Recommended Books

IJsselstein, Monday, 28 May 2007 18:43:12

We've selected a small number of books for you, which we recommend as valuable reading materials before and during your stay in the Philippines, and have entered the Associates Program, so that you can directly order them on-line. If you order these books via these links, we will earn a small referral fee, which we will use to cover the costs of running this website.

If you have more books or other items to recommend to our visitors, please tell us about it, and we will add it here, and, if possible under the 'further reading' sections of the relevant articles.

The Lonely Planet guide to the Philippines, already in its seventh edition, now by a new team of writers. This books contains loads of practical information on places to stay and to visit. However, I think the sixth edition, by Jens Peters, was better in a number of respects, so if you can get it somewhere second-hand, don't hesitate to buy it. In the chapter on Bohol, quite a lot of information present in the that edition went missing in the current version.
Culture Shock! The Philippines by Alfredo Roces and Grace Roces and illustrations by Shirley Eu, gives a deeper insight into the Filipino psyche, and touches many aspects of the surprisingly rich and complex Filipino culture. Although, especially in highly westernized urban areas, this book may seem somewhat outdated much of still holds true. The accompanying photos that date back to the late sixties certainly are outdated, but since they are just illustrations, that really isn't a problem.

A must-have for everybody who is going to stay in the Philippines for some considerably time, and recommended to all.

The Insight Guide to the Philippines, like most Insight Guides provides somewhat less practical information, but somewhat more background information on the places it describes, and contains numerous world-class photographs. This makes the guide a good guide for those who travel with an organized tour or just prefer to stay at home, and a good companion next to the Lonely Planet for the do-it-yourself traveler.
A field guide to whales and dolphins in the Philippines, by Jose Ma. Lorenzo Tan is a nice little guide on the whales and dolphins that frequent the seas surrounding the islands. On of the few of its kind published in the Philippines. Although now protected, these gentle giants of the seas have long been hunted by the Filipinos, but today, some of the former whalers have found a new job in guiding interested tourist to the places dolphins and whales still gather.
Tropical Fruits of Asia, by Wendy Hutton. When you buy this book in the Philippines, it will be called 'Tropical Fruits of the Philippines,' but it is still the same book, with a far from exhaustive introduction to a number of fruits you might encounter during your trip -- or not, as not all fruits will be in season during a short stay -- some of which you'll never see in your local supermarket. Nice to have!

Jeroen Hellingman