Journalist publish entertaining book on local beliefs and superstition

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Ewon flanked by the author Anna Vivienne (right) KKJA President Yong Ted Phin and SJA President Muguntan Vanar (4th Left) and Datuk Armizan Mohd Ali, Nelly J Green (8th right) commemorating the event with a photograph.- Pix by Liaw Sin Kuang

KOTA KINABALU: A book entitled ‘Strange Magic and Supernatural Encounters’ launched today can be a source of information on the people’s way of life in the olden days.

Ewon (4th left) with author Anna Vivienne and UPKO Women Chief Datin Julianna Janni (2nd left) as well as Nelly (3rd right) with KKJA President Yong and Datuk Armizan (right) after the ribbon cutting ceremony

The book containing 12 stories, written by journalist Anna Vivienne, can accord readers with insight on the people’s lifestyle in the olden days, such as paddy planting, hunting, foraging, fishing and barter trading, among others.

Words in local dialects are also shared within the book and translated in glossary to enable readers to know terms and simple names of several items.

The book was launched by the Minister of Rural Development Datuk Ewon Benedick who spoke of her book as entertaining and informative as the superstition as well as beliefs the stories centred on are part of the local heritage.

Ewon speaking to the author Anna Vivienne watched by book cover model (right)- Pix by Liaw Sin Kuang

“Although we no longer believe or live our life around these superstitions, they are still part of our cultural background. Many young people may not be able to identify with them anymore but the stories can serve as a reminder to them that once, in the olden days, our ancestors believed in them.”

He also said that stories contained within are not only based on the Kadazandusun tribes but also other ethnic groups that live on the land, both ancient and in modern times.

“I therefore believe that this book can be a good light entertaining reading material for everyone especially young people who might not have heard of these tales before.”

Ewon speaking to members of the Press- Pix by Liaw Sin Kuang

He encouraged tourism industry players to promote this product to tourists as souvenir, adding although ‘we are moving towards the digital age where everything can be read online, physical books are still very much relevant in this day and age.’

He commended the author for her effort and encouraged her to write more books of this genre and augment the number of similar reading materials in the market.

The book entitled ‘Strange Magic and Supernatural Encounters’ share the traditional norm of the people from before monotheism to modern day; woven within the stories.

Anna Vivienne the author of the book in her speech said that the stories in the book which was long in the making, was garnered from tales told by her grandparents.

She said she fleshed them out with fictitious characters to make it more interesting to readers.

According to her, she wanted the book to be entertaining, informative and educational for readers of all walks of life, while stressing that similar story may occur in other communities but may differ in the telling.

“Due to the nature of this book, I hope that readers especially youth who are not familiar with local folklore and supernatural beliefs of the people will enjoy reading this book while acquiring knowledge of our own cultural heritage.”

“The content of this book can also be used as reading materials by English teachers, as the stories are not only informative but entertaining and simply delivered as well.  These stories may not be as fantastic as Charles Dickens (A Christmas Carol), but they are derived from the tales of our own people, such as from grandparents,” she stressed.

She also hoped players in the tourism industry will adopt her book as souvenirs for their tourists, as it contain information on the lifestyle of the people in the past and will give them a brief insight on how we used to live before.

“I also hope that the book evoke interest in the film industry as it can be of tremendous entertainment to viewers and accord Malaysia information on our local beliefs and culture, the fun way.”

For those who wish to purchase the book, they are invited to call 011 26883963.-BNN