Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Before We Leap into February . . .


(Before you begin, please know that I beg your tolerance if this post comes out badly. I just surfaced from a Big Bang Theory marathon and I sound like Sheldon in my head. Which is all wrong, I know, because he's far more elegant with words than I will ever be.)

Well, it seems that my turn to pick a book has come around only a couple of months after I first had it.

Now, I don't want to defy the arrangement of the alphabet or anything, but as a relatively new member myself, I'm willing to trade months with either Jamie or Dorian now, so that another newbie can get her feet wet faster! =)

Of course, one could argue that the alphabet is The Alphabet and that I have to choose a book whether I like it or not . . . in which case, I just have one question:

Do you want to read something else Filipino or should I go for something more "international"?

PS--Happy Candlemas, everyone!


BettyDuffy said...

Take the bull by the horns E! Lead us where you will.

mrsdarwin said...

Hear, hear!

(The oracle of word verification says: tampa. Which is where I'd like to be.)

Enbrethiliel said...


*tentatively approaching the snorting bull*

My first choice was The Woman Who Had Two Navels by Nick Joaquin, for two reasons: first, Joaquin is simply my favourite Filipino writer EVER; second, there are a couple of flashbacks in this novel to the events and developments at the end of our November read, Po-on.

But I probably shouldn't have even mentioned it because I just checked Amazon and it's only available used for $24--which is a lot to pay for even a great novel when it's printed on newsprint. =P

But the point is that I love Joaquin . . . and anyway, his short stories are much better. I found two of them online:

May Day Eve (Some typos, but nothing too bad)

The Summer Solstice

They're certainly not among his happier stories, but they're typical of his fascination with the way the pagan and the Christian have been fused together in Philippine culture. (And for "full disclosure," I guess I should say I can't stand the modern celebration of Valentine's Day and that these dark stories about marriage are the angry opposite of romantic. Happy February!)

Then there is The Mass of St. Sylvester, which is my current favourite--and a great example of the way he blends reality and "fantasy" (which could be anything from ancient legends coming alive in the modern age to dreams and hallucinations). It's not available online, though, so I'll have to scan (or find some other way to encode) my copy and mail the text to everyone.

*laughs at the bull that didn't know what hit him*

BettyDuffy said...

I like the idea of short stories--since it's a short month.

Should I put those up on the syllabus?

Enbrethiliel said...


Yes, please. =)

I'll work on a post to introduce them properly.

Melanie B said...

Sounds good to me. I've got myself underwater again with too many requests that came in from the library all at once.

Plus for me this will be a very short month. My mom arrives Feb 21. God willing, Anthony will arrive Feb 24. And then who knows whether reading will be happening or not.

Enbrethiliel said...


Since it's such a short month, let's just stick to May Day Eve and The Summer Solstice. =)

I just realised that both are set in sweltering tropical summer months and that most of us are still feeling wintry. We'll see what happens, aye?