The 33rd Manila International Book Fair took place last place at the SMX Convention Center last September 12 to 16. It was something I looked forward to since last year. I attempted to attend a couple of times last year but I always ended up being too late that they would no longer let me it. This year, I made sure to arrive early and have enough time to look around.
I went twice this year! The first time, I just wanted to look around. I was already to planning to attend a book signing on the last day but I was afraid I wouldn’t have enough time to look at all the booths. So I decided to have another night where I could just roam around without being constrained by the time and by the crowd. I even got in for free (because I’m cute, probably)!
The first night, I was shocked because I imagined astonishing discounts that would allow me to go home with dozens and dozens of books! But there were only 20% off and that’s not exactly an astonishing discount. An officemate, Kuya Abel, also said that the place was incredibly big and there would be tons of freebies but it wasn’t exactly that big and I didn’t get any freebies. So yes, I was a bit disappointed. Heh.
But one booth I loved was the University of the Philippines Press! There were so many books I love especially the anthology/mythology books but they were expensive and therefore, didn’t fit my budget. So I walked away with a heavy heart. But in one corner, I saw a “as low as P25” sign! I was so happy. I ended up buying 6 books for only P170! I was a happy banana. Hee.
It’s from Milflores Publishing and most of them are non-fiction and a compilation of works. Also, it’s all by Filipino writers! This year, I try to read as much Fil lit as possible. I’m already reading Floundering at 25, and I’m relating to everything she’s saying in the book. I’m just not sure if I like it. There’s something about the exposition of the lives of twentysomethings that throw me off. I just can’t place my finger on it.
Last sunday, I went back for the Trese book signing! I have already expressed my thoughts on the set of comics by Sir Budjette Tan and Sir Kajo Baldisimo here. I have already expressed my love for Alexandra Trese and how the comics popularize Philippine myths and legends. So when I heard that there’d be a book signing, I couldn’t NOT go. I was supposed to go with Cy but she got sick so I went alone. Huhu.
I only had the first book before the book signing but I made sure to buy the third book to have it signed. It’s my favorite among the four books so it’s only sensible that it’s the one that I have signed. Hee. I didn’t mind standing in line for a long time, though! I just grabbed some book from a shelf and started reading. When it was already my turn, I was so nervous because I never went to a book signing alone before! And everyone’s with someone so they asked for group pictures and didn’t stand on the little stage alone. But whatever, i was there to have my Trese books signed! They even drew on it. Heehee.
A few steps away from the Trese book signing, Jinri Park was also having hers! So yeah, there were tons of fanboys abound, even fanboys who are already fathers, obviously because they brought their kids along. Haha.
Jinri Park is so pretty! But she didn’t look too happy to be there. So I just took a quick photo and walked away.
Next to Jinri Park, Sir Pol Medina was having his own book signing! I wanted to fall in line and bought his latest book but I no longer had any money so I didn’t. He was so happy, though! I don’t know. Maybe Sir Pol just really has a smiley face? Hehe.
And to wrap up my book fair trip, I made a pre-order for J.K. Rowling’s book, Casual Vacancy, to be released next month. I didn’t know that I already had to make a full payment so imagine my shock when I learned that when they punched it in the cashier. LIKE WOAH YOU SHOULD HAVE TOLD ME FIRST. Good thing I had money with or else I would have walked away humiliated. Haha. I’m so excited for her newest book!
I’m excited for next year’s book fair. I do hope that next year I wouldn’t be too disappointed with the discounts. Or maybe I should lower my expectations a bit? Haha.