Tuesday, 31 July 2012

John Cleese in 'Privates on Parade'

John Cleese plays a starring role in 'Privates on Parade', a 1982 film adaptation of the Peter Nichols play of the same title about a fictional  military entertainment group, the 'Song and Dance Unit, Southeast Asia' (SADUSEA) assembled to entertain the troops in the Malayan jungle in the years after World War II.

The play is set around the activities and exploits of SADUSEA, a mostly gay British military concert party stationed in Singapore and Malaya in the late 1940s during the Malayan Emergency. The drama draws upon Nichols' own experiences in the real-life Combined Services Entertainment, the postwar successor to ENSA, Entertainments National Service Association.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

'Merdeka' now available as a NOOK Book

Good news for NOOK readers - 'Merdeka' is now available in the Barnes & Noble online store for NOOK devices and apps. This is the Smashwords edition.  You can see it here.

Barnes & Noble also sell the paperback edition of 'Merdeka' in their online store. 

Keep checking this blog for information relating to other versions as they become available.

The Battle of Pasir Panjang Ridge and the fall of Singapore

There has been a lot of media interest in the fall of Singapore in 1942 since the BBC aired their new series on the topic.

The Malay mortar crew on display at Bukit Chandu
The two day battle for Pasir Panjang Ridge was very briefly covered in the context that the defenders' stubborn resistance led to the subsequent Japanese revenge massacre of 200 patients and staff at the Alexandra Hospital (many of the patients were bayoneted in their beds).  In 'Merdeka' Alick hears the story of Sergeant Hisyam of the Malay Regiment, a survivor of the battle - Sergeant Hisyam is a fictional character,  but what actually did happen at Pasir Panjang Ridge? 

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

'Merdeka' Shipped to Apple's iBookstore

'Merdeka' was shipped to Apple's iBookstore on 18th July 2012.  All books are manually checked by Apple and can take up to two weeks from the shipping date to appear.  It seems that the only way to see if a title is available is to search the iBookstore from an Apple device.  Unfortunately my e-reading device is a Kindle and so I can't check :(
If any kind reader with an iPad or iPhone is able to search Apple's iBookstore for 'Merdeka',  it would be hugely appreciated if you could advise when it appears.  You can do this by leaving a comment below this post, or by sending me a direct message.  Once I know that it is there and available I will update accordingly.

Thursday, 12 July 2012

Gurkhas and British Soldiers - The Beginning

In 'Merdeka' Alick goes into the deep jungle as part of a Gurkha fighting patrol.  These days a lot of people are familiar with Gurkhas and the British Army, but how did the story start?  There is a famous quote attributed to Lt Frederick Young of the Army of the Honourable East India Company who was surrounded by hostile Gurkhas on the border between India and Nepal.

"I went there one man and came out three thousand".

Saturday, 7 July 2012

The Mereka ebook now published on Smashwords (multi format)

As of today, in addition to Kindle,  'Merdeka' is available for purchase and download in the following key formats:  Epub, Online Reading, PDF, RTF and several others.  The book can be purchased through Smashwords. What does this mean?  Now you no longer just need a Kindle to properly enjoy the eBook.  If you buy the book at Smashwords the guidelines for format choice are:

Epub (Apple iPad/iBooks, Nook, Sony Reader, Kobo, and most e-reading apps including Stanza, Aldiko, Adobe Digital Editions, others)

Online Reading (HTML, good for sampling in web browser)

PDF (good for reading on PC, or for home printing)

RTF (readable on most word processors)

The downside (or upside depending on your perspective) is that the Smashwords edition is DRM (Digital Rights Management) free, giving much more flexibility to purchasers.

A further update will be posted once Smashwords has made the book available to key online retailers.  There is no change to the Kindle Edition in the Amazon stores, which is available as before.

Wednesday, 4 July 2012

Another review on Amazon

Many thanks to 'WicklowLass' for a review of 'Merdeka' just posted on Amazon.co.uk.  Extracts from this review, along with all the others, can be seen on the Review page of this blog.  Its great to know that 'Merdeka' is being read with enjoyment by people who would not ordinarily read a book with a military theme.........