A huge as­sort­ment of au­thors

Over 30 lo­cal writ­ers and per­son­al­i­ties are sched­uled to ap­pear at an ex­cit­ing BookFest@Malaysia this year.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - Reads - star2@thes­tar.com.my By TER­ENCE TOH is

IN a week or so, Malaysian book lovers will be treated to BookFest @Malaysia, the largest book ex­po­si­tion in the coun­try. Or­gan­ised by Pop­u­lar Book­stores (M) Sdn Bhd for more than a decade now, the fair has be­come syn­ony­mous with a huge range of books in English, Malay, and Chi­nese as well as a plethora of sta­tionery and gad­gets be­ing of­fered at bar­gain prices.

But it is not only book en­thu­si­asts and dis­count hunters who will be at BookFest@Malaysia 2017: over 30 prom­i­nent lo­cal au­thors will also be mak­ing ap­pear­ances at the event.

They will be hav­ing ses­sions at The Stage in Hall 5 of the Kuala Lumpur Con­ven­tion Cen­tre to dis­cuss their books and give fans an in­valu­able op­por­tu­nity to meet them, pick up ad­vice from them, or get books signed.

The au­thors range from pro­fes­sional fic­tion au­thors to nonfiction writ­ers at the top of their field – whether its hor­ror sto­ries or home-buy­ing you’re in­ter­ested in, there’s an au­thor ses­sion for you at BookFest@Malaysia.

Here are some of the au­thors mak­ing ap­pear­ing dur­ing the nine-day fair. For more in­for­ma­tion, in­clud­ing a full list of au­thor ap­pear­ances and times, go to book­fest­malaysia.com/ex­hi­bi­tion.php#name.

> Rus­sell Lee is­abito­famys­tery. Most peo­ple know him as the Sin­ga­porean au­thor re­spon­si­ble for the best­selling se­ries True Sin­ga­pore Ghost Sto­ries .Asof 2017, the 26 books in the se­ries have sold over 1.5 mil­lion copies world­wide, mak­ing him one of the re­gion’s most pop­u­lar writ­ers.

When­ever he ap­pears in pub­lic, how­ever, Lee al­ways wears a mask, hat, and gloves, as well as clothes that cover ev­ery inch of him­self. He has never re­leased any pho­to­graphs or in­for­ma­tion about his per­sonal life, lead­ing many to won­der about his iden­tity. Here’s your chance to ask him why the se­crecy, per­son­ally.

Meet Rus­sell Lee on June 24 (Satur­day) at 3pm-3.45pm.

> An­drew Matthews is one of the world’s most pop­u­lar self­help au­thors. Based in Queens­land, Aus­tralia, Matthews has em­pow­ered au­di­ences in over 25 coun­tries to en­joy their life and work. He has pre­sented his ideas at over 1,000 con­fer­ences and con­ven­tions, usu­ally on the topic of get­ting the most out of life.

His books, which in­clude Be­ing Happy, Fol­low Your Heart, How Life Works, Be­ing A Happy Teen and Stop The Bul­ly­ing, have sold over seven mil­lion copies in 43 lan­guages. Matthews is also a tal­ented il­lus­tra­tor, and many of his books come with hu­mor­ous car­toons that he draws him­self. Meet Matthews on June 25 (Sun­day) at 1pm-1.45pm.

> Boon­siri Som­chit is an ac­com­plished fi­nance and op­er­a­tions pro­fes­sional with over three decades of ex­pe­ri­ence. She has held se­nior lead­er­ship po­si­tions with sev­eral multi­na­tional com­pa­nies, in­clud­ing Mo­torola, Ko­mag, and Ad­vanced Mi­cro De­vices, and is recog­nised as a world-class leader in global busi­ness ser­vices (GBS).

Som­chit is a reg­u­lar speaker and pan­el­list at events all over the world on GBS, lead­er­ship, women in busi­ness, and mo­ti­va­tion. She has shared her sto­ries on the TEDx Women stage, and has been fea­tured in publi­ca­tions such as Her World and Madam Chair mag­a­zines and The Star. Her first book is When The Chicken Dies, Ev­ery­one Cries, which fo­cuses on how text­book lead­er­ship skills fail to bridge the gap be­tween man­age­ment and their peo­ple. Meet Som­chit on June 26 (Mon­day) at 5pm-5.45pm.

> Tunku Halim (in full, Tunku Halim Tunku Tan Sri Ab­dul­lah), a lawyer by trade, is known as “Malaysia’s Prince of Dark­ness” thanks to the pop­u­lar dark fan­tasy and hor­ror sto­ries he has been pub­lish­ing since the 1990s.

His short story col­lec­tions in­clude The Woman Who Grew Horns and Other Chill­ing Tales, 44 Ceme­tery Road, and Gravedig­ger’s Kiss, while his nov­els in­clude Dark De­mon Ris­ing, Last Breath, and A Malaysian Restau­rant In Lon­don. He is also the au­thor of sev­eral nonfiction books, in­clud­ing A Chil­dren’s His­tory Of Malaysia, and So Fat-Lah! 30 Ways To A Slim­mer You. His 2014 an­thol­ogy,

Hor­ror Sto­ries, won the first prize

in the fic­tion cat­e­gory in the 2015 Pop­u­lar-The Star Read­ers’ Choice Awards. Its se­quel, Hor­ror Sto­ries

2, is nom­i­nated in this year’s awards. (The win­ners of the 2017 Read­ers’ Choice Awards will be an­nounced at the BookFest on July 1.) Meet Tunku Halim on July 1 (Satur­day) at 2pm-2.45pm.

> Dr Lee Su Kim is an as­so­ciate pro­fes­sor of English at the School of Lan­guage Stud­ies and Lin­guis­tics, Univer­siti Ke­bangsaan Malaysia. She is a founder mem­ber and the first woman pres­i­dent of the Per­anakan Baba Ny­onya As­so­ci­a­tion of Kuala Lumpur & Se­lan­gor.

Lee is the au­thor of nine books in­clud­ing two best­sellers, Malaysian Flavours: In­sights Into Things Malaysian and Man­glish: Malaysian English At Its Wack­i­est, which have sold more than 10,000 copies each. Her short-story col­lec­tion, Ke­baya

Tales, won the first prize in the fic­tion cat­e­gory in the 2011 Read­ers’ Choice Awards. Meet Lee on July 1 (Satur­day), at 6pm-6.45pm. > So­nia Mael is the non de plume of Datin Hari­son Ah­mad, who spent 18 years as a teacher, be­fore en­ter­ing the world of busi­ness at 45. She took up writ­ing to fill the void left by the 2007 death of her hus­band of 40 years and has never looked back.

Her de­but novel, Don’t For­get

To Re­mem­ber, won first prize for fic­tion in the 2016 Read­ers’ Choice Awards. She re­leased her sec­ond novel, No Or­di­nary Love, ear­lier this year.

Kal­som Taib also started in the ed­u­ca­tion line, be­fore mov­ing to the pri­vate sec­tor, work­ing in sev­eral multi­na­tional com­pa­nies from the 1970s to the 1990s. She is the au­thor of three bi­ogra­phies, Taib An­dak: In A Class Of His Own; Zainab Ah­mad: A Truly Re­mark­able Woman; and The Shafee Ya­haya Story: Es­tate Boy To ACA Chief.

She pub­lished Ka­marud­din Ab­dul­lah’s Pages From My Past, and was the co-au­thor (with Hami­dah Ab­dul Hamid) of Jo­hor Palate: Tan­jung Pu­teri Recipes, which won one of the “Best In The World” awards in the Culi­nary Her­itage cat­e­gory at last year’s World Gour­mand Cook­book Awards. Meet Hari­son (ie So­nia Mael) and Kal­som on Sun­day, July 2 (Sun­day) at 3pm-3.45pm.

> Prof Mush­tak Al-Atabi is cur­rently the Se­nior Deputy Provost at He­riot-Watt Univer­sity, Malaysia. He pi­o­neered the CDIO (Con­ceive, De­sign, Im­ple­ment, Op­er­ate) sys­tem and de­liv­ered the first MOOC (Mas­sive Open On­line Course) in Malaysia. He is an honorary chair at the School of Me­chan­i­cal Engi­neer­ing of the Univer­sity of Birm­ing­ham (UK) and the ed­i­tor-in-chief of the Jour­nal Of Engi­neer­ing Sci­ence & Tech­nol­ogy.

Apart from numer­ous re­search publi­ca­tions, Prof Al-Atabi has pub­lished three books, Shoot The Boss, Think Like An En­gi­neer, and Driv­ing Per­for­mance. Meet Prof Al-Atabi on July 2 (Sun­day), at 6pm-6.45pm.

> Dr Soo Wincci is an award­win­ning singer, ac­tress, model, host, and en­tre­pre­neur. She was crowned Miss Malaysia 2008 and rep­re­sented Malaysia in the 2008 Miss World pageant.

In 2016, the Malaysian Book of Records pro­claimed her the “first Miss Malaysia to re­ceive a PhD” (it’s in busi­ness ad­min­is­tra­tion).

Soo is the owner of Be­yond Artistes Sdn Bhd, and has been seen in many lo­cal films and tele­vi­sion shows. She has re­leased many al­bums, in­clud­ing 2009’s

Soo Wincci, 2012’s Hap­pi­ness, and 2014’s Wincci.

In 2017, she pro­duced her first book and au­dio book en­ti­tled

In­winc­ci­ble X. She has also been in­volved in mu­sic pro­duc­tion and mo­ti­va­tional speak­ing. Meet Soo on July 2 (Sun­day), at 7pm-7.45pm.

BookFest@Malaysia 2017 will be on daily, from 10am to 10pm, from June 24 to July 2 at the Kuala Lumpur Con­ven­tion Cen­tre.

Ad­mis­sion is with pur­chase of the BookFest cat­a­logue at RM2.50 per en­try or RM10 for mul­ti­ple en­tries over the nine days. Cat­a­logues are avail­able at all Pop­u­lar and Harris book­store out­lets na­tion­wide and will also be sold at the event’s en­trance.

En­trance is free for stu­dents who are 18 years old and be­low and for se­nior cit­i­zens aged 60 and above.

For more in­for­ma­tion, visit facebook.com/Book­Fest­Malaysia. Star Me­dia Group is a me­dia part­ner of the event.

— Pho­tos: Filepics

Soo will be at BookFest@Malaysia 2017 to talk about her book and other achieve­ments.

Yes, that

Lee, ‘ap­pear­ing’ at a pre­vi­ous BookFest! We dare you to ask him why he cov­ers up ....

Dr Lee will share her vast knowl­edge about Per­anakan and Baba and Nonya cul­ture.

Prof Al-Atabi will be dis­cussing best prac­tices in man­age­ment.

Tunku Halim is al­ways a pop­u­lar draw at BookFest thanks to his en­ter­tain­ing talks.

Matthews will share his ideas about hap­pi­ness.

Hari­son will dis­cuss her pop­u­lar ro­mance nov­els.

Som­chit’s en­ter­tain­ing man­age­ment talks on in­ter­na­tional stages al­ways draws a crowd.

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