"THE LINGERING EYE" - Recollections of North Borneo
The Lingering Eye offers a nostalgic and amusing look at the early post-war years of rehabilitation of the Crown Colony of North Borneo after several years of Japanese occupation. Seventy years ago Agnes Newton Keith wrote of her idyllic life in pre-war Borneo ‘Land Below The Wind’; curious readers can find out what happened after the war in Wendy Suart's book.
Through the pages walk the Governor and his lady, the District Officers who ruled their pocket kingdoms of jungle and padi, the Police and the Customs officers, the 'merchant princes' garnering the country's wealth, the sad Somerset Maugham flotsam who drifted in and out, the indigenous tribes like the Dusuns, the Bajaus, the headhunting Muruts and Dyaks with their blowpipes and parangs, and the Malays, Indians and Chinese merchants.
However, this book is not a learned treatise on an Asian country. It is the author's personal story of her discovery of Borneo, of meeting her husband, of their first home with all its primitive handicaps, of her struggles with cooking, servants, kerosene lamps and insects, and above all the story of this little-known country with its beautiful beaches, off-shore islands, jungle and its 14,000 foot sacred mountain, Kinabalu.
"I have so enjoyed your book. You must recommend it as holiday reading. I sat outside, hot day, no interruption, and just read it through, sheer bliss." Gwen Hall, Church Crookham.
"......how much I enjoyed reading your book. You have certainly painted a vivid picture of early post-war colonial life with its shortages, make-do's and all the fun of making your own entertainment." W. Lawson
"What a wonderful book - and insight to those expats who lived and worked in so many outposts of empire." R. Livesey, Lincs.
"You captured so well the excitement of leaving home and arriving in the East to find everything so fascinatingly different." B. Wallace, Auckland, New Zealand
"Your book was excellent. Your style of writing transports me to all the places and makes my imagination run riot." V. Painter, Horsham, Australia
"It really is a delightful piece of work and wonderfully brings alive the spirit of its time. It is a truly remarkable piece of work." M. Orrom, Great Missenden