"Road To Nationhood, Malaysia 1941-1966" is already on sale and I got a copy.
It is a 247-page hard cover book that unravels our country's past from 1941-1966 through photographs and news stories that made the front pages during those years.
I found myself going on an intriguing journey through Malaysia's past -- with every flip of the page tugging at my heartstrings.
Is it my fascination with old black-and-white photos and news articles that depict our history?
You literally see history unfolding and evolving before your eyes. In fact, I told Zainul that it was like watching a documentary, with a lot of drama thrown in. Priceless.
"Road to Nationhood, Malaysia 1941 -1966" is a history book that is not your regular boring history book.
A great way to learn history, I assure you. Let your kids read it.
Why 1941 to 1966?
"Well, these are the crucial formative years -- through the war, the British and Japanese occupation and the road towards achieving independence, the formation of Malaysia and the separation of Singapore from Malaysia," he told me.
In his foreward, "History As It Was Told", Zainul wrote:
"As a chronicler of events, the newspaper undoubtedly flawed. Then again, once in a while, all those published reports seem to come together -- and tell a single, engaging story. Such is the case with news on Malaysia in 1941-1966, which combined to offer a view of the period that is unfiltered and unadulterated. It was arguably the most significant quarter-century in the country's history. In publishing reports and images of the trials and tribulations of nationhood, this book attempts to give readers a sense of what it was like for the people then -- not least, the drama, emotions and atmosphere related to the birth of a nation".
The cover is a photo of a jubilant Tunku Abdul Rahman arriving at the Selangor Club padang in Kuala Lumpur on Aug 30, 1957.
We all know the significance of this event. It was here that the Union Jack was lowered at the stroke of midnight and Malayan flag raised to mark the birth of a sovereign independent nation.
Anybody and everybody who was there and witnessed the event will tell you just how touching and emotional that moment was.
I was not there but I could always feel the stirring in my heart everytime it was related to me.
The inside cover is a photo spread of the Tunku (taken on Oct 11, 1956) posing beside his new Imperial Chrsyler.
On the back jacket cover is a photo taken on Sept 16 1963, of pupils of the Perak Chinese secondary girls performing at the Malaysia Day celebrations at the Ipoh Padang in Perak.
The book is divided into six chapters, following the progressive sequence of events: Japanese Occupation; From British Military Administration To Federation of Malaya; The Emergency Years; Road To Merdeka; Formation of Malaysia; Epilogue.
There are 203 black and white photographs in the book with the reproductions of 86 front pages of Straits Times and The Malay Mail.
It was published in conjunction with the third "Road To Nationhood" exhibition that is currently being held at the lobby of the Bangsar Shopping Centre in Kuala Lumpur.
The exhibition, in celebration of Merdeka Day, is being organised by NSTP. It ends Sept 9.
Try not to miss it. It is an incredible feeling of nostalgia when I see faces and events of the past. The glory of Malaysia's past and history. The glory of this country!
Thank you, Zainul for bringing us the book and the exhibition. Syabas and Kudos to your faithful team. I know that you played a very very large part in making it happen.