Last August, as part of my participation in the country’s Buwan ng Wika celebration, I included books by local (Filipino) authors in my Required Reading list. It has since then been my resolve since then to endeavor to read more books by local authors. To be honest, most of the Filipino books I’ve read so far are those required readings in high school, and that one particular phase I had while in college reading Tagalog pocketbooks to pass away the time. 😉
Right now, though, I must confess, that I do not read much of Filipino books and somehow I feel (a bit) guilty. This reality is actually due to my difficulty of comprehending Filipino words. Please don’t judge, but here in my place where the language used is commonly the native dialect — Hiligaynon — and English, somehow reading stories in Filipino is a bit of a struggle for me. Not that I don’t actually understand Filipino, but that it takes much effort for to read and understand it compared to English.
It’s a good thing that more and more Pinoys have written stories in English as well, I am more than ever motivated to read them as a show of support and loyalty. 😀
And so, as part of this resolve, starting today, I will keep track of the Filipino books I’ve read through this feature, Pinoy Reads.
Lumayo Ka Nga Sa Akin by Bob Ong
This is my second Bob Ong, the first one being Stainless Longganisa which introduced me to the wit and humor of this popular author (or authors?) whose real identity is still an enigma to its readers.
Why did I pick this book as (one of) my Pinoy Read for August? I wanted a popular author and book so that I won’t be disappointed too much, and so far Bob Ong delivered well in this fiction slash social criticism. When I read the back blurb, I expected a satire on the love stories most Pinoys fancy reading nowadays, considering the fact that the cover is actually an imitation of the popular Tagalog pocketbooks, PHR Romances.
But was I in for a surprise! Lumayo Ka Nga Sa Akin is indeed a satire, but not of Tagalog pocketbook stories, but of the Filipino culture. I am impressed most especially with Bob Ong’s take on the Filipino’s TV and movie-viewing habits. I must say that because of this book, I have decided to ditch watching prime-time soap operas altogether. I agree with him (or them?) that we don’t get educated at all with what the TV offers us these days. Too much telenovela indeed don’t help in making us better.
Divided into three parts, Lumayo Ka Nga Sa Akin is witty and humorous, typical of Bob Ong, but most of all, it is an honest critique of Filipino society and if one wants to become better and more practical, then this book is for you.
Ito Na Siguro Ang Pinakamahabang Title Ng Isang Libro Na Ginawa Sa Pilipinas At Nagmula Sa Munting Facebook Page Ni AkoPOSIJAYSON Na Walang Maisip Na Pamagat by Jayson G. Benedicto
(That will be the last time I will have to write down that title! Tsk.)
For non-Filipinos, the title is loosely translated as “This Might Have Been The Longest Title Of A Book Made In The Philippines And Came From The Humble Facebook Page of AkoPOSIJAYSON Who Can’t Think Of Any Title.”
Sorry if that was a lousy translation.
Who is Jayson Benedicto? I don’t know.
Why did I buy this book? I also don’t know, except that it was displayed right at the entrance of National Bookstore and the loooong title actually caught my interest. And since it costs only a hundred pesos, I decided to give it a try.
You know what, for a hundred pesos, this book is worth the price. You get a few good chuckles, or laughs, depending on your sense of humor. It is a quick and easy read, even if it’s in Filipino. It contains essays of the author’s experiences, tips, musings, and realistic observations of his surroundings as a Filipino. Most of what is written are not really that new anymore, but I love it that the book is honest and really downright funny.
Or maybe, it’s just me.
And my lousy sense of humor.
I love this book, really.
5/5 stars. For a hundred bucks, you really get what you’ve paid for. 😀