In the Country

Mia Alvar

Book cover

Like many other reviewers (including my wife), I thought the final and eponymous story was by far the best. But there were other really good ones too! “In the Country” was just especially good. I could easily imagine it being turned into a stand-alone novel. “The Old Girl” and “A Contract Abroad” were also great. (The book is really back-loaded.)

I am just connected enough to the Philippines to appreciate a lot of the Filipino quirks that arise in various stories, but also to be surprised and amused at other ones. Alvar usually only provides pretty minimal glosses on the Pinoy terms or cultural phenomena that come up in the stories. I’m curious how this book would read to someone not at all exposed to Filipino culture.

My Goodreads rating: 4 stars