The year is 1905 and Chai Mingzhi, an immigrant newly arrived in the port-town of Malacca, takes Engi, an indigenous boy from the tropical forest, to live with him.
Trapped in a realm he doesn't recognize and finding himself caught up in Chai Mingzhi's bitter personal affairs, Engi quickly learns to take on the shape of the legendary mouse deer in order to survive in the outside world.
Twenty years later, Engi sets out to unravel the mystery surrounding Chai's past, his tireless quest for the land where the grand Minang Villa is built, and the tragedy that destroyed him.
The Mouse Deer Kingdom is a tale of love and betrayal against the backdrop of a troubled time when hundreds of thousands of Chinese fled poverty and the Qing Empire for Southeast Asia, where their arrival unsettled native life in their new home.
- Format: Paperback
- Pages: 384 pages
- Publisher: Pan Macmillan
- Publication Date: 10/10/2013
- Category: Modern & contemporary fiction (post c 1945)
- ISBN: 9780330454438
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