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Saturday, March 13, 2004
The Nine Month Plan 
This is one simply wonderful and enjoyable story about an American/Italian woman, Nina, and her neighbour/best buddy, Joe. They grew up together in the Queens, faced many things together, even lost their virginity to each other. Throughout the years, they have gotten so close and used to each other that they simply denied being attracted and in love with each other. Then Joe makes an unusual request : He wants Nina to have his baby!

Nina, meanwhile, has been a very responsible woman all her life. She raised four younger siblings when her mother passed away, and all she ever wanted was to leave the Queens to enjoy her life for once. And she finally had the chance to do so! She planned to leave right after her sister's wedding which was nine months away. Due to gratitude, she decided to have Joe's baby and then leave Queens once she's given birth.

But along the way, Nina finally realizes that she really was in love with Joe, and that she couldn't leave her baby behind.

Witness Nina's predicament, alongside with some quirky characters and funny events.

Reviewed by raZZbeRRy

graceshu  # 3:33 AM
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Tuesday, March 09, 2004
Nineteen - A Collection Of Stories By Women & Silverfish New Writing I, II, III 
Thanks to aLiya's generosity, I managed to get hold of these books, all published by Silverfishbooks, a local bookshop / literature activist / society of sorts.

These three books are collections of short stories submitted by everyday people from Philippines, and Australia, and even from Hong Kong, India, and Korea, although intended originally to showcase only Malaysian writing. Personally, I found the first two of the series rather dissapointing, barring a few gems that held my attention long enough to want to re-read them.

The third installment however, restored my hope in the future of Malaysian writing, especially in reading "Malaysia Literature in English: Challenges and Prospects in the New Millennium", by Muhammad A. Quayum from Universiti Putra Malaysia. It was a well researched paper that tracked through history and socio-political influences in Malaysian literature, it was all very enlightening indeed.

The nineteen short stories in Nineteen, too, weren't too bad. As a matter of fact, some of these stories written by women were quite good. But perhaps I'm not one to judge as am viable to be quite biased when it comes to women writing issues that are close to my heart ;)

I have to say that it's all quite encouraging indeed to see that they're calling for entries again for the next installment, Silverfish New Writing IV. Send your submissions in to sbooks@po.jaring.my, and head over to this page for more on the requirements & format of your submissions. The closing date is about three weeks from now, 31th March 2004, so quick - poise your fingers over your trusty keyboard, and er. let them scamper around (in an orderly fashion), squeeze those creative juices, and waste no time okays.

And er. Hives. Need Rest. Antihistamines. Babais.

graceshu  # 3:53 AM
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Monday, March 08, 2004
Report: Book Swap Meet III, 7/3/2004 
Chooki, April, Ryuu, aLiya, Ted & GraceShu turned up for the Book Swap Meet III at Stabucks, KL Sentral, last Sunday.

aLiya and I got comfy with talk of mutual acquaintances, work, interviews, malaysian writers, dietary habits of undergraduates, laryngitis, the joys of slurpee, and other trivial talk before Chooki, April and Ryuu joined us after lunch at the neighbouring Kenny Rogers. We were then regaled with stories and minute dissection of Meesh's "Impromptu" Blogger's Meet, of stalkers, sickeningly amusing short stories, eastern & western philosophy, japanese food, indoor theme parks, discounted books, and *ahems* twenty-something birthday cake ;) And yeah, we swapped books, and talked more.

Some of us then went off to KLCC's Times Bookstore & Kinokuniya to hunt for more books, and talked of the skill of negotiation in both the working world & real life, apparent "evil" places, shakespear vcds, travelling, backpacking, and er. sorry my memory is failing me =P

After our purchases, dinner, a nice stroll in the park, terrifying sightings of hip-swaying in the park, kutukking joggers (we're just jeles), and some peaceful reading under a tree, the birds twittered into dusk, then cicadas sang into the night.

We then headed home contended with food for the soul (great fellowship), the gut (yummy pasta), and mind (more books!). It was a good day indeed.

Keep this page bookmarked for our next event - Bloggers Day Out @ Saisaki Japanese Buffet (tentatively April 18th), and the next BookSwapMeet IV (May 2nd).

graceshu  # 10:34 PM
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What Books Have Influenced Your Life? 
Ryuu sent me this interesting discussion, and I'd thought it'd be great if we could all talk about it too.

I'm not exactly well read, nor do I have the luxury of owning limitless plastic money that goes swish to pay for binded pieces of wood-product as I sweep them off bookshelves ;) as am, yes, a starving (heh!) undergraduate surviving on instant noodles everytime there appears a need for personal necessities, which, er. includes. er. stuff; but (am finally getting to the point) I do have a list of literature (other than the obvious ones ie. The Bible, Enid Blytons, Peter Rabbit, atlases, encyclopedias, etc) that has somewhat influenced my tender twenty-one years of existance.

George Orwell - Animal Farm, 1984
Sue Townsend - The Adrian Mole Series
Laura Ingalls - The Little House Series
Louisa May Alcott - Little Women
JD Salinger - The Catcher in the Rye
Charles Dickens - David Copperfield, Great Expectations, The Pickwick Papers, Our Mutual Friend
Mark Twain -The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
Han Suyin - The Many Splendoured Thing, ..And The Rain My Drink, Two Lovers, The Crippled Tree
Josh McDowell - Evidence That Demands A Verdict
Jostein Gaarder - Sophie's World
Biographies - Elizabeth Blackwell, Gandhi, Nelson Mandela

What were the books that influenced your life?

graceshu  # 9:30 PM
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Sunday, March 07, 2004
See u guys there k! 
2pm...Argh hair isnt dried yet. Nevermind! Wheres my medication? Arghhhh tak makan lagi. Adui. Is that a pimple I see? Ish!

2 15pm Oh no! Gonna be late now. Gotta catch the train. Babais. See you guys there!

graceshu  # 2:03 PM
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