• Wordjazz for Stevie: How a profoundly handicapped girl gave her father the gifts of pain and love

    HK$108.00
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    by Jonathan Chamberlain In 1986, Jonathan Chamberlain and his wife Bernadette had their first child, Stevie, a daughter. Stevie was immediately diagnosed with Down's syndrome. A few months later it became clear that she had a serious heart defect that required a `hole in the heart' operation. Something went wrong during the operation and Stevie suffered a momentary lack of oxygen that left her severely brain-damaged. For the remaining seven and a half years of her life she was blind, epileptic and unable to sit, let alone walk. She was profoundly handicapped. Wordjazz for Stevie is the story of Jonathan's life with Stevie and the deeply beneficial impact she had on his life. It is a story of great love. It is also the story of how this almost overwhelming surge of loving energy led Jonathan to found first the Hong Kong Down Syndrome Association, and then later another charity to take into China the same idea that the key to supporting children like Stevie is to support their parents - and to see the problem as one involving the whole family. The story that Jonathan tells is made even more poignant by the fact that it deals also with his wife's unsuccessful battle with cancer. In the end Jonathan is left to bring up his son Patrick as a single father. This is a short book but intense and deeply moving. "This may be the most moving story you will ever read," said Britain's Sunday Telegraph. Look inside this book Click on the following link to view sample pages from Wordjazz for Stevie. You will need a pdf reader to view this excerpt. Pages 7-35
  • The Crocodile who Wanted to be Famous

    HK$100.00
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    Illustrated by Mariko Jesse, translated by Liang Yue

    Published by Sixth Finger Press, distributed by Blacksmith Books

    A television-loving crocodile named Crafty swims from his riverside village to find fame in the big city. His arrival is front-page news all around the world! But once there, he begins to question what he really wants.

    Inspired by the real-life saltwater crocodile that visited Hong Kong, The Crocodile who Wanted to be Famous blends fact, fiction and fable – a genuine classic in the making.

  • Don’t Joke on the Stairs: How I learnt to navigate China by breaking most of the rules

    HK$128.00
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    China – what’s not to love?

    Join longtime Hong Kong resident and Cantonese fundamentalist Cecilie Gamst Berg as she ploughs through the non-stop surreal-fest that is today’s China, stopping occasionally to ruminate about the travails of trying to make Cantonese a world language, and how the Chinese have invented a new English: Manglish.

    In this book you’ll find answers to everything you wanted to know about China, such as:

    • What does “the slippery are very crafty” really mean?
    • What’s the etiquette for hitch-hiking in really small cars?
    • What’s the best way to gatecrash a Ketamine party?
    • Indeed, what is modern party etiquette in China? And:
    • How do you win a fist-fight with a hotel security guard?

    Travelling by horse, train and sleeper bus from the deserts of Xinjiang, across the mountains of Tibet and Sichuan to the water buffalo fields of Hong Kong, Cecilie shows you how China is not only the most happening place on Earth, but also the most fun.

    Look inside this book
    Click on this link to view sample pages from Don't Joke on the Stairs. You will need a pdf reader to view this excerpt.

    Smile Comes Before a Fall

  • Out of stock

    No Minister & No, Minister: The True Story of HarbourFest

    HK$125.00
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    In the depths of the 2003 SARS crisis, Mike Rowse (盧維思), a career Hong Kong civil servant, was handed the poisoned chalice of HarbourFest – intended to be (and which in many ways was) a psychological and commercial shot in the arm. Politics, as it often does, took precedence over sense, and Rowse was scapegoated for the perceived failings of this attempt to pull off a world-class entertainment festival in only three months.

    Rowse endured disciplinary hearings and ended up taking the Hong Kong Government to court. He won.

    This true story of HarbourFest is not just an insider’s account of the workings of the Hong Kong Government; it is also a thoughtful treatise on the drawbacks of the Ministerial Accountability System, a system which failed HarbourFest and Rowse, there being No Minister who ever took responsibility.

  • Wanderings in China: Hong Kong and Canton, Christmas and New Year, 1878/1879

    HK$90.00
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    By Constance Gordon-Cumming, introduced and annotated by Paul French
     
    No. 2 in the China Revisited series
     
    Inveterate Victorian traveller and prolific artist Constance Gordon-Cumming, born in Glasgow in 1837, roamed far and wide from the Scottish Highlands to the American West; the islands of Hawaii to southern China. Even among her many adventures, her 1878/1879 trip to Hong Kong was momentous. Gordon-Cumming arrived just before Christmas 1878 to inadvertently witness the terrible “Great Fire” of Hong Kong that swept devastatingly through the Central and Mid-Levels districts.
     
    She then moved on to explorations of the streets, temples and Chinese New Year festivities in Canton (Guangzhou). Her detailed descriptions of the teeming streets of the city’s commercial districts and New Year temple fairs contrast with her temporary residence in the relative calm of the foreign enclave on Shamian Island. Venturing out of the city on expeditions, Gordon-Cumming gives us perhaps one of the most complete descriptions of the now long-gone market gardens of Fa-tee with the famed nurseries that cultivated a bewildering variety of flowers and ornamental trees.

    Finally Gordon-Cumming returns to Hong Kong to observe the annual "Derby Day" races at Happy Valley in February 1879, a major event on Hong Kong’s Victorian-era social calendar. Gordon-Cumming is at one and the same time that rare travel writer who, while plunging into the throngs and crowds, manages to observe the minutiae of life around her.

    “The flames rapidly gained the mastery, suddenly bursting from fresh houses here and there, where least suspected, and spreading from street to street. That night we stood watching this appallingly magnificent scene – the flames rising and falling, leaping and dancing, now bursting from some fresh house, shooting up in tongues of fire, now rolling in dense volumes of black smoke.”

     

  • Out of stock

    CHINA: Portrait of a People

    HK$208.00
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    with foreword by Anchee Min and epilogue by Mian Mian

    The Beijing Olympics focused the world's eyes on China. But despite increased tourism and rampant foreign investment, the cultural distance between China and the West remains as vast as the oceans that separate them. The Middle Kingdom is still relatively unknown by Westerners.

    China is in fact made up of 33 distinct regions populated by 56 ethnic groups – and American photojournalist Tom Carter has visited them all. This little book is a visual tribute to the People's Republic of China, with an ardent emphasis on the People.

    Look inside this book
    Click on the links below to see sample pages from CHINA: Portrait of a People. You will need a pdf reader to view these excerpts.

    Gansu  Hainan

  • Hong Kong On Air

    HK$98.00
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    As the Hong Kong handover boom fizzles into the Asian economic bust, a young American couple's marriage and careers tumble into a maze of television news, betrayal, high finance, and cheap lingerie.

    TV news veteran Muhammad Cohen's engaging, often hilarious novel captures the mood ahead of the July 1997 handover when Hong Kong reigned as the centre of the universe, a multicultural melting pot bubbling with pure gold. As the Asian crisis abruptly ends the party, mainland China emerges, eclipsing Hong Kong. For everyone whose job or business falls under China's lengthening economic shadow, Hong Kong On Air presents a fresh angle on how it all began. For media watchers, Hong Kong On Air broadcasts the backstage secrets of television news the way The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier & Clay illustrated the dark side of comic books.

    For newspaper reporter turned TV producer Laura Wellesley, the morning show at Franklin Global Networks Asia means going to bed before dark and swallowing the first rule of broadcast news: the anchor is always right, especially when it's American-born Chinese egomaniac Deng Jiang Mao. The station's fortunes and Laura's outlook improve with the arrival of Peter Franklin, the 28-year-old son of FGN's billionaire founder. But Franklin's eye falls on mainland-born graphics drone Pussy, Laura's control room nemesis, and a butterfly emerges from the web he spins.

    For Laura's husband Jeff Golden, the production line for his Golden Beauties lingerie runs through a cagey mother minding their stores on Long Island, cookie tins stuffed with cash smuggled over the border, and hot tubs in Hong Kong's Jewish Community Club and mainland brothels. Cut out of his own multi-million dollar deal, Jeff's consolation prize is Yogi, a Japanese banker with a yen for "Jew food" and men raised on it.

    During Hong Kong's pre-handover boom, FGN Asia becomes a hit, a star is born, and mistakes are easy to overlook. But the economic crisis ripens relationships for treachery, creates opportunities for revenge, and moves China centre stage, triggering a great leap forward for some, a long march to failure for others.

  • Out of stock

    Thirty-six Views of Lion Rock

    HK$350.00
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    by Romain Jacquet-Lagrèze, published by Blue Lotus Editions

    Lion Rock is not just any mountain. It’s Hong Kong’s most famous peak, laden with symbolism and meanings that are evolving over time. Inspired by Hokusai’s important woodblock series “Thirty-six Views of Mount Fuji” which was created in 1830, Romain set out to capture Hong Kong’s famous peak in a similar yet contemporary fashion, in order to express the many faces of this legendary mountain top.

    Lion Rock is featured in each of the photos, some in the far distance obscured by high-rise buildings, traffic or bustling markets. In other images, it is more prominent, far removed from the urban jungle, oozing peace and tranquility. Some photos are shot at the break of day, others during the blue moment at dusk. In short, Thirty-six Views of Lion Rock reads like a letter to the mountain that Hongkongers know and love so well.

  • Forty Nights (Eating Smoke #2)

    HK$118.00
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    The stand-alone sequel to the international bestseller Eating Smoke

    Former commando Chris Thrall returned from a year in Hong Kong suffering severe psychosis from crystal meth addiction. The medical profession said recovery was unlikely and recommended admitting him to a psychiatric hospital.

    There’s nothing wrong with me!”

    Chris refused all intervention and his life descended into a chaotic cycle of drug use that almost killed him... until salvation came in a surprising form.

    In this long-awaited follow-up to Eating Smoke, Chris tells a harrowing yet refreshing and often hilarious account of addiction and one gutsy journey to recovery.

    "After the harrowing events in Eating Smoke, if you thought Chris Thrall departed Kai Tak bound for a life of cream teas and Little England 'normality'... then you've likely not experienced the depravity and horror of drug addiction. In Forty Nights, Chris continues to confront his demons with his usual engaging honesty, side-splitting Royal Marine humour and storytelling at its finest." – Phil Whelan, RTHK

  • Designing a Life: A Cross-Cultural Journey

    HK$148.00
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    Designing a Life tells the inspiring story of Kai-Yin Lo, a determined woman born to a wealthy Hong Kong family who had to build her own future following an abrupt change in the family's fortunes. After a first job at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel in Hong Kong, she made her way to Time Inc. in New York to establish a new life.

    Encouraged by her first collection being accepted by Cartier New York, she employed talent, innovation and determination to become a designer of international renown, respected as an ambassador for cross-cultural exchange in art, design and thought.

    “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 flair of an amazing jewellery, accessory designer and ceramic artist.” – Thomas Heatherwick, Founder, Heatherwick Studio, London

    “In her role as Visiting Professor of the University of the Arts London, Kai-Yin Lo has done very valuable work as an effective contributor and ambassador, promoting understanding and application of cross-culture.” – Professor Jeremy Till, Head, Central Saint Martins, Pro Vice-Chancellor, University of the Arts London

    “Never ceasing to learn and create, Kai-Yin has proven herself to be an outstanding artistic and intellectual entrepreneur who blends harmoniously the aesthetic and the practical. The Asia Society on both sides of the Pacific has benefited from her generosity of spirit and cultural expressions.” – Ronnie C. Chan, Chairman, Asia Society Hong Kong Center

    “Kai-Yin Lo is a creative tour de force whose jewelry designs re-interpreting Chinese traditional design principles were at the forefront of a reappraisal of traditional Chinese culture. She also seeks to share her interests with others through the philanthropic support of dialogues and talks that foster an understanding of new issues in Asian culture. These have included some of the most important cultural leaders of our time, such as Xu Bing, Tan Dun, and Shen Wei.” – Melissa Chiu, Director, Hirshhorn Museum, Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.

  • Out of stock

    Sketches of Soho

    HK$188.00
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    In this full-colour book illustrating life in the colourful area south of Hollywood Road, Hong Kong, Lorette Roberts paints the town red – and orange, and yellow, and green, and blue… 

    There is a centre foldout of the rainbow-hued Staunton Street restaurants; elsewhere you will find the crimsons and pinks of tiny boutiques and musicians playing live in a purple bar. And those Soho-ites – from uniform in their working clothes to bright and exotic in their street party costumes – they are all there. You might even see yourself! 

    Yet there is more: the reds and golds of the temple and lantern shops, the muted ochres and turquoises of the old shophouses, the green trees and busy street market in vivid colour and, last but not least, the silver of the Mid-Levels Escalator which leads us to this vibrant district.

    A fold-out map at the back of the book will guide you through the less familiar streets. And don't forget to check out the connections between each page and find the ubiquitous snails. 

    Part of a series of best-selling books by this well-known artist, Sketches of Soho is the perfect gift item for residents and visitors alike.

  • Roving Through Southern China: An American’s Explorations of Hong Kong, Macao and Canton in the early 1920s

    HK$90.00
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    By Harry Franck, introduced and annotated by Paul French
     
    No. 4 in the China Revisited series
     
    In the 1920s the American travel writer Harry A Franck was known to readers as the “Prince of Vagabonds”. His wanderings were family affairs and he arrived in southern China in 1923 with his wife, their two young children and his mother. Franck always claimed that his travel plans were random, subject to chance encounters and whatever caught his eye.
     
    He arrives in a Hong Kong which is building modern department stores and large houses while labourers sleep on straw mats beside the harbour. In Macao he visits temples, ancient forts and, of course, casinos. And then to Canton (Guangzhou), a city in flux where new buildings are transforming the waterfront, the ancient city walls are being demolished, and the traditional rookeries of small lanes are being replaced by wide asphalt roads as the city rapidly modernises. Franck also provides us with a highly detailed description of Shamian Island a year after the tumultuous strikes and boycotts that meant naval gunboats and barbed wire still protected the small foreign enclave.
  • Remembering Bruce Lee: And Jon Benn’s Other Adventures

    HK$138.00
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    “Kung Fu?” The Big Boss Loves Adventure

    Even four decades after the passing of Asian martial-arts superstar Bruce Lee (1940-73), his achievements still attract adoration from millions of movie fans. The biggest fan of all may be Jon Benn, who befriended the high-kicking hero while playing “the Big Boss”, a villain in Lee’s acclaimed 1972 movie The Way of the Dragon.

    In Remembering Bruce Lee, a tell-tale autobiography, Jon reminisces fondly about his experiences with Lee and a lifetime of other adventures. From facing Lee’s fists of fury to riding in a cowboy posse, from almost starting the Third World War to a nude scene with sex symbol Bo Derek, much has happened to Jon for the sake of appearing in movies.

    But that’s not all. From exploring ancient Mexican temples and falling into a volcano to eavesdropping on communists in Cold War Europe, from doing business with former Philippines dictator Ferdinand Marcos to girls-in-hot-pants waving Passports to Pleasure, one heck of a lot has happened to Jon away from the cameras too.

    Look inside this book
    Click on the link to read pages from Remembering Bruce Lee. You will need a pdf reader to view these excerpts. 

    Contents & Introduction

     

  • Chinese Ghosts Revisited: A Study of Paranormal Beliefs and Experiences

    HK$138.00
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    Do the Hong Kong Chinese experience ghosts, hauntings, spirit mediumship, ESP and other paranormal phenomena just like people in the West? Or is their culture so different that the ghost accounts in this book will seem bizarre to anyone else?

    This classic presentation of cases is based on 3,600 interviews, questionnaires and observations in Hong Kong in 1980/81, updated by recent materials over 30 years later. Interestingly, in spite of clear influences from ancestor worship and Confucian/Taoist/Buddhist culture, parapsychological theories of apparitions from the West also apply to the Chinese cases.

    For this 2017 edition, Charles Emmons has revisited his earlier conclusions and added new material that has come to light in the intervening years. This book remains the only major cross-cultural study comparing Chinese with Western ghost experiences.

    Look inside this book
    Click on the following link to read pages from Chinese Ghosts. You will need a pdf reader to view this excerpt.

    Strange Cases on Exhibit

  • The Dictionary of the Asian Language

    HK$138.00
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    with cartoons by Ming

    Of course there is no single Asian language. But plenty of vogue words from this booming continent are entering English.

    Did you know there is a flower named after former North Korean dictator Kim Jong-il? The Chinese have a word – shengnu, literally leftover – for the new phenomenon of unmarried women over thirty. Can you tell your jeepney from your jilbab, or yakuza from the yellowshirts?

    These are just some of the hundreds of words that illuminate little corners of life and culture in a pan-Asian selection of keywords from the zeitgeist.

    Look inside this book
    Click on the following link to read pages from The Dictionary of the Asian Language. You will need a pdf reader to view this excerpt.

    aaiiiyah! to Ayutthaya

  • The Slightest Chance

    HK$118.00
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    In war, you can pretend to be someone you’re not. Yet, in war, people find out who you really are.

    Hong Kong, 1941. Anglo-Australian civil servant Dominic Sotherly’s colonial sojourn in Hong Kong becomes complicated by his double life in both war and love. Enigmatic Englishwoman Gwen Harmison possesses secrets of her own – plus an unrelenting desire for liberty. Inscrutable Eurasian Chester Drake is but one of Gwen’s secrets.

    From gaiety at the Peninsula Hotel to persecution both inside and outside of internment, the story journeys from war-ravaged Hong Kong to war-weary China.

    From real history, meet the one-legged Chinese admiral who led Hong Kong’s daring ‘Great Escape’ and the Japanese Christian soldier who risked his life for the enemy. And, uniquely during the occupation of Hong Kong, discover how one Englishwoman made history in her defiance of Imperial Japan.

  • Where Strange Gods Call: Harry Hervey’s 1920s Hong Kong, Macao and Canton Sojourns

    HK$90.00
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    By Harry Hervey, introduced and annotated by Paul French
     
    No. 1 in the China Revisited series
     
    As a young man in the southern United States in the early years of the twentieth century Harry Hervey dreamt of travelling to Asia. He also dreamt of writing novels, movie scripts and travel books. He would do all these things. Eventually, in 1923, Hervey managed to find a way to get to the Far East working on a cruise liner. He was to spend time sojourning in Hong Kong, Macao and Guangzhou. His impressions of his travels through southern China, contained in his 1924 travelogue Where Strange Gods Call, is both lyrical and detailed, as well as atmospheric and informative. Walking from Central to Kennedy Town; the basement “dives” of Belcher’s Street to the private dining rooms of Queen’s Road; Macao’s Praia Grande to its infamous fan-tan houses, Hervey is a fascinating flâneur and guide. So too in Guangzhou, a city in upheaval, where Hervey encounters those fleeing warlord violence in the north and is granted an audience with Dr Sun Yat-sen.
     
    Hervey’s impressions of China would stay with him for the rest of his life, not least in his treatment for the 1932 movie Shanghai Express. Sadly, in the intervening century since the first publication of Where Strange Gods Call in 1924, Hervey’s name and work have been largely forgotten. Yet his early travel writing was to influence his later bestselling novels, popular short stories and Hollywood screenplays which, in turn, influenced American perceptions of Hong Kong, Macao and China.

    This publication of Hervey’s impressions of southern China also includes the sketches of his good friend the Savannah artist Christopher Murphy Jr., which were included in the first edition of Where Strange Gods Call and bring Hervey’s descriptions further to life.

    “Approaching Canton we were gliding past ugly, ramshackle dwellings and go-downs; grass-thatched house-boats, sampans, junks, and lighters, and millions of roofs that were flung in uneven terraces against the sky.”

     

  • The Girl Who Dreamed: A Hong Kong Memoir of Triumph Against the Odds

    HK$138.00
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    At the age of 14, Sonia Leung was raped by her ping-pong coach.
     
    She had moved from China two-and-a-half years earlier to join her family in Hong Kong, but she could not fit in. The family of six lived in a cramped subdivided hut in a Kowloon squatter village but rarely communicated with each other. The difficulties of adjusting to colonial Hong Kong heightened the tensions between her parents. Feeling trapped and unloved, Sonia was too afraid to tell anyone about the rape. She saved money by working part-time at McDonald's and, a year later, she bought a one-way plane ticket to Taipei and ran away from home.
     
    The Girl Who Dreamed is a memoir of her childhood in mainland China, Hong Kong and Taiwan – and how, through work and further education, she found her way to an independent life away from the family and world from which she needed to free herself.
  • Year of Fire Dragons: An American Woman’s Story of Coming of Age in Hong Kong

    HK$128.00
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    In 2010, bookish 22-year-old Shannon follows her Eurasian boyfriend to Hong Kong, eager to forge a new love story in his hometown. But when work sends him to London a month later, Shannon embarks on a wide-eyed newcomer's journey through Hong Kong – alone.

    She teaches in a local school as the only foreigner, explores Asia with other young expats and discovers family history in Hong Kong, all while trying to hold on to her thwarted romance. The city enchants her, forcing her to question her plans. Soon, she must make a choice between her new life and the love that first brought her to Asia.

    Look inside this book
    Click on the following links to view sample pages from Year of Fire Dragons. You will need a pdf reader to view these excerpts.

    One  Two

  • The Dragon’s Back

    HK$98.00
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    by Theadora Whittington

    Chinese fung shui tells us there is a dragon inhabiting every green valley, protective of the mountains and its route to the sea.

    Hiking into the hills of Hong Kong for a weekend picnic, Luke and his parents suddenly find their path blocked by a forest fire. Can the friendly mountain dragon help? Or is the mythical creature equally at risk from the actions of careless human beings?

    With original painted art, and a cut-out dragon for children to make themselves, The Dragon’s Back sends a gentle message of caring for the environment.

  • 香港二十 – 反思回歸廿載

    HK$128.00
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    香港筆會 編  (Go to English edition)

    1997年,香港從英國殖民管治順暢轉變成「一國兩制」下的共產黨管治。然而二十年過去,主權移交的真正衝擊方才降臨:香港與大陸經濟近乎全面融合,大陸遊客大量湧至,跨境衝突局勢緊張及自由被高速磨蝕。

    眾聲喧嘩力則剛,香港筆會於是邀請本港最優秀的作者來反映香港殖民地時代後的轉變,以散文、詩歌、小說及畫作去為這歷史時刻留下印記。

    Michael Braga · Mary-Jean Chan · Jennifer S. Cheng · 鄭嘉怡· Kris Cheng鄭樂捷· 周漢輝· Larry Feign方南理 · Harry Harrison · Gérard Henry敖樹克 · Louise Ho何少韻 · Oscar Ho Hing Kay何慶基 · Tammy Ho Lai-Ming · Sarah Howe · 羅樂敏· Arthur Leung · Leung Ping-Kwan秉鈞 · Louisa Lim林慕蓮 · Shirley Geok-lin Lim · 呂永佳 · William Nee倪偉平 · Jason Y. Ng · Margaret Ng · Timothy O’Leary 柯天銘· Michael O’Sullivan · Ilaria Maria Sala · Mishi Saran沙美智 · Shahilla Shariff · Shen Jian · 蘇美智 · 鄧小樺· Eddie Tay竹文 · 陶傑 · Stephen Vines安仕 · Marco Wan溫文灦 · Wawa · Kate Whitehead · Joshua Wong黃之鋒 · 黃裕邦· Xu Xi 許素細· Marco Yan · Chris Yeung楊健興 · Douglas Young 楊志超

    Kevin Lau Chun-to 劉進圖及Timothy Garton Ash 為本書作序。

    「香港是國際一大都會。在未來一個世紀,香港都會成為政治及學術討論的中心。我的推測是香港多元人口的成就會帶領本城跨越任何障礙。閱讀[《香港二十]文章讓我確認這個看法。」

    - 彭定康,末代港督

  • The Cleaner: The true story of one of the world’s most successful money launderers

    HK$200.00
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    with a foreword by Howard Marks, bestselling author of Mr. Nice

    In the 1980s, Bruce Aitken became one of the world’s most successful money launderers. Discover the ingenious methods he used to shift vast sums of currency across the globe.

    From humble beginnings in New Jersey, Bruce was destined to be a baseball player until fate intervened, in the form of a knee injury, and forever changed the course of his life.

    What started innocently enough, by answering an ad in the newspaper, turned into a globe-trotting lifestyle of moving money – huge sums of money – for some of the world’s most notorious and shadiest characters. From the jungles of Vietnam to the money capitals of the world, Bruce moved in circles where people would unquestioningly hand over millions of dollars to him on a handshake, to be deposited into Swiss bank accounts.

    Learn the truth behind the Lockheed Scandal, the Cessna-Milner affair, the Nugan Hand scandal and one of the largest drug busts in US history that brought the party to an end. It all started to crash via an event in Reno, Nevada, and nearly cost Bruce the rest of his life in prison.

    A unique and perfect insight into the money-laundering world of thirty-odd years ago.” Howard Marks

  • Love, Money and Friendships

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    In 1981, David Wong retired after 20 years as an administrative officer in the Hong Kong Government to chance his arm in the city’s cut-throat free market, as the managing director of a large multinational trading corporation. He soon discovered more legal and ethical boobytraps in business than he had bargained for. Nonetheless, he sidestepped them and in 1982, during the Sino-British negotiations to end British rule, he quickly sensed a unwarranted panic over the value of the Hong Kong dollar. He acted accordingly and made himself millions in weeks.

    Wong then visited different parts of China with friends. In the process he fell in love with a young and beautiful member of the Communist Youth League. When he tried to marry her, however, the mainland bureaucracy threw a host of obstacles in his path. After all, he was perceived as a capitalist from Hong Kong. But Wong’s friends used their collective guanxi with members of the Politburo to gain him permission to marry the girl. The title of this volume is aptly Love, Money and Friendships.

    Interlaced with Wong’s narrative are fascinating insights into aspects of China’s long and colourful history and culture.

    LOOK INSIDE THIS BOOK Click the following links to read excerpts from the book.

    Introduction

  • Octopus: The Pioneering Story of the World’s First Contactless Payment Card

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    Nowadays most people are familiar with payments using contactless cards, or even mobile phones. But few know that just after Hong Kong's handover to China in 1997, the city launched the world's first payment system using the then-new contactless smart technology.

    Drawing on the author's inside knowledge, this is a definitive history of how the Octopus card emerged, and how it progressed to become the most successful transport-based payment card. Disappointments and mistakes along the way are detailed and comparisons are made with similar systems in Singapore, London, South Korea and Japan. Chapters on lessons learned and the prospects for cashless societies round out the book.

  • The Curious Diary of Mr Jam: Official humorist for repressive regimes

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    He tried to bring comedy to Asia, but everyone just laughed at him

    Sam Jam’s whole life had been a tragic mistake. As a humorist in Asia he had repeatedly been sacked, blacklisted and chased out of buildings.

    But he refuses to believe that his audiences of conservative Muslims, Communist officials, religious police and Asian citizens in general have no sense of humor.

    This funny, poignant tale, which the author describes as “a novel for legal reasons”, is more than just laugh-out-loud entertainment. It shines an essential light on what global culture will look like as eastern ways of thinking start to dominate.

    Look inside this book
    Click on the link to view sample pages from The Curious Diary of Mr Jam. You will need a pdf reader to view this excerpt. 

    Chapter 1