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Tanamera (Hodder Great Reads) [Kindle Edition]

Noel Barber
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £9.99
Kindle Price: £6.49 includes VAT* & free wireless delivery via Amazon Whispernet
You Save: £3.50 (35%)
Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
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Book Description

Opulence. Invasion. Terror. And forbidden passion in 1930s Singapore.

'They were the golden days, when Singapore was as rich as its climate was steamy, its future as assured as it was busy. And those days were made even better when, as was inevitable, I fell in love with the Chinese beauty of Julie Soong and, against all unwritten canons of Singapore life, we became lovers.'

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Product Description


'An astonishing fictional debut . . . A great read' (Daily Mail)

'An exceedingly good book, and one of the can't put down variety . . . a winner' M M Kaye, author of The Far Pavilions (M M Kaye, author of The Far Pavilions)

'Noel Barber has always done everything in a big way, with style, panache and a dash of adventure. But he has never written a story of such dimensions, such a sense of history and imagination as this first novel . . . it is an intensely gripping and convincing story' (Manchester Evening News)

'Barber is a master' (Mail on Sunday)

Book Description

A truly Great Read - 'Convincing, exotic, lively, for sheer story-telling it puts other so-called "epics" in the shade' Standard

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1691 KB
  • Print Length: 740 pages
  • Publisher: Hodder & Stoughton; Reprint edition (16 Feb. 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B0071MB0TA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (50 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #77,566 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
4.7 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best novel I have read so far 8 May 2002
A fantastic story of two young lovers who fight to be together against all the racial odds of the 1930's in Singapore. It captures your imagination, and lets you live through out their struggles, experiences, love and heartache. A true bestseller. The first noel barber book I have read, and definately not the last
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars excellent !! 4 May 2005
This book definitely joins up with James Clavell's books about
Asia (Hong Kong and Japan). It is great to read about life in Singapore, a British Colony with overwhelming Chinese population. As a native of Hong Kong, I see differences as well as similarities among the Chinese people under British rule.
From what I undertand both Clavell and Barber are dead. I am waiting to see such books about China and Taiwan
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Capturing 6 May 2001
By A Customer
Having been to both Malaysia and Singapore several times, I felt myself back walking down Orchard Road and other places. The book gave me a much more historical background, not only about the unpleasant wartime but also of the tin and rubber-trade, which made Malaysia grow such much. A fine book which I found hard to put down.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lifestyles of the rich in Singapore 26 July 2013
I recognized the author's name from his other work, A Woman of Cairo, so that fact together with my interest in 1930s Singapore motivated me to read this novel. I am glad I did because the writing and detailed survey of historical events are excellent and the storyline and character development are convincing at all times.

To me, it is a sign of gifted writing when I can actively like or dislike a character as though s/he is a real person. Barber's writing brings to life the attitudes and lifestyles of the colonial upper crust in a way that is both alluring and disgusting as he reveals their self indulgence, racial prejudices, and generally pointless social whirl.

It is also a testament to Barber's skill in character development that we can believe utterly in the transformation of a social butterfly into a wartime volunteer who suffers great physical hardship in order to "do the right thing" - a nice case of noblesse oblige.

Barber's insights into the operations of family firms is very interesting as they lay bare the inordinate challenges that parents lay down for their children, expecting the next generation to fulfill their own personal ambitions once more. How many children nowadays rise to this challenge, preferring instead to find their own way in life? Although it can be said, of course, that if one is born into a millionaire lifestyle, it's probably easier just to accept what one is given, rather than trying to reinvent the wheel by starting out on a new track.

I liked this work and will look forward to reading more works by Barber.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A real epic 26 Nov. 1999
By A Customer
This is an epic tale that really captures the imagination. Set against the background of colonnial Singapore it tells the story of a famillies struggles, heartaches and achievements. Its a wonderfully good read and if yiu have ever been to Sigapore, or the far east, then you will really appreciate the detail, as Barber superbly captures the atmosphere of the orient.
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5.0 out of 5 stars what a treat 2 April 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Epic, overblown, overripe but also over the moon having just finished Tanamera. Barber is an old-fashioned but rather wonderful writer and he has written a beautiful, proper, old- school potboiler. In the end I couldn't put it down. His ability to conjure both colonial Singapore and Malaya and the horror of jungle warfare is matchless. Barber is an expert on the fall of Singapore and the chapters devoted to that terrible period are brilliantly written and capture the confusion, chaos and desperation of the time as well as the surreal way in which the old lifestyle continued as the city gradually fell apart. I loved every word.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Terrible Kindle Edition 15 Jun. 2014
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I agree with most of the other reviews in terms of the story. It's a great read. However...

What a shame there are so many mistakes in the Kindle Edition. Full stops in the wrong place, unexpected capitals, commas incorrectly positioned. Not a major problem, but having to work out what is meant to be there in order to be able to read it properly disturbs the reader and makes one surface from being lost in the depths of the Malay jungle. Not helpful for the enjoyment of a good book.
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4.0 out of 5 stars good finish 2 April 2015
By badger
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
Poor start consisting of a sex crazed couple leaping into bed every two minutes but picked up once the Japanese invaded. After yet more revelations of the staggering incompetence of the authorities, I am amazed that we ever won a war with the morons in high places. As an aside read Philby, a spy among friends. This book becomes quite exciting for the last quarter. All in all a pretty good read
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