Peggy Loh’s ‘My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then and Now’

Book Three of My Johor Stories completes the trilogy of the author’s My Johor Stories

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Dato Dr Abdul Rahim Ramli, President of the Johor Royal Court Council with My Johor Stories series author, Peggy Loh with the copy of ‘My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then and Now’

My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then And Now, the third and final installment of My Johor Stories series of books by Peggy Loh, was officially launched on the 18th of December 2022, by Dato Dr Abdul Rahim Ramli, President of the Johor Royal Court Council, who also wrote the Foreword in this book

Work on Book Three started in 2019 but was delayed due to the global pandemic that reached our shores in early 2020.

When the economy reopened in 2022, work on the manuscript progressed more rapidly, and with the support of MPH Group Publishing Kuala Lumpur, ‘My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then and Now’, was published and released nationwide on the 15th of December 2022.

Dato Dr Abdul Rahim Ramli, President of the Council of the Royal Court of Johor, who wrote the Foreword in My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then and Now, said, “Peggy Loh’s narratives gave me a sense of nostalgia, being a witness to the development of Johor and especially Johor Bahru growing up literally brick by brick. Her books will definitely rekindle the interest in the history of Johor and of personalities that shaped her destiny.”

It all started with the blog, My Johor Stories at www.peggyloh.com that was established in March 2011 to store stories first published in the Travel Times and Streets Johor, sections of The New Straits Times newspapers where Johor stories by Peggy Loh were first published and later on in The Iskandarian newspaper and e-paper column titled My Johor Stories.

My Johor Stories series author, Peggy Loh speaking at the final installment of My Johor Stories’ series book launch

As a true-blue Anak Johor, Peggy’s recollections of the Johor Bahru she knew, shared regularly in the Streets Johor section over the years that garnered following of readers who could identify with her stories. Her Johor stories were often supported by old Black & White photographs of Johor Bahru, captured by her dad who had a hobby in photography. These popular stories of Johor Bahru in a bygone era soon became known as her Grandfather Stories.

When Think City came to Johor Bahru, they discovered My Johor Stories and encouraged Peggy to apply for a Think City grant to do a book project and publish a collection of her Johor stories in a book. With the support of Think City Johor Bahru and MPH Group Publishing Kuala Lumpur, Book One was published in 2017.

‘My Johor Stories: True Tales, Real People, Rich Heritage’, was launched on 15th July 2017 and on the first week of its launch; this book went to the Number One spot in the MPH Non-Fiction Bestsellers List. This book stayed on the MPH Bestsellers List in the following consecutive weeks and months, and at the end of 2017, this title was counted among the Best of MPH in 2017.

The encouraging response to Book One and the support from Think City Johor Bahru led to the publication of its sequel, Book Two in 2018. ‘My Johor Stories 2: Interesting Places and Inspirational People’, featured stories of inspirational people in various Johor districts along with Heritage Traders who are still doing the businesses started by their forefathers.

It was important to document the family stories of heritage traders who established themselves generations ago, for the benefit of their future generations and to see how these businesses are still thriving in spite of the long lockdown periods due to the global pandemic.

‘My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then and Now’ aims to preserve Johor’s proud heritage and its collection of stories honours courageous people who took the bold steps to establish brands in Johor that have expanded nationwide as well as abroad. The Contents of Book Three has three sections:

SECTION 1: Proudly Johor

This collection of stories in Book Three also offers fresh insight into Johor history as well as our culture and heritage. Some stories even show how we can succeed with unity, visionary leadership, collective and selfless group effort and genuine collaboration.

  1. The Johor Area Rehabilitation Organisation (JARO) Story
  2. From seed to cup, My Liberica Specialty Coffee
  3. Tradition lives on at Sedap Corner
  4. The Art of the 24 Festive Drums
  5. The Kumpulan Perubatan Johor (KPJ) Healthcare Group
  6. The-making-of Iskandar Malaysia Social Hero Awards (IMSHA)
  7. Co-working Spaces by Infinity8
  8. Awarding-Winning High-Pole Lion Dancers

SECTION 2: Culture-Heritage

A collection of Peggy’s family stories was shared in the previous two My Johor Stories books under Memories and Book Three presents more Memories to encourage us to better appreciate our family ties and our roots.

  1. A Rich Heritage in Road Names
  2. Sultanah Fatimah of Johor
  3. Timeless Elegance of Baju Melayu Telok Belanga
  4. Legacy of the Japanese in Johor
  5. The First ICU in Johor Bahru General Hospital
  6. The Johor Bahru Toddy Shop
  7. The Johor Bahru Convent School
  8. A Peek Inside the Johor Baru Jail
  9. Once Upon a Time in Johor

SECTION 3: Memories

  1. Growing Up in Grandfather’s House
  2. Badminton Glory Days
  3. Johor’s Mejar Cina
  4. The Legacy of New Villages
  5. Unity through Lat Cartoons
  6. Tribute to Johor Society for the Performing Arts
  7. Glimpses of Old Johor
  8. Epilogue: Journey to My Johor Stories

‘My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then and Now’ is published by MPH Publishing Kuala Lumpur in two versions, retailed at RM50 for Hardcover and RM35.90 for Softcover, available from MPH bookstores nationwide and online from www.mphonline.

While MPH has closed their bookstores in Johor Bahru, MPH has given approval for the author to sell ‘My Johor Stories 3: Proudly Johor, Then and Now’ which will be available in Johor Bahru at My Johor Stories Roadshow events planned in the near future. Look out for more info on these exciting events, posted on social media via Facebook and Instagram.

Peggy Loh wrote travel stories for Travel Times, a pull-out section of The New Straits Times, rebranded as Life & Times Jom as their Johor-based writer. Her articles have also appeared in the now defunct southern section of The New Straits Times, first called Johor Buzz and later renamed Johor Streets.

She also contributed Johor culture and heritage stories to monthly issues of the official newspaper of Iskandar Malaysia, The Iskandarian, for a page dedicated to My Johor Stories.

Born and brought up in Johor Bahru, Peggy is a prolific storyteller with a passion to share her stories with locals in search of their roots and visitors eager to know more about Johor. Her stories focus on balancing valuable historical details with vivid nostalgic memories that readers easily identify with and which makes them feel as if they were also there.

My Johor Stories at www.peggyloh.com, a personal blog and a medium to store published stories, was launched in 2010 as a gift to her readers, enabling them to read previously published stories at leisure.

Connect with the author of My Johor Stories, Peggy Loh through Instagram, Facebook, Blog or email to write2peggyloh@gmail.com, call/WhatsApp at +6012 – 700 2977 or through her PR Agency’s email, grace@brandculturepr.com and PR Agency’s contact at +6016 – 415 9272.