Review: Ang Bonggang Bonggang Batang Beki

Ang Bonggang Bonggang Batang Beki
Ang Bonggang Bonggang Batang Beki by Rhandee Garlitos
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Bet na bet ni watashi itechiwa! Havey na havey ang kwento, keriboomboom. Wachikelibambam ang mga nyeyters nitey. Opkors purita kalaw, waley datungshi ang mga nyeyters ng mga batang beki.

Some of my friends are from the LGBT community and most of them are those whom I really trust. I did not, however, learn the gay lingo from my friends (they’re not using it). I remembered it from watching few videos of Bern Josep Persia also known as Bekimon. As you can see, I attempted and failed to review in gay lingo (maybe I’ll get there somehow someday haha).

This is the first children’s book in Asia that tackles effiminacy on boys. The story is narrated in the eyes of an innocent child. His younger brother Adel is effeminate and likes the color pink. Their uncle and cousins tease and bully Adel all the time but his family is always defending him. In the end, he shows that he can also defend himself.

This is an eye opener for people like Tito Braulio, those who are close-minded, uptight, and radical conservatives. Parents are very influential to their children. So if Tito Braulio will be sympathetic, he can teach his children what is being kind and what is not. If he, however, can’t distinguish it himself, how can he teach his own children? Those children will be the next generation so it’s better if more people will have an open mind.

I like how Adel’s family is open to his sexuality. They accept him in everything he does and what he likes. His father is understanding; he does not care that Adel will not acquire the traditional qualities that man possess. His older brother and sister are also supportive. They don’t see him as different and with fault.

The story also shows that sexuality does not affect the productivity, the character, and the wholeness of a person.

~~~***~~~***~~~***~~~

I met Rhandee Garlítos in the first all-Filipino book festival Aklatan. He was typing in his laptop when I came over and he stopped what he was doing. He’s very approachable and friendly. I remember reading his past work “Chenelyn! Chenelyn!” when I was young and like it. I still like his works.

I really really admire the illustrations. It really got me the moment I laid my eyes on the book cover. I perceived the cover as a beki in pink iris of the eye or contact lens. When I saw the whole thing, however, I might be wrong. Whatever it is, I would say that Tokwa Peñaflorida did a really great job (I also like his nickname!). I like the hues and blending of watercolors. The emotions and personalities are also visible. He acquired a new fan here.

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