Showing posts from August, 2014

"The gods are futile guests of literature"

"Sometimes I feel like there's a tendency--even amongst Filipinos--to view the Philippines as a footnote on the world stage. Yet there's so much that is unique and beautiful in Philippine culture, if only we would take the time to learn it. Philippine mythology has much to offer the world. This anthology, we hope, has opened a doorway. We invite you to step through it." ~Paolo ChikiamcoThis is an anthology that has made me even prouder of my cultural roots, particularly when it comes to a Filipino's ability and capacity for myth-making, and the eleven short stories (plus a supplement comic story) that comprise this volume are testaments to that quality. I absolutely love it when a book manages to not only pleasantly surprise me but also cast a spell on me while reading it and Alternative Alamat knows exactly how to weave magic in the prose of each story and how best to wield its power to entice and hypnotize anyone who reads it.

Each story in this collection is a…

"We live in a haunted world"

I used to be the literary editor for my college paper about three years ago, and I decided that the literary folio's theme is going to be about our fear and fascination of monsters. I maintain that the monsters that plague our lives are mostly products of self-creation; a mere metaphor for our tortured or unsatisfying way of life. In that collection, the stories also got to feature literal monsters, ones that fuel nightmares and hunt us, demanding for blood. I mention this here because it's definitely the reason why this particular anthology published by the UP Press has intrigued me to no end.

Demons of the New Year had a lot of amazing things going for it. Firstly, it's a horror fiction from my country the Philippines which is already a readily commendable trait, seeing as I've always believed that we have some of the most enticing paranormal lore out there as well as perplexing and creepy superstitions deeply rooted in our collective national consciousness. This ant…