Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Book on Mahathir in explosive demand

KUALA LUMPUR, May 6 — Palgrave Macmillan, the publisher of a controversial biopic on Tun Dr Mahathir Mohamad, is printing an extra 5,000 copies for Malaysia after all 500 initial copies were snapped up, said the book’s author Barry Wain.

This comes as city bookshops such as Kinokuniya and Borders said that they sold out of the book “Malaysian Maverick: Mahathir Mohamad in Turbulent Times” written by Wain, the former editor of the Asian Wall Street Journal.

MPH Bookstores said they almost sold out of the book and has it as a “What’s Hot” item on their website.

“The publisher has now decided on a fifth reprint — a sixth printing — of 5,000 books,” Wain told The Malaysian Insider via e-mail yesterday. “They will be sent to Malaysia to meet exploding demand.”

He added that a total of 1,300 copies were rushed to Malaysia from Singapore, all of which were all sold last week. Another 2,380 copies were sent from Hong Kong to Malaysia, and these were soon booked and are being distributed this week.

Wain said about 12,500 copies of the book have been sold so far in Asia and Australia.

The book was approved for sale by the Home Ministry only in late April, months after it was first launched in Asia in December.

The author also said hundreds or even thousands of the copies that were sold in Singapore since the launch could have been bought for or by Malaysians.

“Maverick” came into the spotlight after it asserted that up to RM100 billion was squandered under Mahathir’s watch via grandiose projects and corruption, and that the fierce US critic had sealed a secret military deal with the US.

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