Hey there! Last September 14, my friends and I went to Manila for the weekend to have some fun but the main agenda why we decided to be like the brats that we are is the #MIBF2017. Since early July this year, we kept on reading promotions about the event and we were so excited because this is the first time we’re travelling with friends alone (no parents!).
We stayed in MNL for three days and two nights, the book fair is our first agenda for our first day there. For the following days, I’ll be blogging about it and our touristy weekend activities soon on a separate post. 🙂
Before we went to the SMX Convention Center at MOA, we still have to find the original Fullybooked branch within MOA because they generously reserved tickets for us! Before I forget, I love to extend my thanks to Fullybooked for being so accommodating to us, we approached their Ayala Cebu branch to ask for tickets and they contacted the MNL branch for us. *so much love for you guys! thank you!!!!*
Aren’t these tickets pretty enough? I actually kept them and will use them as bookmarks in the future.
When we got there, there aren’t really that many people compared to the posts that I’ve seen from the previous years and I was so thankful for that because who likes to shop when you can barely breathe? We didn’t pay any monetary fees there, we just presented the tickets. We first explored the first floor, we read from MIBF’s facebook that the whole second floor would be dedicated for Children’s and YA books.
The very first booth that greeted us was NBS (duh). They have soooooo many shelves and everything was crazy. I didn’t know where to look first, BUT (yes the big bold but) despite every single book that made me salivate, I couldn’t bring myself to buy any because they’re only like 20% OFF, and personally I’ve experienced a National Book Store sale with a price range of Php 30.00-300.00 I wasn’t that happy with their MIBF price. So we moved on to Fullybooked!
I have to admit, Fullybooked offered the same sale with NBS, still 20% off. Just 20%. But the books at Fullybooked were everything I’ve dreamed of. So I lost my self control and I gave in. The staff at Fullybooked were announcing that there were only last two copies for the Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas, so I rushed to the nearest staff and asked him for the last two copies of the book, and when they announced that the Tower of Dawn was sold out, I heard the angels sing. HAHAHA kidding! but seriously, I felt so happy, I don’t know why.
After spending enough time in the first floor, we went to the 2nd floor because my friends said that there might be more YA and Fantasy books upstairs since that’s what they’ve been promoting and boasting about, but when we got there, I was so disappointed I wanted to cry. There was not even a Fullybooked booth!!!! Only NBS and it contained so few books, there was only a puppet show going on for the children and mostly books for children.
The only thing that made me smile that time was when I noticed the staffs’ shirts, they’re all book covers for most awaited books for 2017.
So, here’s the thing, we only spent half a day at the book fair. We didn’t receive any freebies that they promised, there weren’t even eco-bags from Fullybooked (and I don’t mind if I have to pay for it, but there was nothing!) They only used plastic bags, and it hurt my hands so much, by the time we finished our nonsense walk at the second floor, my hands were red because the books were so heavy. Another thing, the sale at the book fair was not enough. We flew to MNL to see what we’re missing in CEB but then it turned out we weren’t missing anything special at all. We learned that the book store branches in CEB also threw out a sale so as not to be unfair for the people there, and that’s okay – actually, that’s very considerate of them – but we’ve witnessed REAL and EXTREME sale from these book stores and it’s nothing (way better) than what we saw at the book fair. Lastly, there was that book signing event of Jenny Han, (this is not part of my rant how disappointing MIBF is, just my own stupid decision) it’s not really a problem if we miss it because we’ve already attended her book signing event a few years back, but we wanted our AFLJ to be signed, it turned out that the schedule of Jenny Han’s book signing event in CEB is the day that we’ll be in MNL. Imagine our regret.
So, maybe that’s why there aren’t much people at the book fair anymore compared to the previous years. Maybe people realized how disappointing and unspecial the event is. If you’re not from MNL and you wanted to attend the book fair, I’m telling you, don’t. Just don’t. Don’t waste your plane tix for it. It’s not worth it. It is soooo different from BEA (Book Expo America) or Bookcon. Yes, obviously I am not going back.
But in our case, we didn’t waste our time there, we did some touristy activities to compensate what we left in CEB. HAHA Anyway, to make things better here are the books my friends and I bought:
My best friend and I have each copy of Tower of Dawn, Between Shades of Gray, The Kiss of Deception and The Heart of Betrayal. I only bought four books, so the others were my friends’.
That’s everything that I’ve experienced and my thoughts regarding the book fair. Hopefully you learned something. Watch out for my future posts for my Weekendventures with my friends 🙂