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Article  •  1 August 2022

 

Bachar Houli on writing a picture book, just in time for Father's Day

We spoke with Bachar Houli about his new children’s book, My Baba is the Best.

Father’s Day is fast approaching, and what better time for a new family-focused picture book?

My Baba is the Best, written by multiple AFL Premiership player Bachar Houli, is a joyous picture book that celebrates the special bond between fathers and their daughters.

We spoke with Bachar to learn a bit more about the book and why he wrote it.

On writing a children’s book

When you think of Bachar Houli, you probably don’t think of him as an author. Despite his footie success, however, the sports star has been keen to branch out into other spheres. ‘You’re only as good as what people make you out to be and all the opportunities that come your way,’ says Bachar. ‘It felt like there was a story to be told.’

While he might be famous, Bachar faces the same things all parents face. In writing My Baba is the Best, he hopes to remind parents and kids of the importance of spending time together. ‘We live in a time where parents can be very busy at work and the lack of communication or connection between father and daughter (or daughter and mother) can be lost,’ but with all the challenges facing children today, ‘we really need to be there for them,’ Bachar says.

He hopes that the book will serve as a reminder: ‘Simply spend time enjoying things that you can do together. Whether it’s as small as watching a movie on the couch or going out to the bush – whatever it may be.’  

Family storytelling

When Bachar told his daughters that he was writing a children’s book, they weren’t surprised. ‘We’re about storytelling,’ Bachar shares. While he and his daughters don’t necessarily read books every night, they share stories. Sometimes, Bachar tells his daughters stories about their family and where their names came from. Other times, he sits back and listens as his daughters take turns making up stories for him.

His hopes for the book

If nothing else, Bachar hopes that My Baba is the Best can serve as a reminder: ‘do the right thing, step away from your busy lifestyle and spend some time with your kids.

‘Every kid wants to spend time with their parents, it’s just about how much time we can invest in them,’ he says.

While the book features day-to-day activities that might seem small on the surface, Bachar notes that putting in that effort when kids are young can make all the difference. With that said, though, he isn’t perfect either. ‘I’ve still got a long way to go,’ he admits. ‘Sometimes when I do get lazy and my life is unbalanced, I need to remember to slow down and make sacrifices.’

Thankfully, he’s got the book to hold him accountable now. ‘This book is a good reminder for me,’ he says. ‘My kids throw it at me every now and then. They go, “remember the book.”’

In addition to the family aspect, Bachar also hopes that My Baba is the Best can open kids’ eyes to different cultures. ‘There’s a bit of faith-based stuff that’s directed towards my faith,’ he says, talking about the book. ‘But I want to open kids’ eyes and help them realise that there are different types of people out there and that they should respect everyone.’

While the faith-related scenes are reflective of what his family does, he hopes that presenting his own life as an example can help children understand and accept others.

Family, love, and understanding. ‘It’s the perfect Father’s Day gift,’ Bachar laughs – we couldn’t agree more!

 

Check out more amazing children's books for Father's Day.

Feature Title

My Baba is the Best
A joyous picture book celebrating the special bond between fathers and daughters, and the fun times they share – by multiple AFL Premiership player and inspirational community leader Bachar Houli.
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