At the stroke of midnight on 20 May 2002, the Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste became the first new nation of the 21st century. From that moment, those who fought for independence have faced a challenge even bigger than shaking off Indonesian occupation: running a country of their own. *Beloved Land* picks up the story where world attention left off. Blending narrative history, travelogue, and personal reminiscences, Gordon Peake shows the daunting hurdles that the people of Timor-Leste must overcome to build a nation from scratch, and how much the international community has to learn if it is to help rather than hinder the process. Family politics, squabbles, power struggles, old romances, and even older grudges are woven into life in this land of intrigue and rumours in the most remarkable ways. Yet above all, *Beloved Land* is a story about the one million East Timorese who speak nearly 20 different languages, and who are exuberantly building their nation. It is also about the East Timorese diaspora in Northern Ireland. Written with verve and deep affection, the book brings the character of Timor-Leste to life unforgettably.
Publisher: Scribe Publications