Happy Father's Day!
Raising a toast to our dads!
written by Lily Kong and illustrated by Jeanette Yap.
Fathers – the ones we look up to, the definitive authority figure in the early, formative years of our lives, and the ones who are there to guide us through the best and worst of times. Be it work or play, fathers tirelessly strive to raise us in the best environment possible, sparing no expense for their precious loved ones and sacrificing much more than they should in the process. As Father's Day approaches, we look at the various ways father figures may influence our lives through the perspectives of their sons and daughters.
In The Java Enigma, a story by Erni Salleh that was birthed from the various anecdotal misadventures that the author’s father recounted to her, we see the protagonist get sucked into an exciting adventure that takes her across Southeast Asia on a race to uncover her father’s secrets.
After missing her father’s funeral, Irin Omar finds her orderly librarian life with the Borobudur restoration project turned upside down as she inherits a safe deposit box containing an unknown item as part of her father’s will. Chasing answers across Asia and Europe, her historical knowledge and love for her father persists as she tries to uncover some of the archipelago’s biggest hidden secrets while discovering a few familial skeletons of her own. A story about coping with the loss of a parent and a journey of discovering one’s personal family history, this novel is rich in descriptions of many culturally significant Southeast Asian locations and brings readers on an exciting adventure that teaches acceptance and cultivates a love for our local region.
For some family quality time, the Emma and Ginger Series by Lily Kong and Jeanette Yap is a great read for both dad and daughters, that explores the trials and tribulations the child of a busy father goes through, and also the painful learning process every dad has to undergo to become better parents to their loved ones. What happens when your father is too caught up in their work to give you the care and attention you crave? Do you throw a tantrum? Pass the time by playing games and watching Youtube? Or maybe… make friends with your local tabby cat? Grow together with Emma and her dad as they learn more about each other and the world around them in this engaging read for early readers!
Finally, we have memorable father figures who always go above and beyond. Mr Tino Volumes I & II by Russell Molina and Mikey Marchan makes for a thrilling guy-turned-superhero read and charts the impact one good man can make on his society. Mr Tino is a 66-year-old sundry store owner, a devoted husband to his dementia-stricken wife and a loving father. One evening, his wife wanders outside and nearly gets hit by a truck if not for the superhuman strength suddenly bestowed on Mr Tino. As he comes to terms with his new powers, he learns that more children in his neighbourhood are mysteriously vanishing. He eagerly takes on the mantle of the vigilante that the community desperately needs. In other words, you could say that he becomes the community’s father figure — the protector of his local village who dispenses justice on the side to those who deserve it.
This Father's Day, let’s raise a toast to our fathers and celebrate all those who supported us through thick and thin!
Erni Salleh's dedication to her father that opens The Java Enigma.
Hey, a book will also be a nice companion to that toast! How about gifting something for dad to read? Try The Java Enigma, Emma and Ginger Series, and Mr Tino Volumes I & II. Or hit us up if you need more recommendations!