February 24, 2019

The World’s Biggest Book Sale: Big Bad Wolf Now On Its Second Year in Manila

There are so many reasons behind why people are drawn to reading books. As for myself I've got a few things in mind and will recon it is I go along this post. While growing up I have already developed a love for reading. I have heard numerous times, that story, my mumma, my grandma and my aunts recall how when I was around 3 years old, they would find me in our library slumped on the floor, reading those Bible picture books. Saying slightly incomprehensible words based on what I’m seeing on those picture books. 

And yes, we have a small library at our ancestral house. That is probably one of the reasons why I got into reading. I don’t know if it was my grandpa or my great grandpa who reads or collects those books that we have in that library but I am thankful they built that. It is where I saw this huge, heavy photo book depicting World War II events that stirred my interest for that said topic. 
I grew up reading some of those books from our library, then moved on to different genres as I grew up. There was a stage for SVH, Archie Comics etc. Then when I was in college, I got introduced to Mitch Albom, Nicholas Sparks and Paolo Coelho etc. I love my literature and history classes because I get to read interesting stuff, both fiction and non-fiction. I pick any book that fancies my interest or someone suggested it is good, and then sometimes I focus on a specific genre. 

But when adulting and social media happened, my passion for reading slowly took a turn. I read less than usual. I get my reading fix on social media, preferred watching the movie adaptation rather than the more detailed and makes me imagine how things transpired in my head. It is what it is and I’m kinda sad about that. The last time I read one full book was back in 2017. I still have 3 unread books that I had a friend buy from the US because they were quite rare. But unfortunately, I still haven’t read them. 

Last Saturday, I got whisked by two friends to visit Big Bad Wolf Book Sale (BBW Books) at World Trade Center. I’ve heard about BBW Books from last year, but never had that desire to really go. I wasn’t even planning to go last weekend because I didn’t want to buy more books that will just be part of my tsundoku and I will just take a look. Btw, Tsundoku is a Japanese word meaning "reading pile" or the desire to buy more books than you can ever read.

Big Bad Wolf Books (The Big Bad Wolf Book Sale or BBW Books) is a Malaysian book fair frequently held in Malaysia, Thailand Indonesia and Sri Lanka. It all began with their first sale in 2009 at Dataran Hamodal, Selangor, Malaysia. Since then, it has grown by leaps and bounds, with howling successes at Surabaya and Jakarta in Indonesia and Bangkok in Thailand. The books were majorly taken from the stocks of BookXcess, a book store dealing in excess or remaindered books from international distributors. The Sale was the brainchild of BookXcess founders Andrew Yap and Jacqueline Ng. It was first held on 13–18 May 2009 for 5 days at Dataran Hamodal, Petaling Jaya.

The Wolf isn’t a bad guy. In fact, he’s every reader's best friend! His mission in life is to bring you the very best books at the lowest prices. The book fair sells all kind of books genres, for example fiction, non-fiction, novels, literature, children's literature and young adult fiction. It also sells merchandise including collectible books and posters, wallpaper, movie posters, tin-plated signs and their own merchandise. This year’s book sale is going to be bigger. The Wolf is bringing 2 million new books at 50% – 90 % off! And it will happen from February 22-March 4 2019. Their doors will be open 24 hours a day at the World Trade Center, Metro Manila, Pasay City and you don’t have to pay to get in.

We went there around 11:00pm and since it was a long weekend there so many people and the queue top the cashier went around like snake across the entire World Trade Center and lasted for hours. There were so many types of books that you can find there that it might overwhelm you. They are stacked based on genre but I’m telling you, it isn’t that organize at that time. I don’t if it was just that particular time or what because I went to straight to non-fiction hoping I could find some titles that I’ve been searching for, for years. But some of the books that I liked under non-fiction/autobiographies I surprising found under the business section. So, you really have to look around in every stack, and I mean every stack.

The strategy is that if you’re going with friends, line up for the cashier once you get there and schedule the time others will look around. Say, for an hour have your friends look around then have them go back to the queue and swap with them. Then repeat, until you guys finally have all the books that you want to buy. I wish we thought of that when we visited so that we didn’t have to line for 2 hours. I felt like I hiked a mountain after leaving the place at 3:00am. It was that tiring.

I particularly enjoyed the activity books and the Children’s books, but I have no use for them at the moment so I just settled with just browsing them for a couple of minutes and put them back again. I found a couple of books that captured my interest, especially those about World War II and autobiographies by war veterans, like Jarhead by Anthony Swofford and Dunkirk by Joshua Levine. But since I have already watched the movie versions, I decided not to get them this time. 

So here are the books that I finally decided to get, these four books truly, madly, deeply, made my heart skipped a beat: American Sniper by the late Chris Kyle, The Operator by ex-Navy SEAL Robert O'Neill, The Long Walk by Iraq War veteran Brian Castner and Sons and Soldiers by Bruce Henderson.

I love reading books. They take me to places and events I’ve never been to and makes my imagination run wild. Reading books also helped me open my mind about a lot of things and ideas about the world we live in. It made me more empathetic as well. Books also helped me a lot with my vocabulary and with speaking/writing in English. Most of all, books give me a chance to use my spare time in a very productive way and provide me with a lot of learning that I can use in every day life.

Visiting Big Bad Wolf Book Sale ignited my long-lost love and passion for reading books. Thus, I vouch to finish these 7 books before this year ends, well hopefully, crossing my fingers.

Website: bigbadwolfbooks.com/ph
Facebook: facebook.com/bbwbooksphilippines
Instagram: instagram.com/bbwbooksph

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