Tuesday, November 16, 2010

VIGAN AND OTHER STORIES by Cecilia Manguerra Brainard Released in the Philippines

WITHOUT any fanfare, my third short story collection will be released on November 17 in the Philippines by Anvil. If you're in the Philippines and find this book in National Bookstore or Powerbooks, do pick up a copy of the orphan. I haven't even seen the actual book! The cover study with the blurbs below is not the final one. I am sure that Philippine Expressions in the U.S. will have copies of this book in a few months time.

I'll be writing more about my three short story collections, what the stories are about, the publishers, and other anecdotes related to the books, so visit my blog again.

“In this, her third collection of short stories, Cecilia Manguerra Brainard shows an uncanny talent for speaking in varied voices that bridge time and place: she is at home in Vigan, the mythical Ubec (Cebu), Sagada, Manila, Cusco, Peru, Calcutta, Chartres, California, bringing each location alive with loving detail. She speaks as a school girl, an older woman, a love-struck boy, a stolen child, an underground revolutionary. She writes of her own family and childhood with love and sadness and a deep sense of humanity. Most charming? “Meeting Che Guevara”, which starts out “I was nineteen when I met Che Guevara.”’ ~ Susan Evangelista, Professor, Palawan State University

“This is a rich and generous collection of stories. They spring from various sources--autobiographical, anecdotal and experimental. It entertains the casual reader, instructs aspiring and practising writers alike, and enriches the country's culture. “ ~ Paulino Lim, Jr., Professor Emeritus, California State University

“Cecilia’s style is even more spare or sparing, letting the words do the barest possible work of depicting action, description, or sequencing the events in the collected narratives…I’d call this style, which seems fairly unique to her (even when compared to that of old masters like Bulosan and Gonzalez), as scenographic, to borrow a term from cinema.” ~ Oscar V. Campomanes, Professor, Ateneo de Manila University

Cecilia's Bio:Cecilia Manguerra Brainard is the award-winning author of eight books, including the internationally-acclaimed novel, When the Rainbow Goddess Wept, Magdalena, Vigan and Other Stories, Acapulco at Sunset and Other Stories, Philippine Woman in America, Woman With Horns and Other Stories, Cecilia's Diary 1962-1968, and Fundamentals of Creative Writing. She edited four books: Growing Up Filipino I and II, Fiction by Filipinos in America, Contemporary Fiction by Filipinos in America. Cecilia co-edited six books, including Journey of 100 Years: Reflections on the Centennial of Philippine Independence; Behind the Walls: Life of Convent GirlsAla Carte: Food and Fiction, and Finding God: True Stories of Spiritual Encounters. She has also written a novel with four other women entitled, Angelica's Daughters, a Dugtungan Novel. Her work has been translated into Finnish and Turkish; and many of her stories and articles have been widely anthologized.

Cecilia has received a California Arts Council Fellowship in Fiction, a Brody Arts Fund Award, a Special Recognition Award for her work dealing with Asian American youths, as well as a Certificate of Recognition from the California State Senate, 21st District. She has also been awarded by the Filipino and Filipino American communities she has served. In 1998, she received the Outstanding Individual Award from her birth city, Cebu, Philippines. She has received several travel grants in the Philippines, from the USIS (United States Information Service). In 2001, she received a Filipinas Magazine Award for Arts.

She has lectured and performed in worldwide literary arts organizations and universities, including UCLA, USC, University of Connecticut, University of the Philippines, PEN, Beyond Baroque, Shakespeare & Company in Paris, and many others. She teaches creative writing at the Writers Program at UCLA-Extension. 

She is married to Lauren R. Brainard, a former Peace Corp Volunteer to Leyte, Philippines; they have three sons.

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