Day 29's book is My Dad is a FIFO Dad. We've done our time in this household with the FIFO lifestyle, on roughly a 10-and-2 roster (FIFOers will get that). It had some advantages - I got lots of time to write, and some travel came out of it. But there were huge downsides too. This was all before Master A, and I can appreciate the added complexity with kids in the picture. This book, then, is aimed at fostering some coping strategies, and providing moral support for when Dad's away.
A few things niggled at me about it ... firstly, I hope there's a companion title called My Mum is a FIFO Mum ... I acknowledge that most workers on mine sites I worked at were men, but not ALL of them. The structure got a bit weird at the end ... and I'm not sure about promoting the idea that a parent works away because what they do is important ... I sort of felt that implied the family at home wasn't as important. When I was a kid my dad worked away, too (long before FIFO ... dad didn't come home nearly that often) and I think it was more helpful to think that it was just his job. And one other thing - while the book suggests kids write in a diary, or contact their dad on Skype, never did it suggest to write him an old-school letter. That's what I used to do - and those letters meant a lot to me. I still have some of them. It struck me as something special that FIFO parents and kids could do. There's long boring nights in camp. Have times really changed so much?
Anyway, the heart of this book is in the right place.
Master A's verdict: Paid attention to the pictures, but the words are prose (no rhyme or rhythm).
- Title: My Dad is a FIFO Dad
- Author/Illustrator: Jo Emery / Ann-Marie Finn
- Source: Borrowed from local library
- Publisher: Dragon Tales
What's on tomorrow? Library pick.