About the book:
A scarce book by Sir Hugh Clifford with sketches of his life in Malaya between 1878-1898. Each chapter is dedicated to life in a particular part of Malaya, such as Kota Bharu in Kelantan, or of the people, such as the life of the Chinese coolies. There are also anecdotes of things like “melatah” and the customs of the Dayaks.
About the author (from Wikipedia):
Hugh Clifford intended to follow his father, a distinguished colonial general, into the British Army, but later decided to join the civil service in the Straits Settlements, with the assistance of his relative Sir Frederick Weld, the then Governor of the Straits Settlements and also the British High Commissioner in Malaya. He was later transferred to the British Protectorate of the Federated Malay States. Clifford arrived in Malaya in 1883, aged 17.
He first became a cadet in the State of Perak. During his twenty years in Perak, Clifford socialised with the local Malays and studied their language and culture deeply. He served as British Resident at Pahang, 1896–1900 and 1901–1903, and Governor of North Borneo, 1900–1901.
In 1903, he left Malaya to take the post of Colonial Secretary of Trinidad. Later he was appointed Governor of the Gold Coast, 1912–1919, Nigeria, 1919–1925, and Ceylon, 1925–1927. He continued to write stories and novels about Malayan life. His last posting was as Governor of the Straits Settlements and British High Commissioner in Malaya from 1927 until 1930. He wrote Farther India, which chronicles European explorations and discoveries in Southeast Asia.