THE OPENING this week of the country’s biggest book fair comes with the announcement of the nominees for the annual National Book Award.
From Sept. 13 to 17, between 10 a.m. and 8 p.m., book lovers can browse or buy a tome or two (or more) at the annual Manila International Book Fair (MIBF) at the SMX Convention Center, Mall of Asia complex. And this year there will be even more books on the shelves.
Now on its 38th edition, this year the MIBF will occupy two floors at the convention center – a whopping 11,980 square meters compared to previous years’ 9,130 sq.m. – which means more books, from fiction to nonfiction to textbooks. This year there will be almost 200 local and international exhibitors.
The fair is not only a market place for books, but also a venue for book signings by upcoming writers, mostly of Wattpad authors who are published by local houses like Psicom and Adarna House. Precious Hearts Romances is also doing a series of book signings.
Meanwhile, one of the MIBF’s exhibitors, the National Book Development Board (NBDB), has announced its list of best book finalists in various genres including comics, poetry, anthology, art, food, and journalism, among others.
The NBDB has been honoring the local best reads since 1982 and its awards are given to “the best books written, designed, and published in the Philippines every year.”
Together with the Manila Critics Circle, NBDB short-listed the books in the following categories:
• Short Fiction (English): Of That Other Country We Now Speak and Other Stories by Charlson Ong; The Axoloti Colony: Stories by Jaime An Lim; Mariposa Gang and Other Stories by Catherine Torres; and, The Stories So Far by Jessica Zafra
• Short Fiction (Filipino): Sanga sa Basang Lupa at iba pang kuwento by Jim Pascual Agustin; Alternatibo sa Alternatibong Mundo: 13 Meta/Malakuwento by Edgar Calabia Samar; Troya: 12 Kuwento by Joselito delos Reyes; Sangkatauhan, Sangkayahupan: Mga Kuwento by Alvin Yapan; Wagi/Sawi: Mga Kuwentong Luwalhati at Pighati by Rolando Tolentino and Rommel Rodriguez
• Fiction-Novel (English): The Music Child and the Mahjong Queen by Alfred Yuson, and Wounded Little Gods by Eliza Victoria
• Fiction-Novel (Filipino): Toto O. By Charmaine Lasar (PageJump Media)
• Nonfiction Prose (English): Navel by Rica Bolipata-Santos; Writing Naked: A Memoir by Arnie Quibranza Mejia; Bamboo Bed by Weldon M. McCarty; Lessons from Nationalist Struggle by Jose Dalisay, Jr.; and, Marcos Martial Law Never Again by Raissa Robles
• Nonfiction Prose (Filipino): Sulyap Sa Aking Pinanggalingan by Roque J. Ferriols, SJ; Selda Dos (Manila City Jail) by Bobby V. Villagracia; Araw/Gabi: Mga Aporismo ng Pagkautal at Pagkaulol/Mga Aporismo ng Pagtang at Pagtunganga by Rolando B. Tolentino; and, The Lait Chronicles by John Jack G. Wigley
• Poetry (English): Partly Cloudy by Simeon Dumdum, Jr.; Artemio Tadena (This Craft, As With A Woman Loved: Selected Poems) by Gemino H. Abad and Myrna Pena-Reyes; Faultsetting: Poems by Joel Toledo; and, Snail Fever: Poems of Two Decades by Francis Macansantos
• Poetry (Filipino): Banayad: Mga Tula by Rowena Festin; and, Kurap sa Ilalim by Mesandel Virtusio Arguelles
• Poetry (Waray): Taburos Han Dagat by Victor N. Sugbo
• Anthology (Bilingual): Hoy, Boy! A Festschrift for Delfin Tolentino, Jr. by Ben Tapang and Grace Celeste Subido; Remembering/Rethinking EDSA by JPaul Manzanilla and Caroline Hau; BIEN! A Festchrift in Honor of National Artist Bienvenido L. Lumbera by David Jonathan Bayot, Jaime Oscar Salazar, and Johann Vladimir Espiritu; and, Elie: An Anthology by Caroline Hau, Katrina Tuvera, and Isabelita Reyes
• Anthology (Filipino): Batang Rizal at iba pang Dula by Christine S. Bellen
• Anthology (Waray): Susumaton: Oral Narratives of Leyte by Merlie M. Alunan
• Graphic Literature: Melag by Bong Redilla; After Lambana by Eliza Victoria and Mervin Malonzo; Kikomachine 12: Mandirigma ng Tadhana by Manix Abrera; Strange Natives: The Forgotten Memories of a Forgetful Old Woman by Paolo Herras
• Literary Criticism/ Literary History (English): Filipinas Everywhere: Essays in Criticism and Cultural Studies from a Filipino Perspective by E. San Juan, Jr.; Slivers in the Sky by Ma. Ailil B. Alvarez; Myth and Writing by Jose Neil C. Garcia; Migrations and Mediations: The Emergence of Southeast Asian Diaspora Writers in Australia, 1972-2007 by Jose Wendell Capili
• Essays (English): To the People Sitting in Darkness by Jose Victor Torres; Basagan ng Trip by Lisandro Claudio; Notes for the Filipino Playwright by Malou Jacob; and, Motherless Tongues: The Insurgency of Language Amid Wars of Translation by Vicente L. Rafael
• Best Translated Book: Shri-Bishaya by Ramon Muzones and Maria Cecilia Locsin-Nava; Tatlong Dula Adaptasyon by Rody Vera; Typewriter Altar by Marne Kilates; Pahagunong: Book 4 Sugidanon (Epics) of Panay by Alicia P. Magos, Anna Razel Limoso Ramirez, and Federico Caballero; Jaime Gil de Biedma in the Philippines by Alice Sun-Cua, Jose Ma Fons Guardiola, and Wystan de la Peña
• Best Book on Food: In High Spirits, Tropical Wines of the Philippines by Arturo G. Pacho; Kuisina Gastronomika by Richmond Victor Ejanda; The Expat Kitchen by Blance Gallardo; Via Mare: 40 Years by Glenda Barretto; and, Philippine Food, Cooking and Dining Dictionary by Edgie Polistico
• Best Book on History: Central Banking As State Building: Policymakers and Their Nationalism in the Philippines 1933-1964 by Yusuke Takagi; Feeding Manila in Peace And War 1850-1945 by Daniel F. Doeppers; Occupation 1942-1945 by Benito Legarda, Jr.; Metroimperial Intimacies: Fantasy, Racial-Sexual Governance, and the Philippines in the US Imperialism, 1899-1913 by Victor Roman Mendoza; and, Orientalists, Propagandists, and Ilustrados by Megan Thomas
• Best Book on Science: A Field Guide to Flight: Identifying Birds on Three School Grounds by Amado C. Bajarias; The Philippines: A Natural History by Oolin Rees; and Hotspot, Cool Country: Biodiversity in the Philippines by Almira Gilles
• Best Book in the Social Sciences: Jose M. De Mesa: A Theological Reader by Jose de Mesa; Religious Festival in Contemporary Southeast Asia by Patrick Alcedo, Sally Ann Ness, and Hendrik M.J. Maier; Out of the Shadows: Violent Conflict and the Real Economy of Mindanao by Francisco J. Lara, Jr. and Steven Schoofs; Sibod: Ideology and Expressivity in Binanog Dance, Music and Folkways of the Panay Bukidnon by Maria Christine Muyco; and, Keywords: Essays on Philippine Media Cultures and Neocolonialisms by Rolando B. Tolentino
• Best Book in Journalism: Divide by Two by Luis V. Teodoro; and, Peryodismo sa Bingit: Mga Naratibong Ulat sa Panahon ng Digmaan at Krisis by Kenneth Roland A. Guda
• Best Book on Leisure; Pinoy Manners: A Modern Guide to Delicadeza by Joy Lumawig-Buensalido; Kwentaxi 2 by Mae Paner; and, #TagaCallCenterAko by Safronio L. Tomandao III
• Best Book on Professions: Daya Privacy and Cybercrime Prevention by Henry Roel Aguda, Maria Francesa Montes, and Byan Dennis Tiojanco; The Balance Concept in Nursing: New Perspectives in Survival and Health by Daisy M. Rodriguez; Gusto Kong Maging Voice Talent by Pocholo Gonzales; Winning: Management Lessons Outside the Classroom by Management Association of the Philippines
• Best Book on Art: Music in the Zarzuelas of Severino Reyes by Helen Samson-Lauterwald; Performing Catholicism: Faith and Theater in a Philippine Province by Sir Anril Pineda Tiatco; The End of National Cinema: Filipino Film at the Turn of the Century by Patrick F. Campos; and, EIGA: Cinema in the Philippines During World War II by Nick Deocampo
• Best Book Design: Marcos Martial Law Never Again designed Felix Mago Miguel; Motherless Tongues: The Insurgency of Language Amid Wars of Translation, designed by Amy Ruth Bucharon; Colonial Manila, 1902-1912: Three Dutch Travel Accounts, designed by Karl Frederick M. Castro; World Heritage Sites and Living Cultures of the Philippines, designed by Melody Gocheco Wigforss; and, Blood, Sweat, Hope and Quiapo, designed by Rick Rocamora