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Tan Twan Eng in Person

Join us in person on Monday, October 16 at 7 PM as Tan Twan Eng presents his new novel, The House of Doors. 

About the Book

From the bestselling author of The Garden of Evening Mists, a spellbinding novel about love and betrayal, colonialism and revolution, storytelling and redemption.

The year is 1921. Lesley Hamlyn and her husband, Robert, a lawyer and war veteran, are living at Cassowary House on the Straits Settlement of Penang. When “Willie” Somerset Maugham, a famed writer and old friend of Robert’s, arrives for an extended visit with his secretary Gerald, the pair threatens a rift that could alter more lives than one.

Maugham, one of the great novelists of his day, is beleaguered: Having long hidden his homosexuality, his unhappy and expensive marriage of convenience becomes unbearable after he loses his savings—and the freedom to travel with Gerald. His career deflating, his health failing, Maugham arrives at Cassowary House in desperate need of a subject for his next book. Lesley, too, is enduring a marriage more duplicitous than it first appears. Maugham suspects an affair, and, learning of Lesley’s past connection to the Chinese revolutionary, Dr. Sun Yat Sen, decides to probe deeper. But as their friendship grows and Lesley confides in him about life in the Straits, Maugham discovers a far more surprising tale than he imagined, one that involves not only war and scandal but the trial of an Englishwoman charged with murder. It is, to Maugham, a story worthy of fiction.

A mesmerizingly beautiful novel based on real events, The House of Doors traces the fault lines of race, gender, sexuality, and power under empire, and dives deep into the complicated nature of love and friendship in its shadow.

About the Author

Tan Twan Eng was born in Penang but lived in various places in Malaysia as a child. He studied law through the University of London, and later worked as an advocate and solicitor in one of Kuala Lumpur’s most reputable law firms. His first novel, The Gift of Rain, was longlisted for the Man Booker in 2007. His second, The Garden of Evening Mists was a major international bestseller, shortlisted for the Man Booker in 2012 and winner of the Man Asia Literary Prize 2012 and the Walter Scott Prize for historical fiction. It was adapted into an award-winning film in 2019 that was directed by Tom Lin. Twan divides his time between Malaysia and South Africa.

Register

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Event date: 
Monday, October 16, 2023 - 7:00pm
Event address: 
9 College St
South Hadley, MA 01075
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The House of Doors By Tan Twan Eng Cover Image
$28.99
ISBN: 9781639731930
Availability: On Our Shelves Now
Published: Bloomsbury Publishing - October 17th, 2023

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