July 11, 2018

Those were the days.

There was a time, years back, when a lot of us in the book club maintained book blogs. (I qualify that they are “book blogs” to differentiate them from personal ones, which a number of us [including me] also kept.) Some of us have even set up collective blogs, with a number of contributors, to write about a common favorite interest.

It’s been a long, long time since our respective first posts on our blogs, and although some of us have endured through the years, the majority (including me, again) has fallen way behind. What happened? Real life. Always the culprit. Mostly it’s lack of time, for some it’s lack of inspiration. As for me, it’s the former. Hey, having 2 kids (now) and a full-time job and managing an entire household demand time, right?

So anyway, I was tinkering with the blog today when I saw that it’s actually marginalia’s blog anniversary (blogiversary? bloggy birthday?) this month. It must be on its 7th year because I remember setting it up on the July of the year when my daughter was to turn 1, which is 2011. In previous years, I used to hold giveaways to celebrate this milestone, and always, the audience and/or participants would be my fellow bloggers/book club friends. Now, I doubt that anyone would still be around to participate if I were to hold one.

I may no longer hold giveaways or contests here but I will sure try to write about the books I’ve read. Sort of a blog reboot, yes. It’s so easy to just let it go but I don’t have the heart! All those years of write-ups and “reviews,” sayang naman. So I will try to post something at least twice a month to keep the blog running.

Oh look, this is my second post for July. See ya in August? :D

July 5, 2018

Really, I’m still here.

I haven’t been posting here as much as I want to - even though elsewhere in social media I’m pretty much active - and it’s because it isn’t as convenient to write a review as, say, posting a photo of the book I’m currently reading on Instagram or ranting/raving about it on Twitter. Also, I’m preoccupied with family matters - a new addition to the family has ALL of us busy - and I haven’t been reading as much as I’d want to. It’s only for the past couple of months that I’ve managed to pick up my reading pace. And then when I was gearing up for more time to update the blog, wham. My easy access via office desktop has been blocked, so I’m left with (1) blogging on my phone or (2) blogging on my laptop at home, which is a bit tricky considering the fact that whatever little time I have at home is spent with my family.

But enough about that - I’m here now, always have been, so let me regroup and start over. 

I’m currently reading Hanya Yanagihara’s “A Little Life,” and it’s so depressing, I feel like I need to talk to someone about it. But Jude, Willem, Malcolm, and JB are growing on me, and I understand the difficulties that Jude is going through. 

More on the next post. 

September 29, 2017

Hi. I'm still here.

Yep, still around although exhausted all the time. I don't have a lot of time to write about my latest readings, and if I do, I'm just too tired to think; I'd much rather rest or sleep it off, recharge and let the brain cells recover. You know, whatever of them I got left.

Real life has been kicking me in the butt the past months. My family and I are excited with a new development and that's the thing that keeps me going. (I have to, really, but I'm not complaining.) Looking forward to a long-anticipated vacation soon as well. I haven't been reading in the pace that I'm used to, mainly because of time constraints but I still try. I miss it too much.

For sure I'll sit down, open the books I've read these past months, and compose something that's worth publishing. Until I find the time to do that, please hang in there for me? I'm not giving up on this blog so stay with me, please?

June 17, 2017

First pattern

Joined the individual bingo for the book club this year and I finally completed a pattern. Yay for me!

This means I can focus on whatever I want to read for the rest of the year! No plans for a blackout this time, unlike last year. Happy that I finally finished this one pattern. :)

May 3, 2017

Wicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West

by Gregory Maguire

L. Frank Baum's classic children's tale, The Wizard of Oz, is my favorite book of all time. I've read it as a child for practically a thousand times, never getting tired of the adventures of Dorothy and Toto, the Tin Woodman, the Scarecrow, and the Cowardly Lion on their way to the Emerald City. In fact, I credit this novel for starting me on reading. I've kept our family's hardbound copy of the novel for many years now, and it will always be special to me.

So, it is with a mixed amount of excitement and skepticism - actually, it's more of the latter, really - that I picked up this supposed prequel created by Gregory Maguire. It's also the basis for the Tony-award winning musical of the same title, whose worldwide success is indubitable (I have not seen it yet, despite its having been staged here in Manila).

April 14, 2017

The Orphan Master's Son

by Adam Johnson

I met Adam Johnson last year on my first Philippine Readers and Writers Festival, an event I attended with my good friend Benny. Prior to that day, I only knew Adam Johnson as the author of The Orphan Master's Son, a Pulitzer winner, which I haven't read yet (at the time). After meeting him, I discovered that he has a good sense of humor, he is over six feet tall, he actually flew to North Korea for the purpose of gathering material for his Pulitzer-winning novel, and he is a friendly, good-natured guy, you will feel at ease talking to him.

But that isn't why I loved The Orphan Master's Son. Really.

Pak Jun Do's father runs Long Tomorrows, an orphanage outside Pyongyang. Although he is not an orphan, he might as well be, as far as everyone else is concerned. Living among his father's wards and exercising authority over them elevate him from the ranks until he is "recruited" by Pyongyang as a professional kidnapper, abducting Japanese citizens and bringing them back to North Korea for whatever purpose they may serve. Later, Pak Jun Do embarks on other roles until finally, he assumes the personality of Commander Ga, once the most loyal subject of Kim Jong Il and the husband of the actress Sun Moon, the woman he loves.