With great warmth and insight, Greg Sheridan takes us on a very personal journey to six Asian cities that have intrigued, surprised, repelled and charmed him.
Greg Sheridan has loved Southeast Asia for a long time. But he had no idea of what he was letting himself in for when he decided to journey to the hidden depths of some of his favourite cities with his Malaysian-born wife Jessie and their three sons.
From palaces to poverty, from high tech to high tradition, from mosque to market place, Greg Sheridan takes us on a kaleidoscopic journey through six dramatic and compelling cities - Kuala Lumpur, Jakarta, Hanoi, Saigon, Singapore and Hong Kong.
In Jakarta he finds himself in a disconcerting conversation with a Borneo face mask. He attends the only communist life drawing class in Hanoi and spends an evening under the stars with a Cantonese movie star in Hong Kong's Disco Bay. He also shares intimate conversations with the region's big men - Dr Mahathir of Malaysia, Singapore's Lee Kuan Yew, Abdurrahman Wahid in Jakarta - finds himself the guest of a friendly, if extreme, Islamic fundamentalist and spends one chilling morning with the leader of a terrorist group in Jakarta.
From radical feminists to young politicians on the make, Greg Sheridan shows us an Asia that is disturbing, charming, intriguing and always surprising.
Told with wit, passion and humour 'Cities Of The Hot Zone' is a story about both the mysterious consolations of family and an enduring love of these incomparable cities.