Book review: E. L. James’ “Fifty Shades of Grey”

Just in case you guys weren’t aware, “Fifty Shades of Grey”, E. L. James novel of billionaire Dominants and the women who love them, is really, really popular. Vintage bought it for a reported seven-figure sum, and Universal and Focus Features have bought the movie rights for an undisclosed amount of money. Which only means one thing:  big bucks.

And it’s a phenomena that hasn’t just been happening in the United States either. Here on our very own Catholic shores — where anti-RH Bill and anti-Anti-Gender Discrimination Bill Bienvenido Abante has been protesting the “satanic” Lady Gaga — the most scandalous erotica of the season is constantly out of stock. I just asked the customer service people at the National Bookstore in SM Manila and they could only find one copy — in Davao.

Obviously, this book has got everybody and their grandmothers hot and bothered. And since I am a notorious follower of fads with no mind of my own, I checked the book out to find out for myself what the buzz was all about.

Continue reading Book review: E. L. James’ “Fifty Shades of Grey”

Ronreads interview: Kate Evangelista

If you haven’t done so already, the story that I did on Kate Evagelista came out yesterday on the paper that I work for. It outlines the journey she had to publication, and some advice she’d like to share with other young writers looking to break into the scene internationally.

But just like a lot of the interviews that I do, there’s also quite a bit that doesn’t make it onto the printed page — damned space constraits! So here’s the entire transcript of that interview, with all the other parts left in!

(Warning for spoilers!)

Continue reading Ronreads interview: Kate Evangelista

“Trese” and “Elmer” giveaways!

I was supposed to put this up during Free Comic Book Day, but due to my being an incorrigible scatterbrain I promptly forgot all about doing so.

BUT! I have now remembered, and I am inviting one and all to participate while I give away these signed copies of Budjette Tan and Kajo Baldisimo’s “Trese” as well as Gerry Alanguilan’s “Elmer”!

Let me quote myself from a few months ago:

“What do you guys have to do then? Since this is my first second fourth time doing this sort of thing, I thought it would be wise to pattern the process after young adult author Michelle Zink‘s own contest rules.

All you guys have to do is to post a link to this post on your preferred social network, then leave a comment on this very same post with a link to your post featuring the link. I sincerely hope that that horrible string of words has not discouraged you guys from joining yet. Doing so will get you ONE entry.

However, if you want a bigger chance at winning, you get ONE more entry for every person that you convince to follow me on Twitter (@tristantrakand) or read this blog. The person you refer also gets ONE entry, just as long as they tell me on Twitter or in the comments section of this post who referred them.

Your comment tallying the number of entries you have should look like this:

  • Posted link (on preferred social network) = 1 entry
  • Referred (x) number of people = (x) entry/entries

Unfortunately, this contest is only for readers here in the Philippines, as I can’t yet afford to ship stuff halfway around the world. Third World living, y’all!”

I’ll be using to pick out the winners for this giveaway. The top name on the list gets gerry Alanguilan’s “Elmer”, while the next two gets Budjette Tan and Kajo Baldisimo’s “Trese”

Contest runs until June 1, 2012. Winners will be announced around June 3. Good luck!


Book review: Robin Lim’s “Butterfly People”

If you read Robin Lim’s biography, it’s hard to imagine her having time to do anything else aside from delivering babies in such areas as Bali, Aceh,  Yogyakarta, and Haiti. What she does is pretty much a full-time job, and you can’t really blame her if she doesn’t have time for anything else.

Of course, she’s an exceptional enough person to multitask. Not only has she written on maternal health, she’s also been writing poetry and even a full-on novel. It’s entitled “Butterfly People”, and it’s basically a fictionalized account of her life and her family’s history from the pre-war era to the present time.

Is “Butterfly People” going to be as exciting as Robin Lim’s actual life? Or is truth going to turn out to be much more engrossing than fiction?

Continue reading Book review: Robin Lim’s “Butterfly People”