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Book review: Bebang Siy’s “It’s Raining Mens”


I feel like Bebang would appreciate this video more than the Geri Halliwell one.

Three years ago, Bebang Siy blew the doors wide open and let the public take a glimpse into her life with her collection of essays, It’s A Mens World. At turns funny, poignant, and nostalgic of a Manila now slowly disappearing and changing into something else entirely, It’s A Mens World quickly developed a following and even snagged awards and nominations along the way.

Now Siy returns with It’s Raining Mens (I feel like there should be a Hallelujah in there somewhere), a collection of her work that now extends beyond the personal essay. Sprinkled throughout the book are short stories, movie treatments, a radio play, and emails and letter between Bebang and her best friend, Alvin. Will readers end up being spoiled for choice with this new collection, or would they rather seek shelter from this unusual downpour?

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Book review: Bebang Siy’s “It’s A Mens World”

If you’re a regular teleserye watcher like I am, you’ll know that Philippine pop culture doesn’t have a lot of leeway when it comes to portraying your average Filipina. If you’re not the naive and yet extremely sexual ingenue from “Katorse”, you’re the vindictive femme fatale from “Rubi” — the classic Madonna/Whore dichotomy. I don’t know about you guys, but these two “types” get pretty tiring after a while.

That’s why it’s refreshing to comes across something like Bebang Siy’s collection of essays, “It’s A Mens World”. Written over the course of several years and submitted as a master’s thesis, Siy’s collection is a candid, sometimes funny, and sometimes bittersweet look at the life so far of a Filipino Everywoman.

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