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Spirits Abroad by Zen Cho
Saturday, March 12, 2016 | 3/12/2016 08:00:00 PM |
So as promised, here's a short review I thought worth sharing about a book I finished reading just a couple of days ago. As a head start, I would like to point out that I'm a fan of anything horror. Superstitions have never been so eerie these couple of years growing up, the only place I might get that is from all the imaginations typed-expressed by others. As much as I enjoy being a reader, some writings failed to impress me... Like this one I'm about to share.

Spirits Abroad is written by Zen Cho, a born and raised Malaysian who currently lives in England. She mostly writes speculative fictions, with the occasional foray into romance as claimed by herself in her website. She was the joint winner of the IAFA William L. Crawford Fantasy Award in 2015 for her short story collections, Spirits Abroad. Cho has a law degree from Cambridge university, and works as a lawyer in London. Her debut novel, Sorcerer to the Crown, was published in 2015.

Spirits Abroad is a collection of short stories, published by award-winning Malaysian press Buku Fixi as part of their English-language imprint Fixi Novo (I like the cool way they claim their copyright). The book includes three new stories, as well as stories previously featured in various zines and anthologies. It was a joint winner of the 2015 Crawford Award (, 2015). Three chapters of this book, Here, There and Elsewhere, contains a number of short stories non-depicting to one another.

Knowing that Zen Cho is from Malaysia per se, manglish is common in this book. This isn't a strong suite for someone who wants to learn better English so I deducted the stars directly. The unseemly desperate attempts to mash up traditional beliefs and today's modernization lifestyles has also made it absurd to understand some of the writings. This can be netted in her stories, First National Forum on the Position of Minorities in Malaysia, The house of Aunts, One-day Travelcard for Fairyland, Rising Lion - The Lion Bows (which I think written in a disturbingly fantasized way), The Mystery of The Suet Swain and Prudence and the Dragon.

Despite the negativeness, the chapter Elsewhere happened to mesmerize me. The three last stories embed their own values captivating my views upon humanity nowadays. For instance, The Earth Spirit's Favourite Anecdote reminded me of my idle childhood: how forest used to be my favourite home and also playground. Liyana, on the other hand, captioned the relationships I have back in hometown with my family and how undoubtedly heaven is on our mother's feet. The Four Generations of Chang E is a befuddling masterpiece but its ending happened to augment my conjectures to the possibility of our future and how I might embrace it myself.

As there's a saying, customer is always right, my ratings on this book are bound to change upon comprehensions. If you found yourself to be contradicting to any points I have listed above, you are mostly welcomed to alter them. 

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