Finally, before I take a break..

Its tough enough sensitizing a woman. Every day I discover some new contradiction in me that has to be worked out

– mens rea and other stories, Lakambini A. Sitoy

It is not easy to read the stories of Lakambini Sitoy-particularly, I suppose, for fortyish and older male readers such as myself, schooled in the gracefully inflected ironies of Somerset Maugham and Updike, of Arcellana and Brillantes. The unease she produces has nothing to do with the quality of her prose-which is exemplary precise, powerful, and often luminous-but with the unyielding resolve with which she drags you to the trenches of the class and gender wars.

It is an unease entirely deliberate, and from which these stories offer scant relief, if any… Sitoy’s fiction hardly ever smiled, nor settled into restful lulls; the operative word here is clearly “combat

         – from the Foreword by Jose Y. Dalisay, Jr.

I’ve been looking for this book and when I went to the 29th Manila International Book Fair last week, I finally found a copy. Two days later I sent it to a friend reading only the foreword.   

Last night, at NBS-Mall of Asia I found one after several minutes of rummaging through some Mills and Boon-like local paperbacks. Parang sadyang nagtatago at kelangan pa talagang halungkatin.  🙂 

Related Post: A classic a day  



  1. the title my dear em is just my way of saying that i found the book i’ve been looking for.

    “take a break from what?” sa blogging lang naman hehe pero hindi sa commenting

    you’ll see the perplexity of the quoted paragraph soon.. very soon 🙂

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