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Review: Top 10 books of 2014


The diversity and quality of new books that appeared on bookstore shelves in 2014 made readers in the Philippines immensely fortunate. Proving to be greatly popular among Filipinos and adopted by the Philippine publishers in a big way, the electronic publishing platform Wattpad flexed its muscles, leading to the wide release of print versions of their best-selling titles, the release of three motion-picture adaptations (“Diary ng Panget,” “She’s Dating the Gangster” and “Talk Back and You’re Dead”) and various television series. Expect more of the same in 2015. What used to be considered niche fare such as comic books, young adult and speculative fiction continues its march toward mainstream domination. Celebrities brought their own wattage to a wave of titles lit up with familiar names. In a year that saw a rising number of foreign authors visiting Manila, National Book Store’s first Philippine Literary Festival wowed fans by bringing in Amy Tan, Chang-Rae Lee and Eric Gamalinda. Filipino authors continued to be prolific and broke new ground all around. Now everybody seems ready to do even greater things in 2015, after a year that literally and literarily provided something for everyone, and proof that, yes, Filipinos do read—a lot. Here are the Inquirer’s selections for best books published in 2014 arranged alphabetically by title:

Posted: December 22nd, 2014 in Arts and Books,Editor's Pick,Featured Gallery,Headlines | Read More »

Stephen King’s real horror ‘Revival’


It takes a master of horror like Stephen King to take an ordinary, innocuous sentence like “something happened” and turn it into an intricate, effective device of enduring fear. After reading “Revival: A Novel” (Scribner, New York, 2014, 403 pages), you’ll never think the same way about that sentence.

Posted: December 8th, 2014 in Arts and Books,Editor's Pick,Headlines | Read More »

Amazing answers to crazy questions


What is the weirdest question you’ve ever been asked? Chances are, it’s nowhere as weird as the questions one finds in the best-selling nonfiction book “What If? Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions” by Randall Munroe (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, New York, 2014, 303 pages).

Posted: November 10th, 2014 in Arts and Books,Headlines | Read More »

Technology, humor and insight in Joselito de los Reyes’ ‘iStatus Nation’


Upon first inspection, “iStatus Nation” is quirky and charming, with the upper half of Joselito de los Reyes’ face rendered as a cartoon with speech bubbles floating over his head.

Posted: November 10th, 2014 in Arts and Books,Headlines,Lifestyle Stories | Read More »

‘Gone Girl’: From ‘chick lit’ to ‘chick noir’


Some books are so game-changing, they define, or even redefine, a genre.   Numerous authors have previously written about bad marriages that lead to disastrous results, but none come close to Gillian Flynn’s act of exposing the complicated couple Nick and Amy Dunne in the novel “Gone Girl” (Crown Books, New York, 2014, 555 pages). […]

Posted: October 13th, 2014 in Arts and Books,Editor's Pick,Featured Gallery,Headlines | Read More »