We Three is the title of  a memoir written by my good friend Noor Azlina Yunus (Joy) and her two sisters Jillian and Judith – the famed Hooper triplets of Feilding in the Manawati region of the North Island of New Zealand.

Azlina and I were colleagues in the Pusat Bahasa (later Faculty of Languages and Linguistics), University of Malaya in the late 70s and 80s. She left academia to join the publishing world where she enjoyed a flourishing career as writer/editor with the  Oxford University Press, Editions Didier Millet and later Periplus Publishing Group, leaving a trail of exciting titles and credits to her name.

But I remember Azlina not so much for her wonderful accomplishments at work  but for the congenial person that she is, and the friendships we’ve shared over the years. Yunus and Azlina were an amazing couple – always chirpy and smiling, always kind and generous, always loving and supportive! Without Yunus who is so dearly missed by family and friends, Azlina has remained stoical and steadfast, and still as determined as ever to pursue her interests in publishing and heritage.  

I’ve always wondered about Azlina’s family background and what has made her the person and personality she is. We Three leaves no stones unturned as Joy, Jillian and Judith unfold the mystery of their lives and loves; their joys and happiness; their upbringing and education; their values and principles! Of course there were sorrows and disappointments too but the Hooper triplets show little or no trace of remorse or cynicism.

The triplets keep as close together as the seas and the countries separate them in their adult lives! They are as similar as they are different in the families they’ve raised and the careers they’ve chosen. Looking at the wonderful collection of pictures enlarged no doubt by their celebrity status my suspicions are confirmed! Reading their tales and anecdotes I’m absolutely certain that a closely- knit family and strong family values maketh the women they are and the men they married!

Azlina’s KIWI heritage has not made her less of a Malay and a Malaysian! In fact, together Azlina and Yunus personified Malay ethnicity to the letter, displaying their collection of Malay artefacts and objet d’art to perfection in their old-world Malay home. But Azlina’s English accent has remained clipped in parts and drawled in others – as the New Zealand variety of English is, and her “Yeop” term of endearment for Yunus in the Perak Malay dialect is near perfect! 

Joy, Jillian and Judith – it’s a pleasure to read about “You Three” and to know what nice people you are!



2 Responses to “”

  1. 1 spotthebloggers
    August 21, 2009 at 10:34 pm


    Selamat menjalani ibadah puasa Ramadhan 1430H

  2. August 22, 2009 at 1:59 pm

    Lovely! And thank you for participating in the Let’s Read the Quran 2 campaign. Please visit http://rantingsbymm.blogspot.com/2009/08/lets-read-quran-2.html for information on the campaign. Selamat Berpuasa!

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August 2009
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