Recommended reads: Books to curl up with for the weekend
TGIF! The weekend is here, but thanks to #reasons, you've found yourself with a blank calendar. So what can you do? Why, take that time to catch up on your reading, that's what!
These books we've chosen aren't heavy-duty. Instead, they're light-hearted—well, mostly—looks at the world we live in, past and present. And they'll keep you hooked until you find you're on the last page, looking for more.
Don't worry if you don't know what book to start with—we got you covered like an N95 mask.
Nurse Molly Returns. After spending years overseas, Molly Goh has returned to the Lion City to begin her new lease of life as Staff Nurse at the National General Hospital. However, Life manages to throw a few challenges along the way as she navigates through career and relationships, but good golly, Nurse Molly, it'll take more than that to keep her down!
Who should read it? Anyone who wants an entertaining look at what our frontline carers have to face daily—through the lens of author Katherine Soh's larger-than-life protagonist, of course.
What others have said: "Great insights into nursing. Concise and well written. Enjoyable!" (Goodreads)
Let's Give It Up For Gimme Lao! Born on the night of Singapore's independence, Gimme Lao is cheated of the honour of being Singapore's firstborn son by a vindictive nurse. Subsequently, his like takes on twists and turns that aren't always "fair" to him. So when his mum persuades him to become a politician, Gimme Lao reckons it's time for some payback—in whichever way possible. “I don’t aspire to be nice. I do what is necessary to get what I want.”
Who should read it? If you like satire and characters who get to you so much you love to hate them (and love them in equal amounts), then this is the book for you.
What others have said: "A richly layered, rip-roaring tale that narrates and critiques Singapore's great leap from Third World to First." (The Straits Times)
The Adventures of Holden Heng. Holden Heng is a young go-getter, but even he would never have survived Valentine's Day today. For one thing, his juggling of relationships with not two, but three different women would have left him scarred in this age of scrutiny, thanks to the omniscient observers online. But hey, this story is set in 1970s Singapore, and this classic comic realist novel not only details Holden's life, but also reveals social currents that transformed the Lion City.
Who should read it? Just about everybody who likes a good story and isn't afraid to let their imagination soar.
What others have said: "Immensely entertaining. A frank and fun assessment of sexuality and relationships that still feels fresh today." (The Sunday Times)
The Minorities. Four misfit friends share a flat in Yishun. This is not the start of a joke, but the setting of Suffian Hakim's second novel. The quartet is haunted by a pontianak but that's not all—they also have to help her return to her supernatural community. Can they navigate the path between the supernatural and the natural worlds, without going off the rails themselves? (Read the book to find out, lah)
Who should read it? If you like fun, engaging stories that leave you breathless from laughter, then you'll love this.
What others have said: Suffian's brimming enthusiasm carries the story with its universal themes of friendship and loyalty." (The Straits Times)
The Antibiotic Tales. This is the latest comic book by one of Singapore's top graphic novelists, Sonny Liew. Written together with Dr Hsu Li Yang, the head of the Infectious diseases department at NUS, it follows two different families (one in the present, another in the future) as they learn about the importance of antibiotics and why we shouldn't abuse this medical wonder. A second section compromising facts about this drug caps the comic.
Who should read it? Sonny Liew fans! And those who like comics but want to learn something important at the same time.
What others have said: "An informative comic that's educating." (Goodreads)
Best New Singaporean Short Stories Vol. 4. Sixteen storytellers weave tales about people all looking for that certain something to improve their lives. The trouble is, they end up treading that dangerous thin line between the light and the dark—and they have to choose which side they'd rather be on.
Who should read it? These are short stories, so it's great for people who find novels tl;dr, or only have enough time to read between MRT stops.
What others have said: "If you've either never read Singaporean literature, this would be a good place to start." (Wonderwall.sg)