Blogger Insider: Life stories from the blogger
As I am prepping for my trip back home (yes, I still call the Philippines home), I wanted to share books and stories set in the Philippines and also about the Philippines.
The sad thing is, I have not read a lot of these books so hopefully, I will rectify my mistake. Unfortunately, one of my problems is that I have a hard time reading in Tagalog, which is the Philippine national language. Yes, I can speak it, and yes I can understand it, but I actually have a hard time reading in Tagalog. Before you bring out your pitchforks and burn me at the stake, I learned Bisaya first. Bisaya is one of the dialects spoken by those who were born in the Visayas. And to be honest, I also have a hard time reading in Bisaya.
The first book I wanted to share is The Dumaguete We Know edited by Merlie M. Alunan which is basically about my hometown! It’s a short book and I’m not really sure what it’s about because the blurb kinda sounds like it’s a collection of poems? Whatever the case, I want to read this!
The second book is an anthology titled Feast and Famine: Stories of Negros by Rosario Cruz-Lucero. Based on the blurb, it sounds like it is delving into the history of the island where I was born from the Spanish colonial period to the post-Marcos era. It’s mostly stories about life in Negros Occidental, which is technically not where I am from because I hail from Negros Oriental.
The third book is one that I actually read! It is a very short story, about 2-3 pages what doesn’t entirely end in an HEA but I actually rated 5 stars! This is also written by a Filipina and as the blurb states: ushered the modern Philippine writing in English.
I have to say that I forgot the characters of this story because I last read this in 2006. I do know that is about a man in a love triangle (?). Anyway, he is supposed to be affianced to one lady but he loves another and he ultimately made the decision to marry his fiance. Ack, such a sad story but I read it at the time where this story was very close to what was happening to me at the time.
I’ve also read this book and I can read the title! This is written in Tagalog and is a compilation of blog posts published on bobongpinoy.com about growing up and going to school in the Philippines. I have to say that I could relate to the Bob Ong’s experience in school since I lived and went to school in the Philippines until I was 23. I actually own this copy and I might just read it again for the heck of it!
I would also be remiss if I won’t mention Noli Me Tangere (what do you know, it was published by Penguin Classics, too!). I had to read this in high school and I did not understand a word of it because the Tagalog was even harder to understand. Good thing someone translated it into English so I was able to get a copy and read it. Ahem.
This book was first written in Spanish because it was aimed at the Spanish who were occupying the Philippines at the time. It is the book that inspired the Philippine Revolution and it is also a love story. Although, spoiler alert, it does not end in an HEA. The second book, El Filibusterismo is more about revenge than love.
If you are a Filipino, have you read any of these books? Thoughts?
Do you read books about your country?
Has anyone read a book set in the Philippines? Any recs?
I REALLY want to know!