New Beginnings

New Beginnings

New Beginnings won first prize for Fiction (the Readers’ Popular Choice Award) in 2014 at the Book Festival in Malaysia.

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About the Book

In the southern Province of Guangxi amidst the turmoil of the Taiping Rebellion and the Opium War, a woman is kidnapped and her husband shipped out to Singapore as indentured labour. This is a moving story of the scourge of opium and one man’s plight and rise in fortune in British Malaya. New Beginnings takes the same family in Sweet Offerings and Bitter-Sweet Harvest back to the time when their forefathers first arrive in Malaya. In it you will see the beginnings of Kuala Lumpur.

Customer reviews (

I am going on to read all the books by Chan Ling Yap, historical involving China, Malaya, immigrants, families and customs.
Shows a genuine well researched knowledge.
– vanwin 10 January 2018

Before reading Chan Ling’s novels, my knowledge of the history of Malaysia was limited to a 1950’s stamp collection with stamps from far away places called Malacca, Penang, Perak, Malay Settlements etc. and the Opium Way was restricted to a page in my O Level history book. Chan Ling’s latest novel is a moving story which provides the background to the migration of Chinese workers to Malaysia and the involvement of all parties in the opium trade. A fascinating book, complementing Chan Ling’s first two novels. I look forward to her next book and to learning more about this intriguing and interesting part of the world.
– A M Wall 10 June 2014

Have enjoyed one of her other books, but found this rather boring. Found myself racing through it, just to get to the end.
– Lisa S 28 June 2016


Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: Marshall Cavendish International (Asia) Pte Ltd
Publication Year: 2013
Format: Paperback, Kindle
Length: 232 pages, 5.2 x 1.2 x 7.8 inches
ISBN: 9789814408615
List Price: USD18.99
eBook Price: USD9.99
".... compelling with a “page turning” quality. The characters are well rounded, and you feel that you know them well as you proceed. It is however, the historical research underpinning the story that is outstanding. I felt by the end that I had become an expert in aspects of Chinese and Malay history in the colonial era, as though having been given an armchair ride by the author."
– Amazon
"Chan Ling Yap’s third novel has all the assurance of her first two successes – and more. A strong story line, deftly rendered in brief and readable installments, takes us from the turbulence of a China unmercifully exploited with opium by the western powers in Victorian times, to the race and clan rivalries of an emerging Singapore and Malaya."
– Bill Jackson Editor, The Corporal and the Celestials, Ulster Historical Foundation, 2007
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About the Author
Yap Chan Ling

Born in Kuala Lumpur, Chan Ling Yap was educated in Malaysia and subsequently in England where she obtained a PhD in Economics. She lectured at the University of Malaya before joining the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization in Rome, where she worked for nearly two decades. She now lives in the UK with her husband and two grown-up children.

A widely published author of various textbooks and technical papers, her foray into fiction. Sweet Offerings, her first novel was highly praised for its beautiful evocation of Asia. Bitter-Sweet Harvest, her second novel, has been nominated for the Popular Readers Choice Award 2012 in Malaysia/Singapore and listed as "one of four books you won't want to put down" by Cosmopolitan, Singapore. New Beginnings, a historical fiction, set in the mid 1800s in China and Malaya, is her third novel.

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