A readable, comprehensive biography of Sir Stamford Raffles, which serves as a good introduction to the life and times of the man so often called the “founder of Modern Singapore”.
About Raffles (from Wikipedia):
Sir Thomas Stamford Bingley Raffles, FRS (6 July 1781 – 5 July 1826) was a British statesman, Lieutenant-Governor of British Java (1811–1815) and Governor-General of Bencoolen (1817–1822), best known for his founding of Singapore and the British Malaya.
He was heavily involved in the conquest of the Indonesian island of Java from Dutch and French military forces during the Napoleonic Wars and contributed to the expansion of the British Empire. He was also an amateur writer and wrote a book, The History of Java (1817).
About Emily Hahn (from Wikipedia):
Emily “Mickey” Hahn (January 14, 1905 – February 18, 1997) was an American journalist and author. Considered an early feminist and called “a forgotten American literary treasure” by The New Yorker magazine, she was the author of 54 books and more than 200 articles and short stories. Her novels in the 20th century played a significant role in opening up Asia and Africa to the west. Her extensive travels throughout her life and her love of animals influenced much of her writing. After living in Florence and London in the mid-1920s, she traveled to the Belgian Congo and hiked across Central Africa in the 1930s. In 1935 she traveled to Shanghai, where she taught English for three years and became involved with prominent figures, such as The Soong Sisters and the Chinese poet, Shao Xunmei (Zau Sinmay).