College by the Sea

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In 1990 Ben Drew, an experienced teacher and examiner from England, lands a lucrative tax-free contract to teach Singapore's top students preparing for Oxbridge and the Ivy League in one of their sixth-form colleges. Empire Junior College is attractively positioned next to the island's main beaches, ranks second of fifteen such institutions and competes ferociously with Raffles JC for top spot. Ben, once divorced, brings his new fiancée to approve this highly developed, high-rise country on the Equator, sweltering in heat and humidity. The same size and shape of the Isle of Wight it already holds 3.5 million Chinese, Malays and Indians, all living in close quarters, but in harmony, under the watchful benevolence of a PAP government that has held power since independence from Britain in 1965. Ben finds the students the most engaging and intelligent he has ever taught, but the bureaucracy of the college management is so challenging that he finds himself regularly at odds with the Principal, in his genuine attempts to improve the students' grades and their views on saving what little is left of the island's natural environment. But he quickly discovers the delights of the Singapore people and culture too, as well as the many opportunities, financial or otherwise, opening up to a western expatriate in a fast-developing Asian economy. However, will the happiness he seeks outside, be ruined by the problems he meets inside, the concrete walls of this college by the sea?

About the Author: Derek Trueman is a retired teacher and examiner who has worked and travelled around the world. His affection for the Singapore of the 1990s is based on the 13 years he spent working there so, although dramatically heightened in places for this work of fiction, Ben Drew's experiences and lifestyle are grounded in perceived reality. This is Derek's third novel, moving across the world from Italy with, first, Terra Rossa, then Brindisia, and he has also written an anthology of poems, Rhymescape. He presently lives in Thailand working on his fourth novel, Orchid Rest.

  • Paperback: 386 pages
  • Publisher: White Falcon Publishing; 1 edition (April 2024)
  • Author: Derek Trueman     
  • ISBN-13: 9798892222594
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 8.5 Inches

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