Writer . Editor . Author
In 2011 when I first arrived in Singapore, I read close to 30 novels thanks to my non-existent social life. I spent most of my Saturdays (rain or shine) holed up in my room in Queenstown devouring a fictional world.
Paperback after paperback was purchased mostly from Sultana Book Store, my favourite second-hand bookstore in Singapore. As soon as I finished with a batch, I shipped them back to my hometown in Penang, which is where I archive my items.
Last year, I’m glad to say that I cut this down to just a little over 20 books. In bold are the books that were my highlights:
Murder on the Orient Express was my first Agatha Christie novel ever. It was so gripping that I went into work 30 minutes late because I was sat in a cafe trying to finish the last 15 pages. I just had to know the ending or I couldn’t begin my day. Consumer Detox is another book I enjoyed, mostly because I already share most of Mark Powley’s values on consumerism, freedom of choice, downsizing and not maximising your life because you are content with how much you already have.
Lastly, I recommend Patricia Highsmith, one of my all-time favourite authors, simply because she can make you like a monster of a man like Tom Ripley. I love her detailed descriptions of Ripley’s home in Belle Ombre, the French food his servant Mme Annette serves, and the little mundane details like the cup of coffee he has every morning at eight and his purchase of a silk pyjama. Her skill is that she can make you empathise with the main character and covet his life, to the extent that you forget who he truly is at the core.