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A Malaysian publisher recalls a controversial novel and apologizes

After much online outrage, a local novel titled Darlingku Mr Cold Mafia will be taken off the shelves.

Social media users and readers criticized the book for romanticizing rape and grooming children.

Its publisher, Penerbitan Kaki Novel Sdn Bhd has since released an apology statement via Facebook while announcing the recall of the book from the Popular chain bookstore.

A statement explained that the writer of the romantic novel did not intend to promote elements of rape and that certain phrases were chosen based on the protagonist.

“We didn’t realise our mistake in using those terms had brought a different context of understanding to some out there.

“We’ve learned our lesson here and will make sure not to repeat it again. We will be more alert with our edits after this,” they wrote in the statement, adding that they have replaced the phrases with more appropriate ones in new copies.

The publisher also addressed allegations of the subjects of child grooming and paedophilia in the novel, explaining that it was a ‘flashback’ scene.

“It was a ‘flashback’ sequence between the hero and heroine when they were little and it was not a love-making scene.

“Although we respect each reader’s viewpoint, we understand the concerns they have,” they wrote.

Darlingku Mr Cold Mafia follows the love story between a 20-year-old bookworm named Nur Nadia and a 29-year-old mafioso and businessman, Tengku Adrian Haris.


The book which was published in May 2022, previously received backlash on Twitter and book catalogue website, GoodReads.

“This book doesn’t deserve a star. Shame on you author for writing such a terrible novel! Do you really think rape is a joke? Rape is a crime.

“This kind of softporn novel should be banned since the readers might be from young teenagers.

“I wonder how the book was approved for publication in the first place. The novel is such a turn-off and I didn’t even manage to finish it since it is so childish,” read a review left by user Ulatbuku on GoodReads.

Source: Borneo Post