Definitely, my big, big frustration since the day I discovered my penchant for reading books is to buy not only new best-selling international books but also local ones written by award-winning Filipino writers. (Who wants to get stuck in a time warp? ) I still cannot afford their astronomical prices despite that I’ve got my job , so I just slobber over them in book stores while thumbing through their appealing paperbacks.
I rarely splurge on one book when I have enough budgets. Poor old me! I could be kleptomaniac for sure. Jeez whiz! In fact, I could spend 350 pesos , the common price of the books , on more than 7 imported books at a second-hand book store. At least they are on the list of 1001 Best Novels of All Time. Bitter!
Green with envy , I leave the book stores chanting yada yada yada in the chambers of my mind, hoping that the pantheistic forces conspire with me that those books I crave be on sale.
Eventually, my silent wish has come true. Recently, when my friend fond of reading Philippine books had told me about the local books the National Book Store branch is selling on sale- it may be part of its yearly clearance -I marked it on my plan last Saturday. I was aware of that I had to scrimp and save, but this desire had kept on eating me.
1. Bulosan : An Introduction with Selections by E. San Juan , Jr.
If someone asks me what Filipino classic he/ she wants me to recommend, definitely, so far, Carlos Bulosan’s America is in the Heart. This novel is based on his life story as a countryside boy and eventually as an immigrant in America during the American colonialism. So, his accounts are heart-rending and inspiring , for Bulosan showed his determination and hope he had showed from being a farmer boy to a writer despite the travails he had gone through.
Bulosan mentioned in his book the stories and essays that redounded him to fame. I can read some of them in this book. I can’t wait. ^^
2. Jungle of No Mercy : Memoir of Japanese Soldier by Hiroyuki Mizuguchi
I love reading memoirs. When I found out that it has something to do with a Japanese soldier’s memoir in the Philippines , I remembered my a-la-Lola-Basyang grandfather who always told us about his juvenile life during the Japanese occupation of the Philippines. So,this book could be a time machine I could ride back to the past. Yaahaa!
3. The Secret of the Cave and other Stories for Young Readers by Ed Maranan
Its paperback picture is so intriguing that I was like a child eager to know what the aboriginal boy draws in the cave wall all about. I read and rated it with 3 stars. I’m still assimilating it.^^
4. Danton Remoto’s books
I am now a big fan of Danton Remoto. Before I disliked his ways of publicity in the media considering that his advocacy is about our rights, but upon reading his Gaydar, there is a method to his madness after all.
a. Pulotgata: The Love Poems
I want to explore Remoto’s godsend talents more. I read and rated it with 4 stars. I’m still assimilating it.^^
b. Bright, Catholic- and Gay
Reading Remoto’s essays on social issues , notably homosexuality in the Philippines is addicting. I am currently reading it now. But I still can’t somehow bring myself to read it on the bus to work since its paperback is about two Davids holding hands with wings flapping. ( Blushing)
My friend only lent me this , so I want to have my own copy since Remoto’s writing skills struck me in awe.
I’m enjoying reading local books now which I , of course, must do to show our nationalism. Actually, my desire to read books on spirit of nationalism has been awoken since I read Celso Al. Carunungan’s Like a Brave Man ( Alas, I dunno where on earth it has been . Besides, Goodreads does not have its records) ; then, Candy Gourlay’s Tall Story.
There are some books in National Book Store I wish to read more beyond exorbitance. As of now , all I have to do is to bind time.
“ When you want something, all the universe conspires…”
Happy reading to everyone! ^__^