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So far Pete @ Blacksmith has created 289 blog entries.
15 January 2021

A new book of true stories from Paul French: Destination Peking

2021-01-15T20:02:16+08:00January 15th, 2021|china, new books|0 Comments

Bestselling author Paul French returns to the Chinese capital in Destination Peking to tell 18 true stories of fascinating people who visited the city in the first half of the 20th century. From the ultra-wealthy Woolworths heiress Barbara Hutton and her husband the Russian emigré Prince Mdivani, to the poor “American girl” Mona Monteith who worked in the city as [...]

18 December 2020

Published today – Women, Crime and the Courts: Hong Kong 1841-1941

2020-12-18T17:22:08+08:00December 18th, 2020|hong kong, new books|0 Comments

Kwan Lai-chun was sick of being made to feel second-class by her husband’s concubine; sick of her mother-in-law’s endless carping about the money she spent; sick of the whole family. Late one sticky, humid night, something snapped in her – and she grabbed the meat chopper. Within minutes, three people were dead: the concubine with over 70 gashes, many of [...]

18 December 2020

Watch this video book talk from Yunnan by author Colin Flahive

2020-12-18T13:22:25+08:00December 18th, 2020|authors, china|0 Comments

This year has been the age of book launches by Zoom! Click the video below to watch a book talk from Salvador's Coffee House, Kunming, by Colin Flahive. Flahive is the author of Great Leaps: Finding home in a changing China. In the book, and in this talk, he explains how he discovered China as a backpacker in his early [...]

17 December 2020

Blast from the past, and repeating history: the first books we published

2020-12-16T23:38:59+08:00December 17th, 2020|hong kong, publishing|0 Comments

I was making space in the storeroom this week for new books coming in, and I pulled a box down from the top rack of shelving. What a surprise. It contained a few copies of the first two books we ever published, back in 2002 and 2003. My first thought was that I hadn't seen these for ages, and didn't [...]

7 December 2020

Technology upgrade at Blacksmith Books

2020-12-07T19:25:17+08:00December 7th, 2020|publishing|0 Comments

The Blacksmith Books delivery trolley is a valued member of the team. Bought from a hardware shop in Sai Ying Pun for HK$180 more than two decades ago, it has given daily service ever since, carrying boxes full of books along the street to the post office and never complaining. Last week, though, the trolley had an altercation with a [...]

18 November 2020

FCC lunch and book conversation: ‘The Rise and Fall of the Hang Seng Index’ by Jake van der Kamp

2020-11-17T23:59:56+08:00November 18th, 2020|publishing|0 Comments

LUNCH TALK Book Conversation: ‘The Rise and Fall of the Hang Seng Index’     SPEAKER Jake van der Kamp Author     Thursday, November 19, 2020 12:30pm for 12:45pm – Lunch 1:10pm – Address First Floor, FCC 2 Lower Albert Road Central, Hong Kong   Every adult human being is an investment expert: You do it every day when [...]

9 November 2020

Four Shanghai podcasts from Paul French on RTHK3 this week

2020-11-11T21:34:05+08:00November 9th, 2020|book excerpt|0 Comments

To celebrate this year’s Hong Kong International Literary Festival, the Morning Brew show with Phil Whelan on RTHK Radio 3 will be broadcasting four more excerpts from Paul French’s book Destination Shanghai, read by the author... Monday 9/11 - 11.40am - Florence Broadhurst Teaches Shanghai to Dance (1926) Tuesday 10/11 - 11.40am - Langston Hughes’s Shanghai Sojourn (1935) Wednesday 11/11 [...]

31 August 2020

Video: Nicholas Kitto explains his new book, “Trading Places” – a photographic journey through China’s former treaty ports

2020-08-29T20:48:18+08:00August 31st, 2020|authors, new books, publishing|0 Comments

Watch this video of Nicholas Kitto, author of the new Trading Places, a Photographic Journey Through China’s Former Treaty Ports, talking about his experiences which culminated in the publication of his book.   The presentation, to members of the Royal Asiatic Society Hong Kong, explains how Nick became interested in China's Treaty Port era -- it started with his father [...]

16 July 2020

New book: Strangers on the Praia, by Paul French

2020-07-16T22:15:27+08:00July 16th, 2020|new books|0 Comments

Based on true stories and new research, Paul French weaves together the stories of those Jewish refugees who moved on from wartime Shanghai to seek a possible route to freedom via the Portuguese colony of Macao – “the Casablanca of the Orient”. The delicately balanced neutral enclave became their wartime home, amid Nazi and Japanese spies, escaped Allied prisoners from [...]

3 June 2020

Webtalk by Paul French, June 3, 7pm: Strangers on the Praia, Macau in World War II

2020-06-03T02:24:41+08:00June 3rd, 2020|authors, events|0 Comments

In this talk for the Royal Geographical Society Hong Kong, well-known China historian, raconteur and author Paul French talks of Macau during World War II. Based on true stories and new research, he attempts to weave together the stories of those Jewish refugees who in the war moved on from their temporary haven of Shanghai. Many sought a possible route [...]

19 May 2020

New book: The Rise and Fall of the Hang Seng Index, by Jake van der Kamp

2020-05-18T22:31:01+08:00May 19th, 2020|new books|0 Comments

"Every adult human being is an investment expert. Life is an investment exercise and you are your own best investment adviser.” Jake van der Kamp is a native of the Netherlands, a citizen of Canada and a resident of Hong Kong. In his earlier years in Hong Kong he worked as an investment analyst and research director for Sun Hung [...]

1 April 2020

New book: Trading Places, a photographic journey through China’s former treaty ports

2020-04-01T17:07:58+08:00April 1st, 2020|china, new books|0 Comments

China’s treaty ports were cities along its coast and on major rivers which were forcibly opened to foreign trade by the Western powers, starting from the early 19th century. The treaty port era extended from then until 1943, and during this time foreigners had a significant presence in China. This new book contains more than 700 photographs of many buildings [...]

2 March 2020

Book excerpt: Confessions of a Hong Kong Naturalist

2020-03-01T19:48:51+08:00March 2nd, 2020|book excerpt, hong kong|0 Comments

Confessions of a Hong Kong Naturalist is a natural history memoir, tracing the journey from novice to expert of aspiring naturalist Graham Reels as he follows a trail of discovery into the miraculously fascinating and diverse world of Hong Kong’s wildlife. Read this excerpt from his book. It is taken from Chapter 9, Far-flung Shores. Graham says: “The background is [...]

21 February 2020

New book: The Evergreen Tea House, a Hong Kong novel

2020-02-19T23:34:44+08:00February 21st, 2020|hong kong, new books|0 Comments

David Wong started his working life as a dishwasher in a Chinese restaurant before becoming a teacher, colonial bureaucrat, businessman, and a writer of short stories and novels. In the wake of the Hong Kong protests, memories of the colonial past are fading. This new edition of David T. K. Wong’s sweeping historical novel brings the past vividly [...]

20 February 2020

Video: “Spatial Cemetery” is a visual journey beneath the surface of hidden Hong Kong

2020-02-19T23:10:33+08:00February 20th, 2020|hong kong, media attention, new books|0 Comments

"Urbex" is shorthand for "urban exploration", and HK Urbex are a group of anonymous, adrenaline-fuelled explorers who investigate the hidden, abandoned and forgotten corners of Hong Kong. Their first book is out now. "HK Urbex is an underground collective that documents deserted, off-limits spaces, its photographers protecting their identities with hats, hoods, masks and pseudonyms," says the South China Morning [...]

21 October 2019

Join us at Kai-Yin Lo’s book launch on Saturday, Oct 26

2019-10-22T00:06:52+08:00October 21st, 2019|events, hong kong, new books|0 Comments

Designing a Life tells the inspiring story of Kai-Yin Lo, a determined Hong Kong woman born to a wealthy family who had to build her own future following an abrupt change in the family’s fortunes. “Kai-Yin is a polymath and a phenomenon, having seamlessly juggled an analytical career as a scholar, historian, teacher and editor, with the artistic and imaginative [...]

16 October 2019

Meet Gill Shaddick, author of The Hong Kong Letters, on October 19

2019-10-16T21:44:42+08:00October 16th, 2019|authors, events, hong kong|0 Comments

Gill Shaddick is the author of The Hong Kong Letters, her memoir of an eventful two years working at an ad agency in Hong Kong in the late 1960s. Among other things, her yacht was seized by Chinese militia, and she was held incommunicado, after she unwittingly strayed into PRC waters at the height of China's Cultural Revolution. Drop by [...]