With (L) Charisse Aquino-Tugade, director of the National Book Development Board and (R) Sam Oh, who hosted the media launch of the Philippine Book Festival 2024

The Philippine Book Festival 2024: Things To Do

I’m ready to add another mountain of “Books To Read” to my already overflowing piles of books at home. The Philippine Book Festival 2024 will be held from April 25 to 28, 2024 at the World Trade Center in Pasay, Manila.



Not to be confused with the Manila International Book Fair (MIBF) that’s slated every September—though I, too, thought the same—the Philippine Book Festival is a new bookworm event that’s just on its second year, as compared to the MIBF that’s been running for decades.




 

So what’s the difference? The Philippine Book Festival centers on Filipino authors, illustrators, and educators. This bookworm thinks that’s a great idea! Every time I attend the MIBF, I get so distracted by the foreign titles on sale in the huge Fully Booked exhibit that by the time I end up in local publishing booths such as Tahanan Books, Anvil Publishing, and my alma mater, Ateneo de Manila University Press, I’ve already spent a big chunk of my book budget on foreign novels.

It’s high time we got a book festival that focuses on Philippine literature, culture, and arts.



I was invited to the media launch of the Philippine Book Festival 2024 last week, where I met the brains behind this endeavor, including Charisse Aquino-Tugade, director of the National Book Development Board (NBDB). “This year, we have more authors and we bring together the best of Philippine content for the entire family,” she said. “The country needs more reading spaces that encourage conversation, creation, and collaboration.”

The NBDB has teamed up with several organizations, including Komiket, the Philippine Board on Books for Young People (PBBY), the Book Development Association of the Philippines (BDAP), and the Department of Education (DepEd).

With (L) Charisse Aquino-Tugade, director of the National Book Development Board and (R) Sam Oh, who hosted the media launch of the Philippine Book Festival 2024

If you’re looking to attend this four-day book event, here are the top highlights to look forward to:

1. Book signing with Filipino authors, such as Ambeth Ocampo, historian (He was my professor back in Ateneo) and author of Ambeth Without the Overcoat; Gwy Saludes, the writer behind the hit University Series; and National Artist for Film and Broadcast Arts, Ricky Lee, who will present Trip to Quiapo. Visit NBDB for a full list of guest authors.

2. Rare Book Collection. The National Library of the Philippines will feature a new selection of rare manuscripts and facsimiles.

3. The Book Bar, where you can shop for award-winning Filipino books

4. Cosplay Filipiniana, a cosplay competition where fans can portray their favorite Philippine literary characters

5. Guhit Pambata, an exhibit highlighting the creations of some of our best children’s book illustrators

6. The festival’s four realms of books: a.) Kid Lit, the children’s section, b.) Komiks, which puts the spotlight on Pinoy komiks, c.) Booktopia, where you can browse through fiction and non-fiction titles, and d.) Aral Aklat, for textbooks and educational materials.

7. Creators Lab, where you can attend workshops and talks with your favorite Filpino authors and creators

Kate was here with Komiket founder and president, Paolo Herras. Fun fact: We went to the same grade school and high school (it was a big school with 500+ people per batch), but connected for the first time during this event.

8. Kids-at-Play, which features kid-friendly activities, such as puppet shows and arts and crafts workshops

9. Main Stage, where the featured events will be held, including surprise guest artists and authors

10. Tabuan Food Hall for your food and drink breaks

Which activities are you bookmarking?

The Philippine Book Festival 2024 will run from April 25 to 28, 2024, 8am-8pm at the World Trade Center in Pasay, Manila. Entrance is FREE.