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Across the sea: Philippine speculative fiction reaches Czech Republic

Have the Czechs beaten you to reading the best of Philippine speculative fiction?

"The SEA Is Ours: Tales from Steampunk Southeast Asia" was released in November 2015, receiving favorable reviews from critics and fans of the genre. commended the stories by Marilag Angway (“Chasing Volcanoes”) Kate Osias (“The Unmaking of the Cuadro Amoroso”), Olivia Ho (“Working Woman"), and Robert Liow’s (Spider Here), but noted that "even the slighter stories have the craft, perspective, and components that merit savoring, and the finest would be worth considering for any year’s best anthology."

Half a year later, these works reached a broader audience with a Czech release under the title "Krocení sopek" (Roughly "Taming the Volcano", based on the story by Angway).

"Krocení sopek" was launched by no less than Czech Ambassador to Manila Jaroslav Olša Jr. at Shangri-La Plaza in Mandaluyong.

The translation was done by Jan Krav?ík, who said that while translating the book he "discovered (a) whole new world — (the) fascinating and captivating world of Philippine mythology."

"The SEA is Ours" is another thread that binds the literary worlds of the Czech Republic and the Philippines together. In 2015, Czech literary magazine Plav published two stories by Filipino writers Rochita Loenen-Ruyiz and Crystal Koo. The forthcoming issue will also include stories from the Philippines by Andrew Drillon and Kristine Ong Muslim.

"Krocení sopek", however, is the debut of five Filipino writers in Czech translations, including GMA News' Science and Technology editor Timothy James Dimacali through his story "On the Consequence of Sound."

"The SEA is Ours" is also available in Malaysia, distributed by Gerak Budaya. — APG, GMA News

Tags: books, fiction