Last month I posted a review of Lorette Roberts’ beautiful book, Sketches of Sai Kung (Blacksmith Books, 2013). This week I bought her earlier book, Sketches of Soho: Scenes from the Backstreets of Old Hong Kong (Blacksmith Books, 2012).
The Soho book is just as beautiful as the Sai Kung one. On my last trip to Hong Kong, I walked around Soho, an area that was just coming into its own when I lived in the territory back when Elgin Street looked like this.
Back then it wasn’t unusual for a group of expat friends to ring me with an invitation to dinner because someone we knew was flying into town for a few days. Soho was usually our destination. Sketches of Soho brings me back to that scene, which seemed posh compared to my modest life across the harbor and up near the China border.
Lorette Roberts has a great eye for detail. Her drawings beautifully portray the little things that make Hong Kong special: the old metal mailboxes, little outdoor stalls, potted gardens, and intricate door and window treatments.
This book makes a perfect gift for someone who lives or lived in Hong Kong, hopes to visit some day, or just enjoys gorgeous art books.
Lovely review, Susan. It may not surprise you to know that I was working at the very first restaurant in Soho back in 1996, the date of your photo! I am struggling to place its location. That old street sign is probably gone, and those orange litter bins disappeared with the Urban Council, so it seems like a very long time ago.
Susan Blumberg-Kason says
I think I knew you worked in Soho back then. I do remember going to a Middle Eastern restaurant in Soho in the fall of 1996, but the name escapes me.
Stuart Beaton says
I enjoy gorgeous art books, but no bugger ever sends me any!
Sounds like it’s great – your kids are so lucky that you share them with them.