Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Singapore Books: Return to a Sexy Island

I was pretty enthused when I heard that Neil Humphreys had a sexy new book. I read his first three books about Singapore (reviews here, here, and here!!) and enjoyed them for the most part. But his first three books were a little dated, and sometimes covered places that are no longer around. In Return to a Sexy Island, he documented his return to Singapore and his quest to only visit places that were new or had been totally revamped recently. It was the perfect thing to read just before my trip back.
Of his four Singapore books, I had the most fun reading this one. Reading it was like a trip back through time (or a trip through my old blog posts). He wrote about Fusionopolis, where Bryan used to work! He wrote about Pinnacle@Duxton, which I used to see from Duke-NUS every day. He went to Ubin, one of our favorite places in Singapore. He ranted about Bukit Brown's plight far more eloquently than I have. He visited Marina Barrage and HortPark and Henderson Waves and Labrador Park. It was so fun to turn page after page thinking "I've been there!" or "I LOVE THAT PLACE!" or "I once fell down those very same stairs!!" Good stuff.

My only criticisms of this book also held for the last three: if you haven't stayed in Singapore for an extended period of time, a lot of his jokes and references are likely to go over your head. I've also criticized his negativity in previous books, but it was much more under control in this one (for real though, don't tell Humphreys if you like to gamble. He will judge you harshly). Overall, he once again wrote a book full of laughs and nostalgia for anyone who's spent time in Singapore.

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