A rough guide to the Manila International Book Fair


Three days to go until the Manila International Book Fair!  A lot of people have been asking me for tips about the Manila International Book Fair, so I decided to create this (unofficial) guide  based on what I’ve seen over recent years.

I’ve been attending the MIBF for five years running now, covering events, shopping, and just generally enjoying the flurry of bookish activity around me. And every year, the exhibitors offer something new, and there is always a different lineup of special events to look forward to.

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Reading in the 21st century


Reading never goes out of style, even in the age of technology.

In the August 1894 issue of Scribner’s magazine, an article by Octave Uzanne, predicted “The End of Books,” proposing that in the 20th century, the printed page will be replaced by “storyographs,” patented cylinders containing recordings of books, and writers replaced by “Narrators”  that read stories aloud for the recordings. Uzanne imagines today’s libraries transformed into “phonographotecks” or “phonostereoteks,” repositories for the “storyographs.” He also imagined portable players that he called “pocket phono-opera-graphs.”

While Uzanne’s predictions almost accurately cover audiobooks, ebooks, mp3 players, and personal ebook readers, he was wrong on one count: the introduction of these technologies did not herald the end of books, but rather gives the 21st century person new ways to enjoy the printed page, enhancing the reading experience for the page-turner.

mibfThe Manila International Book Fair lists the top reading technologies, proving just how relevant reading still is in the 21st century.

As the Manila International Book Fair, the paramount event of the Philippine book industry, marks its 30th anniversary this year on Sept 16-20 at the SMX Convention Center, it once again welcomes book lovers to celebrate it celebrates the written word in all its forms.

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Back to the Manila International Book Fair

Twenty more days ’til the Manila International Book Fair (MIBF): five straight days of books, books, and more books,  enough to drive a book lover to madness!

I always look forward to this annual event, ever since I was in third grade, when I first went to the MIBF on a field trip with the school Reading Club.

Even back then I was already a voracious reader, and the MIBF was such a magical place — I had never seen so many books all in one place!

My friends and I happily spent the day poring over all sorts of books, going from booth to booth, strategizing on how we could best spend a couple of weeks’ worth of pocket money. And after we had settled on our books, we made the rounds again, this time to collect freebies from the various booths,  chase down the mascots, listen to a story or two, watch some cartoons, and of course,  take note of books we planned on begging our parents for as soon as we got home. Continue reading “Back to the Manila International Book Fair”