The Rough Guide to the 31st Manila International Book Fair

The past couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of activity, and before I knew it, voila — it’s now the eve of the opening of the much-awaited Manila International Book Fair, the biggest book event in the country!

Now I know a lot of you have been waiting for the rough guide to this year’s book fair like the one I posted last year. A bit of the background — the nature of my work requires me to attend the Manila International Book Fair year after year (contrary to popular belief I  don’t actually get to shop until the last few days!), and this is the sixth year running now. While I generally make my rounds, I do have some top picks for the must-see booths.

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Are you ready for this?



The Manila International Book Fair is set on Sept. 15-19 at the SMX Convention Center! Woot! Woot! (*happydancing*)

Mark your calendars, bibliophiles (and start saving your shopping money), as the biggest and longest-running book fair in the Philippines turns 31 this year. For three decades now, MIBF has been a one-stop shop for local and foreign publishers, wholesalers, retailers, book lovers and collectors, librarians, authors, and publishers’ representatives. It has also continuously contributed to the reading awareness of the Filipino by being the venue for book launches, dialogues with readers, and other book-related activities that reach out to a wide audience.

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The Hunger Games LARP (Live Action Role Play)


After Harry Potter, it was hard for me to imagine myself getting all worked up over another book series… until I read The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (read my review to find out why).

I was skimming through the special events listings of the Manila International Book Fair when something caught my eye: The Hunger Games Live Action Role Play (LARP),  set on the last day of the book fair, sponsored by Scholastic, Inc., National Book Store in partnership with New Worlds Alliance.

Now I normally don’t go to the last day of the book fair because I’m all shopped out by the time Saturday rolls around, but I made sure to be there this year, even though I’d read Catching Fire well past midnight the night before, because I just couldn’t put it down, and ended up red-eyed with all the crying and desperate to fast forward to 2010 when the third book is set for release (Aieee!!!).

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MIBF highlights


I can’t believe the 30th Manila International Book Fair is finally over, and that I have to count twelve whole months until the next one. I love this year’s book fair loot, and while a couple of specialty book stores sat this book fair out, I think it served well to highlight local publishers and smaller booksellers.

While I’ve been to the book fair almost every day of the event for five consecutive years, I must say that getting to share it with the readers of this blog has made this year’s book fair extra-special. I hope my posts were helpful to those attending the book fair, and to those away from Manila, I hope you got a peek into the book fair experience.

Here is one last post, with photos of other highlights of the five days of the MIBF.

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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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