The House on Palmer Road (Paperback)
Author: Si-Hoe S. S. & Sim Ee Waun
Illustrator: Lim Anling
Number of pages: 128
It is 1930s Singapore and war is raging in China and Europe. But for eight-year-old Sing and her nine brothers and sisters, life is carefree and fun at their wooden house in Palmer Road where they live with Mother, Father and Ah Seem. Join them as they go frog hunting, escape fierce guard geese, visit a 'coolie room', and head off on other exciting adventures in pre-war colonial Singapore.
This playful, fun-filled children's book is based on the childhood experiences of 83-year-old first time author, Si-Hoe S.S. who is the 'real' Sing. In the House on Palmer Road, young readers will fall in love with the large but lovable family, and relive a magical though tumultuous time in Singapore's past. Within the series of charming short stories, children will also gently encounter aspects of Singapore's history through vividly-described landscapes, snatches of overheard conversations among the grown-ups, and the many people they 'meet', from itinerant hawkers to coolies and night soil men.
Excerpt from the Book:
Down the dirt track beyond the bend at Mount Palmer were four or five warehouses that stood near a thick cluster of huge angsana trees. Their tall iron gates were always shut, and the buildings were always closed and silent. We had never seen lorries or people go there, and it was always dark in the deep shade of the angsana trees. From our driveway, it looked sinister. We never dared venture near...
...Until one afternoon when Mother was out on an errand, leaving Ah Seem at home to look after the babies. Father was away at work as usual. As I was playing in the driveway, Sixth Brother sauntered over. “Let’s go there and explore,” he said in hushed, secretive tones. He grinned cheekily and his eyes were bright with mischief. He pointed towards The Black Hole.