The Malta Independent 5 March 2024, Tuesday
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You have to read it to believe it

Sunday, 5 November 2023, 11:05 Last update: about 5 months ago

‘Bilkemm Jitwemmnu!’ L-ewwel volum. Author: George Cremona Publisher: Merlin Publishers / 2023. Pages: 32

How good can you get at making tea after you've made three million cups? How do you keep up with 36 penfriends or a collection of 10,000 key chains? What does boiled jellyfish taste like? Did you know there used to be a race for the elderly in Mdina? And what feelings overwhelm you when you see a huge crowd at the Floriana Granaries, chanting Xemx, wisq sabiħa ..., when you know this song was written for you?

Everyone has a unique story to tell, and few understand this better than George Cremona, the author behind Bilkemm Jitwemmnu! (L-ewwel volum) - a brand new publication from Merlin Publishers. For the past several years, Cremona has delved into the lives of ordinary people from all over Malta and Gozo, bringing to the surface treasures in the form of exceptional, curious and captivating tales.

Cremona's own incredible journey began in 2018 when he was invited to produce and host a radio programme on Calypso 101.8FM. While brainstorming ideas for the show, he remembered a phrase his grandma Mari liked to repeat as she recounted her life anecdotes. "In every person there's a true tale, made up of almost unbelievable stories."

This idea evolved into two educational radio series, Ngħidu Kelma (2018-2020) and Vi jew Va (2020-2023), where Cremona interviewed people with extraordinary stories to share. These series brought to life hundreds of remarkable stories, all echoing the wisdom of nanna Mari's words.

Recognising the value of preserving these fascinating stories beyond the airwaves, Cremona set out to immortalise them between the pages of a book (or two). Bilkemm Jitwemmnu! (L-ewwel volum) is a colourful mosaic of quirky tales that will make you smile, marvel or shake your head in disbelief - and you won't be able to resist turning the page for just one more story.

With a flexible cover that combines the elegance of a hardback volume with a lightweight and convenient design, this book can be enjoyed without worrying about damaging its spine. Most of the stories are complemented by intriguing photos, including historic ones - some even sourced from private archives - adding to the book's attractiveness and making it an ideal gift.

Bilkemm Jitwemmnu! (L-ewwel volum) is now available in all bookshops and can be purchased online directly from Don't just take our word for it -read it to believe it!

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