Haven’t bought gifts? Give your loved ones Pinoy books

Jerald Uy

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Shopping for Christmas gifts at the super duper last minute? Filipino-written books may just be what you are looking for!

PINOY AUTHORS TO THE RESCUE. Not enough time to get quality Christmas gifts for your loved ones? Head to the Filipiniana section of your favorite bookstore. Photo by Jerald Uy

MANILA, Philippines – It’s the day before Christmas eve. If you are on a last-minute shopping spree (and your favorite gift shops and toy stores already look like disaster zones in disarray), heading to the bookstore’s Filipiniana section may be the hassle-free solution. 

1) For your dad who always starts the day reading the newspaper and then gives a commentary: 

Hour Before Dawn: The Fall and Uncertain Rise of the Philippine Supreme Court

Author: Marites Vitug

Your dad may be wishing for lasting changes in the government. This book aims to drum up reform within the Supreme Court, which author Marites Vitug wishes to happen during the 18-year term of Chief Justice Maria Lourdes Sereno.

2) For your mom who can’t be bothered while she’s watching her favorite talk shows:

I’m Afraid of Heights (Or Why I Can’t Social-Climb)

Author: Thelma San Juan

The book contains 98 profiles of celebrities and politicians written by Philippine Daily Inquirer Lifestyle editor Thelma San Juan. Tell your mom she could finish reading the book after cooking your Christmas dinner. 

3) For your kuya who’s not good in getting a girl:

Pogi Points

Author: Stanley Chi 

Stand-up comedian Stanley Chi dishes out ways to decipher the unusually vague messages women make. Save your brother from the humiliation of being “basted” by giving him this book on how to be a hit with the girls.

4) For your ate who is fond of American vampires and British wizards:

A Bottle of Storm Clouds 

Author: Eliza Victoria

Maybe it is time to introduce your sister to the mythical creatures our country has. Eliza Victoria’s short stories feature a capitalist Makiling, a living city, rural zombies and other fantastic creatures that would show your sis that she is missing a lot by not reading Filipino speculative fiction.

5) For your pre-schooler bunso:

The Hunters

Writer: Zayden Ramos

Illustrator: Kajo Baldisimo

The Hunters is an illustrated storybook written by a 5-year-old. Backed by the amazing art of Trese’s Kajo Baldisimo, Zayden Ramos’ story about an expert mechanic packs wonder and action that any toddler will love.

6) For your lola who loves to cook:

Memories of Philippine Kitchens

Author: Amy Besa 

This book collects heirloom recipes from different parts of the country. The updated edition of Memories of Philippine Kitchens also includes the flavorful dinuguan recipe from the family of former TV news personality Margaux Salcedo and “Lola Anday’s Chicken Kinulob,” a recipe passed on to Tricia Tensuan, Enderun Colleges vice-president for admissions and external relations.

7) For your lolo who always tells you of grim stories about Martial Law:

Juan Ponce Enrile: A Memoir

Author: Juan Ponce Enrile

Reading the book will result to more bonding time with your grandpa. But be sure he has taken his medication, in case, he also sees contradictions in Enrile’s side of the story.

8) For your cousin who always runs out of cash:

Ang Pera na Hindi Bitin

Author: Eduardo Roberto

Sick and tired of helping your cousin who is always broke? It’s time to teach him about personal finance using a language that any ordinary Filipino can understand.

Here’s the trick I’ve learned to save time when shopping for books:

Go straight to the customer service desk of your favorite bookstore and give them the list of books you need.

The personnel of at least 3 major bookstores all initiated help in getting the books for me. It is not your fault when you are looking for a horror novel on the horror shelf but they placed it in the Filipiniana section because, they say, that’s where Filipino-made books end up, right?

Happy reading, everyone! –

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