Jun 23, 2013

FREE Downloadable Classic Filipino Ebooks from Vibe Bookstore

"Ang Mga Anak Dalita,"
one of the titles available
at Vibe Bookstore
Bernardo Carpio. Urbana at Feliza. Tandang Bacio Macunat. I remember hearing these classic Filipino titles mentioned by my Filipino teachers in high school. I had been slightly curious as to what the books contained, but I never had the chance to actually read them.

It's such a shame. Here I am, a proud Filipino reader, familiar with the works of many foreign writers but completely ignorant of my own country's classic literary heritage.

And then, last night, I chanced upon this: the Vibe Bookstore. It's an ebook store, similar to Amazon.com's Kindle bookstore, but it targets primarily the Filipino market.

There are Filipino classics, world classics, children's books in Filipino and English, non-fiction...

Actual titles you will find: 
  • Bullfinch's Mythology 
  • The Jungle Book 
  • Mabel Cook's Philippine Folk Tales 
  • Anne of Green Gables 
  • Si Nanay Mining at ang Tatlong Kuting 
  • Ugnayan: Wika at Pagbasa 
  • The Happy Prince and Other Stories
  • Ibong Adarna
...and much more! 

Now, mind you, not all of these books are free. If you choose a non-free ebook, you can pay using your credit card or Paypal account. According to the site, they will also be accepting Gcash, SmartMoney, and other locally accessible methods of payment soon.

Of course, nothing in life is perfect, and there is one important caveat to getting books from the Vibe Bookstore: to be able to download the books, you also need to download and install the free Vibe ebook reader app. 

Now that shouldn't be a problem if you have
  • an iPad,;
  • a powerful Android tablet (otherwise, the app will probably make your tablet freeze); or
  • a Windows 8 computer.
But if you're just using a 4-inch-screen smartphone, or an entry-level Android tablet, or a non-Windows 8 computer (I mean, really, how many of us are on Windows 8?), then you may have difficulty reading the books or downloading them in the first place. 

Me? I've got an Android phone and a Windows 7 computer. Last night, I tried to read Bernardo Carpio on a 5-inch screen and got a headache for my efforts. (The old Tagalog spellings, like "cuento" instead of "kuwento" did not help, but I love them!) 

So, yeah, I'm saving up for a decent Android tablet now.

UPDATE (July 29, 2013): Vibe Bookstore has released the latest version of the Vibe e-book reader app, version 2.3.5, which lets iPad users access children's picture books without the previous issue of the program hanging. The issue did not exist for non-picture books and Android users. 

DISCLOSURE: This is a non-sponsored post. The Nanay Notebook and its author received absolutely nothing from anybody in return for this article.

The Nanay Notebook is written by Blessie Adlaon, a work-at-home and homeschooling mom of four. Check out our About page to know more about this blog's author and our policies on advertising, press releases, and reposting.

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