Monday, July 28, 2014

PSA: Trip To Tagaytay and Alternate Cast 12 Cover

Trip to Tagaytay
 Arnold Arre's graphic novels have always been among my favorites.

There is just something magical and wondrous about his works. Not only are they reminiscent of Philippine mythology and days of Martial Law, but they also speak of humanly love and bittersweet memories.

Of all the books I haven't yet read of Arre, it has to be Trip to Tagaytay. It's the one book I didn't get from bookstores, when I was trying to complete my collection of his books. This was mostly due to the fact that it was published in 2000, a long, long time ago.

I have almost completely given up finding a copy of this, so you can just imagine my gladdened heart when I received word that Trip to Tagaytay will be reprinted this year!

When Kat of Nautilus Comics sent me an email about this development, I really couldn't rein in my happiness. I immediately contacted a few of my other friends who were Arre completists, and joyfully imagined walking through the Bayanihan Center doors this Saturday to get myself a limited edition copy of this work.

Because yes: limited copies of Trip to Tagaytay will be available at the Nautilus Comics booth at this year's Indieket in Bayanihan Center, Pasig on August 2, 2014. (Here's the FB event page for it.)

If you stumbled on here wondering what exactly Trip to Tagaytay is about, here's the blurb provided:

For the first time in over a decade, multi-awarded Arnold Arre, the local comic industry’s golden boy, will be re-printing Trip to Tagaytay under Nautilus Comics. A love story set in the future, Trip was first printed in 2000 and won the Manila Critics Circle National Book Award.

Trip to Tagaytay gives a speculative glimpse of what the Philippines will be like years from now, showing how the country’s unique culture and quirks will mingle with futuristic technology, creating a tomorrow both novel yet also strangely familiar. Yet the story also talks about the timelessness of love and the country’s history, all framed in an electronic love letter between a young couple. Trip is Arre’s most personal work, being basically a 40-page illustrated love letter to his then-girlfriend and now wife, Cynthia.

Besides this, though, they will also be releasing a variant cover by Harvey Tolibao of the 12th issue of Cast, a young-adult comic series by Jamie Bautista on the adventures of a barkada in a musical.

These two are special releases that will be only available on the day of the Indieket itself.

I'll definitely be dropping by the Indieket to check these out, so maybe I'll see you there. Or, perhaps, in a trip to Tagaytay?

Arnold Arre’s Trip to Tagaytay and Harvey Tolibao’s Cast 12 variant cover will be available only at the Nautilus Comics booth in Indieket on August 2, 2014 at the Bayanihan Center, Pioneer St., Pasig City, from 10 am to 7 pm.

For more details, please contact Rhea Bautista at
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Friday, July 4, 2014

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Note: This review may contain spoilers.

This is a very interesting life story of Christopher, a boy who is autistic. He is very smart and he got an A level grade for the A maths. He wanted to solve the mystery of the death of Wellington, who is Mrs. Shears dog. He has a family with a caring father and a lost mother.

The book is very straightforward and direct to the point, and this is because Christopher, the protagonist, is very straightforward and direct to the point. He likes things in order, like train tables, but does not like the colors yellow and brown. When he sees four red cars in a line, he believes that it will be a Super Good Day, while seeing 4 four yellow cars in a line will be a Black Day, and he will not speak to anyone on a day like that.

Besides maneuvering the quite halting style this book has been written in, you may not find it easy to read about Christopher, especially when you try to imagine how the people around him must feel. (Christopher himself does not like to imagine, but he knows that White Lies are truths that are not said completely.) His family is torn apart by his curious behavior, like when he reads difficult books or watches videos about undersea life, while getting in trouble at school for punching a classmate. He himself is an oddity, but he is logical enough to survive in the real world - probably better than a non-Special Needs adult.

This slice of life tale, said in the voice of an autistic yet gifted teen, is a look into the world of some people we probably do not understand due to their conditions. It is a refreshing perspective which brings not only understanding, but also a lot of heart. A number of surprises happen here and there, from the discovery of family secrets, to Christopher repeatedly threatening people with the saw blade on his Swiss knife, so it really makes for an amazing story.

Truly an inspiring look into what goes on in the heads of the people we describe as "autistic".

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time
Read this book now! Here's The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time on Amazon (for Kindle).

The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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