Filipino writer Allan Derain’s folkloric and prophetic novel ANG BANAL NA AKLAT NG MGA KUMAG [The Holy Book of Plebeians] is one of the most brilliant and best novels that appeared in the first years of the 21st century.
The novel is a creative and eclectic retelling of Philippine and Filipinized Western myths to convey rather vague yet rich philosophical and political messages. Derain brings us to a strange yet familiar world of Bakunawas, gods, aswangs, and other creatures of Philippine folklore, creating a pantheon of local mythology. The moving psychological flavor and obscure satire is reminiscent of Ovid’s famous epic THE METAMORPHOSIS. Indeed, Derain is the brown Ovid.
[written by: Jubert Cabrezos]