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Far Eastern Tales

288 pages

FAR EASTERN TALES is a collection of short stories which have never before appeared together. They are all born of his experience in Malaya, Singapore and other outposts of the former British Empire. Whether portraying a ship-borne flight from a lover's curse, murder in the jungle or the remembered East of a repatriate's suburban home, they all reveal Maugham at his best - sometimes caustic, sometimes gently comic, but always the shrewd and human judge of character and soul.

If all else perish, there will remain a storyteller's world...that is exclusively and forever Maugham, a world of verandah and prahu which we enter as well as we do that of Conan Doyle's Baker Street, and with a happy and eternal homecoming The Times Maugham teases out buried secrets as mesmerising as the heat and as menacing as the surrounding jungle Observer Ideally you should listen to these stories lying in a long cane chair on the veranda of a dark bungalow sipping a gin and bitters - not that Maugham's writing needs any further atmospheric embellishment. Like Kipling and Conrad, Maugham transports us to a long-since-vanished and distinctly non-PC world of hard-drinking colonial planters and traders and their frosty memsahibs Guardian

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Far Eastern Tales