Nominated by:

The National Library of Malaysia, Kuala Lumpar

Publisher of nominated edition:

MPH Publishing, Malaysia

Mama’s Maze

Agnes Ong      

Fifteen Year old Lin has to deal with the stigma of having a mentally ill mother at home. She also has to put up with bullies. Her only true friend is sixteen year old martial arts student Sam. Just as she loses all hope that her mother would ever recover, Lin finds a way into an imaginary world in her mother’s mind and meets with its strange inhabitants –including the characters in her mother’s stories. And two of them have their eyes on Lin. Lin discovers that her mother is trapped in a maze in this fantasy world. Despite life threatening dangers, she ventures deeper into the world with Sam’s help to save her mother. Will they succeeded ?

About the author

Agnes Ong Is a freelance writer who writes for small businesses when she’s not writing fiction. Coping with an unknown nerve condition all her life, she finds solace, escape and revelation through writing. She hopes that her works of fiction will console, excite, delight and inspire others to live beyond their limitations. Her short stories have been published in Love in Penang, an anthology of short stories by Fixi Novo; Amok: An Anthology of Asia-Pacific Speculative Fiction; and Rambutan Literary, an online and digital literary and arts magazine dedicated to showcasing Southeast Asian literature and art.

(from publisher)

Librarian’s comments

The story delves into the life of Lin Tam, a 15-year-old girl, who is the main protagonist. Focus is on the angst of this teenager who is trapped in a lonely and unhappy life: she is an only child with just one person, Sam, to call a friend: she became a recluse in school when her one attempt to confide in a friend led to her being traumatized by the cruel taunting of her peers for having a ‘looney mother’. Her mother is claimed by medical experts to be mentally unstable,  and deemed insane by the neighbours; her father is stressed trying to juggle work and taking care of an ill wife and a teenager; Lin feels helpless watching her mother’s erratic behaviour, wanting to help her recover and be her old self again. Young adults will surely relate to some of he problems faced by Lin.

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