and the Vietnam War. A reprint by Kessinger Publishing in July crept out under my radar, entitled Norodom: King of Cambodia: A Romance of the East by Frank McGloin, a 330-page publication in their Legacy Reprint series. And finally, a little bird told me that the authors of the Lonely Planet for Cambodia guidebook are putting many kilometres on the clock doing their in-depth research for the next, 6th, edition of the traveller's bible. A mid-2008 publication is on the cards. Nick Ray, who has authored the last three editions, will be sharing the duties with a blast from the past, Daniel Robinson, who authored the first-ever edition back in the dark ages - I think it was 1992 (I will check, my copy is at home!)

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