The Lost Journal of Alejandro Pardo: Creatures and Beasts of Philippine Folklore

Budjette Tan

Book cover

This is a fun book that unfortunately is not generally available in the US (I had to get my mother-in-law get it for me in Manila). It’s more or less a “bestiary” with entries for different monsters and creatures from Filipino folk traditions, including really nice (and sometimes freaky!) sketch-style illustrations. Each one includes a brief “blurb” from Pardo, the fictional monster-hunter.

Having read Tan & Baldisimo’s “Trese” series, I was hoping for something a little more narrative. In fact, my favorite part of the book was the afterword, which creates a creepy frame story around the whole thing–I wish this had been a foreword, and would recommend reading it first if you pick up the book!

I’d also like to know more about which regions and cultures of the Philippines the different legends come from, but I guess that will have to wait for the Maximo Ramos books that this draws on.

My Goodreads rating: 3 stars