Suggested Reading List
Evening Is the Whole Day
Author: Preeta Samarasan
Description: Set in post-colonial Malaysia, this richly textured debut novel depicts the unraveling of a wealthy family and the six-year-old daughter left reeling from losses and departures. Samarasan's unflinching yet tender examination of one immigrant family's experience exposes the complexities and layered history of Malaysia itself.
Eyewitness Top Ten Singapore
Author: Eyewitness Guides
Description: A compact, illustrated guide in the popular series, featuring favorite attractions. With handy pullout map.
In Buddha's Land
Author: Moe Min
Description: This beautiful, illustrated portrait of monuments, monasteries and rituals is both a striking visual overview of Buddhism as practiced in Burma and a splendid introduction to the country.
Lands of Charm and Cruelty, Travels in Southeast Asia
Author: Stan Sesser
Description: This wonderfully written book is a report on Southeast Asia by a talented foreign correspondent. A heart-wrenching portrait of the politics and potential of what Sesser clearly believes are some of the most fascinating places on earth. With chapters on Singapore, Laos, Cambodia, Burma and Sarawak.
Letters from Burma
Author: Aung San Suu Kyi, Heinn Htet
Description: A collection of candid and affectionate letters on Burmese culture, daily life and politics written by the country's iconic Nobel Prize-winning human rights leader who was held under house arrest by the military junta for many years.
Lonely Planet Phuket Encounter
Author: Trent Holden, Kate Morgan
Description: This lively shirt pocket guide to the city, jammed with personal recommendations and photographs, also includes a pull-out map.
Passage to Burma
Author: Scott Stulberg
Description: Stulberg presents the teak and bamboo forests, temples and especially the people of Burma in hundreds of full-page color photographs in this illustrated journey.
Running in the Family
Author: Michael Ondaatje
Description: Award-winning author Ondaatje returns to his native Sri Lanka in this hypnotic travelogue. His lovingly traced family memoirs are interspersed with poetry and ruminations on the island's post-colonial history.
Shwedagon, Golden Pagoda of Myanmar
Author: Elizabeth Moore, U Win Pe, Hansjorg Mayer (Photographer)
Description: The Shwedagon, the golden Buddhist shrine of Myanmar, is the subject of this photographic journey; which includes discussion of the pagoda’s history
Southeast Asia Map
Description: A clear, double-sided map of all of Southeast Asia at a scale of 1:4,500,000.
Southeast Asia, An Introductory History
Author: Milton Osborne
Description: In the 11th edition of this classic, Osborne (The Mekong) traces social, political and economic change in the region since the 18th century.
The Buddhist World of Southeast Asia
Author: Donald K. Swearer
Description: A succinct, authoritative survey of Theravada Buddhism in Southeast Asia as a dynamic, complex system of thought and practice imbedded in the respective cultures, societies, and histories of Burma, Thailand, Laos, Cambodia, and Sri Lanka.
The Glass Palace
Author: Amitav Ghosh
Description: In this panoramic novel full of tales and anecdote, Ghosh follows the lives and fortunes of Rajkumar and his family over three eventful generations in Burma, India and Malaysia.
The River of Lost Footsteps, Histories of Burma
Author: Thant Myint-U
Description: In this stimulating and important book, Myint-U (grandson of the late UN Secretary General U Thant and author of The Making of Modern Burma) uses Burmese history as a lens for understanding Myanmar today.
What the Buddha Taught
Author: Walpola Sri Rahula
Description: A classic account of Theravada Buddhism by a respected monk and scholar from Sri Lanka. Provides translations from original texts with explanations for Western readers. A good foundation for any visitor to Southeast Asia.