37th MIBF Checklist

14 September is a big day for book lovers! It’s the first day of the annual Manila International Book Fair (MIBF)! Running until 18 (Sunday), MIBF is the biggest book event in the country as local and foreign publishers sell most of their titles at discounted price!

For those who want to update their bookshelves with the latest local children’s and young adult books, we compiled a list of the 2016 releases. Just click the name of the publisher or the book to find more information.

Happy book hunting!

 

MIBF

 

ADARNA HOUSE

 

Links: price list, free MIBF tickets & book signing schedule, Anino Comics

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ANVIL

 

Link: website

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ATENEO DE MANILA UNIVERSITY PRESS

 

Link: website

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BOOKMARK

 

Links: website, book signing schedule

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LAMPARA HOUSE

 

Links: website, events

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OMF LITERATURE (HIYAS)

 

Links: other new titles, free MIBF tickets & book signing schedule

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TAHANAN BOOKS

 

Links: free MIBF tickets, website

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UNICEF CHILDREN’S FIRST

  • Anita the Duckling Diva | picture/storybook
  • Ang Bata sa Basket | picture/storybook
  • Ang Dalawang Haring Siga | picture/storybook
  • Ang Sabi ni Tatay, Ang Sabi ni Nanay | picture/storybook
  • Nina Wonders, Nina Asks | picture/storybook
  • Yaya Niya, Nanay Ko | picture/storybook

 

Available at NBS, Fully Booked, Precious Pages, and other bookstores.

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UNIVERSITY OF THE PHILIPPINES PRESS

 

Link: website

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VIBAL (CHIKITING BOOKS)

  • Alpabeto sa Bayong | picture/storybook
  • Bilangan sa Karagatan | picture/storybook
  • May Gulong na Bahay | picture/storybook
  • Si Julie Gandionco at ang Kaniyang Panaderya | picture/storybook
  • Tunogzzz | picture/storybook

 

Links: website, press release, brief descriptions

Bernalyn Hapin Sastrillo

Ipinagdiriwang natin ngayon ang paglabas ng kauna-unahang aklat pambata ni Bernalyn Hapin Sastrillo! Pinamagatang Detective Boys of Masangkay: Ang Mangkukulam, isa itong nobelang tiyak na kagigiliwan ng mga bata at matandang mambabasa.

Kinausap natin si Berna tungkol sa kaniyang unang nobela at buhay bilang manunulat.

 

Photo

 

Hi, Berna! Sabik na kaming mabasa ang libro mo. Puwede mo ba kaming bigyan ng patikim sa kuwento nito?

Naka-set noong 1990s, ang Detective Boys of Masangkay: Ang Mangkukulam ay tungkol sa tatlong binatilyong gustong maging police detective at gayahin ang iniidolo nilang karakter sa isang anime show sa TV na si Detective Conan. Nakatira sina Uno, Junior, at Thirdy sa Masangkay, isang maliit na barangay na may sunod-sunod na kaso ng mga nawawalang hayop – at si Aling Binang, ang pinaniniwalaang mangkukulam sa kanilang lugar, ang pangunahing suspek. Isang araw, misteryosong nawala ang napakasikat na genius na bata, na mas kilala sa buong barangay bilang si Shino Kid. Kung maso-solve ba ng DBM ang misteryong ito, sundan n’yo sila sa libro!

 

Susundan talaga namin. Ikuwento mo na lang siguro kung paano nabuo ang librong ito?

Dati ko pa gustong magsulat tungkol sa kabataan ko. Batang ‘90s kasi ako, at tingin ko kabilang ako sa henerasyong may pinakamalayang kabataan. Kaya nung nakita ko ‘yung call ng PBBY na Kabanata Workshop para sa mga nobelang pambata, naisip kong magsulat ng isang nobelang naka-set noong 1990s. At dahil fan ako ni Detective Conan noon at naniniwala akong may angking curiosity ang mga bata na mag-solve ng mga palaisipang kaso,  bumuo ako ng isang detective story.

Noong nakapasok na sa workshop ‘yung manuscript ko, tinulungan ako ni Sir Allan Derain at Sir Nanoy Rafael na maibagay ‘yung detective story sa Philippine setting. Hindi naman talaga kasi parte ng pop culture natin ang detective stories, hindi tulad sa Japan at USA kung saan kinalakihan ng mga bata ‘yung mga kuwento ng Hardy Boys, ni Nancy Drew, at ni Detective Conan. No’ng tinanggap na ng Adarna House ang manuscript ng nobelang ‘to, si Ms. Ani Almario at Ms. Kata Garcia naman ‘yung naging mga gabay ko para mabuo ‘yung kuwento. At heto na nga ang Detective Boys of Masangkay: Ang Mangkukulam, handa nang ibahagi sa mga bata ngayon ang isang kuwentong magpapasilip sa kanila sa kabataan ng mga ate, kuya, tita, at tito nila.

 

Detective Boys of Masangkay - Ang Mangkukulam cover

 

Ang DBM ang kauna-unahan mong librong pambata. Paano ka napunta sa larangan ng panitikang pambata? At ano pa ang iba mong isinusulat?

Sa totoo lang, wala naman akong formal background sa pagsusulat ng nobelang pambata. Ang alam kong isulat noon ay pelikula at dula, pero dahil hindi ako natitigil sa paghahanap ng workshops na makakatulong pa sa paglinang ng pagsusulat ko, nakarating ako sa PBBY Kabanata Workshop. Doon ako na-expose sa children’s literature. Mas marami akong nakilalang children’s lit at YA authors, kaya ngayon, ang dami ng librong pambata sa bookshelves ko. At laking pasalamat ko sa naging mentors at co-fellows ko sa workshop na ito dahil natuto ako mula sa kanila kung paano magpatakbo at magtahi ng isang kuwentong pambata.

 

Pero alam naming mahilig ka talagang magbasa, kaya gusto naming malaman ang mga naging paborito mong librong pambata, local man o foreign?

Harry Potter series ang isa mga paborito kong librong pambata, kahit hindi ko pa ito tapos. Fan din ako ng Janus Silang series ni Edgar Samar at ng Tall Story ni Candy Gourlay. Sa YA books naman, nakahiligan ko ‘yung ilang nobela nina John Green, David Levithan, at Ned Vizzini.

 

JS1

 

Ano namang uri ng mga librong pambata ang gusto mo pang makitang ilabas sa ating bansa?

Umuusbong na talaga ‘yung children’s at YA literature dito sa bansa. Nakakatuwa na marami ng kabataang ngayon ang nahihilig magbasa ng mga nobela. Kaya, gusto ko pang makakita ng mas marami pang nobelang pambatang gawa ng Filipino authors na may setting na Pinoy na Pinoy – kung saan makaka-relate ang mga bata ngayon at mga naging bata noon.

 

Ano ang aabangan namin sa iyo?  At may mga balak ka bang likhain para sa mga bata?

Dahil sa isyu ng pagbabago ilang bahagi ng Philippine history na dulot ng social media, gusto kong makapagsulat ng picture books o nobelang pambata na magpapaalala sa kanila kung ano ba talaga ang totoong nangyari noon. Bilang manunulat ng librong pambata, tingin ko meron akong malaking responsabilidad para tulungan ang mga kabataan na magkaroon ng access sa katotohanan – kahit pa ibabahagi ko ‘yun sa kanila sa pamamagitan ng isang kuwento.

Pero bago tayo pumunta sa mga balak ko pang isulat, dito po muna tayo sa kauna-unahan kong librong pambata. Sa September 18, magkakaroon ng book signing sa booth ng Adarna House para sa Detective Boys of Masangkay: Ang Mangkukulam. Sana magkita-kita po tayo doon!

 

Aabangan talaga namin ‘yan! Maraming salamat ulit sa panayam, Berna!

12:01

XZN Sting ProfileWe let Filipino kids and teens review books written for them. First up is Sting Asistores, a student from the Philippine High School for the Arts.

Writing his first comic book review, Sting is an incoming Grade 10 student who has been reading comics since he was five. His favourite superhero has always been Batman and his favourite comic book is Knightfall by Doug Moench.

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Published by Anino (2016), an imprint of Adarna House Inc. for comics and graphic novels, written by Russell Molina, and illustrated by Kajo Baldisimo, 12:01 features the story of the teen band Edji-Voice. The action starts when the authorities found them on the streets beyond the midnight curfew imposed during the Martial Law era.

 

Oppression and Resistance

Some information crucial to the story was presented to the reader using deep imagery – forcing the readers to think. This method is likely to elicit varying interpretations from readers. While there are advantages to a story with no definite plot, this might be problematic for a book which aims to illustrate a critical period in Philippine history.

The transitions to sub-narratives were admirable as well. The author slowly gives out hints before introducing the sub-narrative itself. These sub-narratives also lead readers to a critical understanding of Martial Law by weaving together narratives of the oppressed and tortured.

The author also composed verses presented as songs written by the band. The verses are rich in metaphors and symbolisms about the Marcos regime. This allows readers to get a sense of what it was like to constantly fear abuse from the government.

 

1201 Cover

 

A Lesson of the Past

Writing the dialogues using the particular slang of the time period helps readers picture what life was like in the Philippines during the Martial Law era. Curfew, for instance, held a lot of meaning. This particular use of language also helps character development. Through particular quirks in speech, characters gain their own personalities.

Though set in the past, the characters are depicted in ways that prompts modern readers to resonate with them. The deliberate portrayal of the characters as band members is an example. This raises the comic’s appeal to younger readers. At the same time, it could also pique their interest in the past.

 

1201 (kajo2)

 

Realistic Illustration

The illustrator’s clear, unique, and detailed style captures the realism that the story wants to portray, save for some cartoonish details used to emphasise expressions. The gloomy background drawings are also very rich and interesting.

The illustration and the text also really work together to deliver the story. The flow of the panels in some parts though was confusing. For instance, there is a continuous left to right movement, then a left to down and back to right movements. Other readers might see this as a way of reflecting the characters’ movement, especially in the section where the band is escaping from the police. It just doesn’t work for me, though.

 

1201 (Kajo)

 

Martial Law for Millennials

The book really gives readers, especially Filipino teenagers who didn’t get to experience Martial Law, a glimpse of what may have happened during that time. It exposes the brutality of the regime and what it used to do to people through the band members’ individual narratives in the story.

The book enlightened me on what happened during the Marcos Regime. It is informational enough to get me curious about whatever happened during Martial Law and what drove millions of people to revolt in the streets of EDSA. It showed me how it was like when Filipinos cared so much about each other and how much they wanted the same thing. It reveals Filipino nature and could lead readers to discernment on one of the many meanings of being a “true Filipino”.

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Images are from Kajo Baldisimo’s Facebook account.

Dinosaur Pop-up Activity Book

Isa marahil sa mga di-gaanong inilalathalang uri ng aklat pambata sa ating bansa ang mga interactive book. Ito ang mga aklat na nangangailangan ng pakikilahok ng mga mambabasa, bukod sa pagbabasa ng teksto at ilustrasyon. Ilan sa mga halimbawa nito ang flap books, pop-ups, at touch-and-feel books.

Ang Dinosaur Pop-up Activity Book (Adarna House, 2006) na isinulat at iginuhit ni Jomike Tejido ang isa sa mga hindi malilimutang interactive book na inilathala para sa mga batang Filipino. Kilala si Jomike Tejido sa paglikha ng seryeng Foldabots Toy Books at mga aklat pambata na hindi lamang nagsasalaysay, kundi naghihikayat din sa mga mambabasa na makilahok sa ibang paraan.

 

IMG_20160421_012840

 

Nabubuhay na mga Dinosaur

Itinatampok ng aklat ang limang dinosaur, at mayroong maiikling pangungusap at talatang sinasabi ang batayang impormasyon tungkol sa bawat isa. Madaling maunawaan ang mga ito dahil sa simpleng paraan ng pagkakasulat.

At kapag nagupit at naidikit na ang mga bahagi ng bawat dinosaur, nabubuhay ang mga ito! Makatotohanan pa ang ilustrasyon ng mga dinosaur, na ang isang bahagi ay nagpapakita ng panlabas na hitsura habang ang kabila ay ang kalansay. Mayroon ding mga nakatutuwang pagpapatawa sa ilang paglalarawan sa mga katangian ng mga dinosaur.

Ngunit ang mas nakamamangha ay  kung paano pinag-isipan ang pagiging pop-up ng aklat mula sa kung ano lamang sa panahong iyon (at marahil, sa ngayon) ang kayang paraan ng paglilimbag ng mga aklat dito sa bansa.

Sa kasamaang palad, ilang taon na ring ‘patay’ ang Dinosaur Pop-up Activity Book!

 

IMG_20160421_013026

 

Buhayin ang Dinosaur

Kaya sana ay magkaroon ng bagong edisyon ng Dinosaur Pop-up Activity Book. Bukod sa marahil pag-update ng mga impormasyon (kung mayroon mang kailangan), mainam din na ibahin ang tigas at uri ng papel at pag-isipan pa ang pagkakaayos ng mga pahina (dahil mayroong lamang kaunting kalituhan kapag hindi pa nagugupit at naididikit ang mga dinosaur).

Ang mas kailangang baguhin siguro ay ang pagkakasulat dahil mayroong mga paggamit ng pandiwa na hindi ganoon madulas pakinggan. Tingnan, halimbawa, ang deskripsiyon sa brachiosaurus.

 

IMG_20160421_012951

 

Sana ay muli ngang buhayin ang Dinosaur Pop-up Activity Book. At mas dumami pa sana ang mga interactive book na likha ng mga Filipino para sa mga batang Filipino. Hindi ba’t nakatutuwang makakita rin ng pop-up ng mga katutubong hayop natin o touch-and-feel ng iba’t ibang habi o lala natin?

Si Lola Apura at Si Lolo Un Momento

Ang búhay ng isang lolo at isang lolang mag-asawa na maraming pagkakaiba ang ibinibida sa bagong aklat ng Adarna House. Pinamagatang “Si Lola Apura at Si Lolo Un Momento” (2016), kuwento ito ni I.S.A. Valdez at may guhit ni Vanessa Tamayo.

 

Wall BG

 

Magkaibang Nagsasáma

Masasalamin pa lamang sa kanilang mga pangalan – Lola Apura (madali) at Lolo Un Momento (sandali lang) – ang pagkakaiba ng dalawang tauhan. Nakatutuwa ang pagpapangalang ito dahil hindi ba’t karamihan ng mga lolo at lola natin (hindi na marahil ng mga bata sa kasalukuyan) ang may pangalang Espanyol?

Ngunit sa kabila ng mga pagkakaiba, maayos na nagsasama ang mga tauhan. Ayon nga sa huling dalawang linya:

  • “magkaiba man sa kilos at itsura,
  • Palaging nagtutulungan at palaging masaya!”

 

Ang mga linyang ito ang bumubuod sa napakalinaw na daloy ng buong aklat. Tiyak na kapaki-pakinabang ang kalinawan ng temang ito sa pagtuturo ng mga salitang magkasalungat. Napakadali kasing makita ng mga mambabasa ang nais iparating ng aklat. Sa kabilang banda, ginagawa ng kalinawang ito na patag ang takbo ng buong salaysay.

 

Si-Lola-Apura2_large

 

Magaang Ilustrasyon

Hinuhuli ng minimal na ilustrasyon sa kabuoan ng aklat ang gaan ng salaysay. Madaling makita ang pagkakaiba, halimbawa, sa pangangatawan ng dalawang tauhan. May mga salungatan ding makikita sa espasyong ginagalawan ng mga tauhan, tulad ng layo at taas ng mga bagay.

Mayroon ding mga pasimpleng pagsingit ng mga nakatatawang bagay, tulad ng mga tinik ng isda sa pahinang inilalarawan ang kasabihang “Ang naglalakad nang matulin,/ kung matinik ay malalim.”

Sinusubukan ding hulihin ng pabalat na ilustrasyon ang tema ng kuwento, kaya ginamit ang stoplight. Kilala itong talinghaga upang ilarawan ang pagmamadali (lungtian), paghinto (pula), at pagitan (dilaw). Tamang-tama ang lungtian para ilarawan si Lola Apura, ngunit akma ba ang pula kung pagdahan-dahan naman at hindi paghinto ang katangian ni Lolo Un Momento?

 

Si-Lola-Apura1_large

 

Pinakapangunahing tagumpay ng aklat na ito ang pagtatampok ng isang lolo at isang lola bilang pangunahin at tanging mga tauhan sa isang aklat pambata. Sa mga akdang pambatang nabasa ko, madalas na ginagamit ang punto-de-bista ng isang bata upang ipakita ang búhay ng matatanda. Ipinapakita, kung gayon, ng aklat na ito ang isang posibilidad na puwedeng lamanin ng mga aklat pambata.

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Mula sa Adarna House online catalogue ang pabalat at ang mga halimbawang pahina.

Market Day!

I am market hopping today!

Join me as I discover the different markets in Southeast Asia through Adarna House’s latest offering, Market Day! (2014). The book is a collaboration of ten illustrators from ASEAN member countries.

 

Market-Day

 

First up is Brunei’s Pasar Gadong night market. Here, Safiah provides us with a glimpse of their market by introducing us to the various items sold in every section of the pasar, such as durian, keropok lekor (fish cracker), tongkey (barbecued chicken tail), and air kausar (a kind of drink). This page could be improved by adding more personality to the way the characters’ faces and actions were illustrated.

From Brunei, Market Day! brings us to Cambodia where we meet Jorani. It’s her first time to go to the market. Through her eyes we see an array of local goods such as Khmer rice noodles, palm sugar cupcakes as well as the country’s native woven cloth. I only wish that the native names of these items are provided; only the Kroma native cloth is labeled. The inanimate objects in the market are also better illustrated than the human figures.

The next stop is a market in Java (Indonesia). The illustration of local wares and scenes in this spread is particularly vibrant. The use of colors in the scenes where Ratri, our guide, buys vegetables and hides behind batik textiles stands out. Items found in the market are also beautifully illustrated and labeled, such as the gasing (toy top), celengan (money bank), and serabi (sweet pancake). Ratri and the other human characters also evoke a happy mood.

 

indonesia

 

After Indonesia, we head to a village market in Laos where we meet Tata. Unfortunately, we only get to see few items and most of them are not labeled in their own language. The illustrations would also see marked improvement if they were made consistent; only the bamboo rice box has a face.

Market Day! then takes us to Malaysia where Jinn leads us to the pasar. The different parts show us that Malaysia is really a multi-racial country – Uncle Chang’s chicken stall (Chinese), Samad’s parent’s vegetables stall (Malay), and Muthu’s granny’s spices and flowers stall (Indian). And the coolest thing is that Jinn is friends with all of them, implying that these races live harmoniously. The illustrations are also alive and have a 3D vibe. The frame showing some of Malaysia’s breakfast food stands out the most.

Next, Kaung Tsai brings us to the Bogyoke Aung San Market in Yangon (Myanmar). There are a lot of interesting items in the market such as the Buddha statues, yoke thé marionettes, cotton bags, lacquerware, mohinga rice noodles and fish soup, as well as jewelry, but some of them are not labeled. The illustrations are colorful though they could be better. The scene where Kaung Tsai is standing along an aisle in the market, highlighted by a yellow light, is weak since the items are not clear and not labeled.

From Myanmar, we head to the Philippines. The illustrations of the market are attractive. Various sections of the market are introduced and the items found in them are labeled. And the page promotes green living by showing that our guide Isko and her mother bring a bayong and an eco bag, and that they ride the e-tricycle on their way home.

Next up is Singapore. The strong colors and the placement of the sections of the pasar are overwhelming. The middle part features, for instance, the bakeshop, tailoring shop, and the fruit stall all under the seafood stall. Giving names for the vendors, such as Uncle Lim, Mrs. Aziza, and Auntie Sivas, on the other hand, makes going to the market a personal experience. The kid narrator, however, has no name.

Then the tour takes us to Thailand where Asnee shows us some items found in a floating market, especially the durian which appears several times in the entire book. The spread provides us with a glimpse of the typical Thai market though I only wish that more parts and items were shown. The illustrations, on the other hand, are cute because of the use of bright colors.

 

vietnam

 

Our last stop is Vietnam where we meet Phuong. The spread has three strengths. One, the story flow is numbered. Two, the texture and details in the illustrations are superb. The image of the halved papayas in the second section is a proof of this. The colors used are also friendly to the eyes.  Three, the spread has parts that touch on their history, such as how the Vietnamese resorted to pickling to overcome food shortage in the past.

Overall, Market Day! can serve as a good introduction to young readers to what is similar and unique in the ways of life of countries across Southeast Asia.

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Photos are from the Adarna House online catalogue.