Juna and Appa

By Booklist

Juna loves Saturdays when she can spend the day at her father’s dry-cleaning shop, helping him and enjoying his company. One day, Appa is preoccupied, and Juna has to keep out of his way. The warm steam of the pants presser makes her dreamy, and her imagination takes flight. In her dream, she is helping her father find a customer’s missing jacket. When she tries to help Appa in reality, though, he brushes her aside in his own worry about finding the jacket. Gentle watercolor illustrations mirror the text and capture the close and caring relationship that Juna and Appa share, as well as her feelings of vulnerability when she feels she isn’t needed. In the author’s note, we learn that the story has some autobiographical elements, and that this is a tribute to Park’s parents and the happy memories she had in their dry-cleaning shop, even while they were preoccupied with work responsibilities. This lovely message will resonate with empathetic readers everywhere.