A rough guide to the Manila International Book Fair

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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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Last Order sa Penguin

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A couple of years ago, some friends of mine were raving about the University of the Philippines Press publication Last Order Sa Penguin by Chris Martinez (book #113 for 2009, #19 for the Diversity Challenge – Filipino), containing the script of a play with the same title.

I don’t read a lot of plays because I prefer prose, but I was in the mood for a short, light read so I picked up this book.

Last Order Sa Penguin (roughly translated for the benefit of my international  readers: Last Order at the Penguin Cafe) is a two-act play about five friends nearing their thirties: the cheerfully gay Tuxqs, the problematic Harlene, the sex addict Tess, the social climbing Dyna, and the druggie Mario, who all meet up at the Penguin Cafe in Malate.

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