Book Review: ‘News Hardcore: Hukbong Sandatahan ng Kahaggardan’ by Manix Abrera

WARNING: This review will get personal. Back in 2013, when I was new-ish at my previous (and first-ever) job at GMA News Online, I once spent an entire day reading Manix Abrera's News Hardcore from the first strip to the latest. Concealing my laughter became a struggle. News Hardcore at first followed the adventures of a newbie journo… Continue reading Book Review: ‘News Hardcore: Hukbong Sandatahan ng Kahaggardan’ by Manix Abrera


Of Sorrow and Such by Angela Slatter

So, I wrote a review for Angela Slatter’s upcoming novella “Of Sorrow and Such” for book review site Those Who Run With Wolves. 😀

Those Who Run With Wolves

(review by Vida Cruz, ARC from the Imprint)

Of Sorrow and SuchMistress Patience Gideon is a harmless middle-aged lady living with her teenaged foundling Gilly and her wolf-dog Fenric in the outskirts of Edda’s Meadow. She heals with herbs the ills of the locals who cannot or will not see Dr. Herbeau, the medicine man who comes around once a month. Unbeknownst to everyone except Gilly, Patience is a witch–a good one, though that doesn’t matter to the religious–and her house is a safe place for all passing witches, such as the talented doll animator Selke, on the run from the archbishop of Lodellan. Otherwise, life is mostly peaceful and quiet for Patience.

But when the spoiled, shapeshifting Flora Brautigan is publicly caught in the middle of shifting and a sinister figure from Patience’s past appears in Edda’s Meadow, Patience and every other witch in their village are in danger of being revealed and summarily executed…

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Analysis/Reviews, Random Epiphanies, Writing

Questions About Heroes

Yesterday (Aug. 31) was National Heroes' Day in the Philippines. Coincidentally, I also finished the novella I've been working on since October 2014 on the same day. Hooray! Being high off the triumph and unable to keep my brain from running on ideas, I've begun to brainstorm what the next work I set in the… Continue reading Questions About Heroes


Book Review: ‘Seraphina’ by Rachel Hartman

If you read only one novel this year, make it Rachel Hartman's debut novel Seraphina. I was first attracted by the gorgeous cover of the 2014 reprint edition, and then by this interesting article on inventing gender systems by Hartman herself. When I finally dove into Seraphina, the first book in the duology, it was thankfully much, much more… Continue reading Book Review: ‘Seraphina’ by Rachel Hartman


Movie Review: ‘Cinderella’

Warning: SPOILERS AHOY. Well, that was adorable. Before I watch any live-action Disney film, especially one that's a retelling of a retelling, I always make sure to lower my expectations first--not because I think the film is going to be bad per se (although Maleficent was pretty...meh), but because there will be inevitable changes to the story… Continue reading Movie Review: ‘Cinderella’


Book Review: ‘Sourdough and Other Stories’ by Angela Slatter

Readers can dive into a short story collection at any point in the book--unlike with novels, which are usually read from cover to cover. Not so with Angela Slatter's Sourdough and Other Stories. You could read the 16 gems in this book in any order, but to get the full effect of her nesting doll-like structure,… Continue reading Book Review: ‘Sourdough and Other Stories’ by Angela Slatter


Book Review: ‘How the World Became Quiet’ by Rachel Swirsky

Doesn't that wonderful title just give you a sense of quiet devastation? But I'll get back to that in a bit. When reading an author's work for the first time, I usually prefer getting my hands on a short story collection of theirs, if they have any. That way, I'll have the option of looking… Continue reading Book Review: ‘How the World Became Quiet’ by Rachel Swirsky


Graphic Novel Review: ‘Beautiful Darkness’ by Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoët

Warning: Spoiler alert. Beautiful Darkness got under my skin whether I wanted it to or not. The physical experience of having the book sort of mimicked my reading experience. To start with, I did not buy this book--it was sent to me by a friend who wished for me to bring it home for her from San… Continue reading Graphic Novel Review: ‘Beautiful Darkness’ by Fabien Vehlmann and Kerascoët