First a love story. When Erwin Tiongson and Titchie Carandang-Tiongson, history sleuths by avocation, chanced upon an old but well-preserved book on the Philippines, it inadvertently opened up an entire pandora's box of information on a lady lawyer named Nina Irene Thomas of Washington DC. Her connection to Philippine history? She was engaged to Manuel Luis Quezon, president of the Philippine Commonwealth, and would have married him before the politics of (Philippine) independence got in the way. "The Untold Story of Nina Thomas: The American Woman Who Could Have Been First Lady of the Philippines” is not just a profile of an accomplished woman; it's also a look into the thrill of finding history in unexpected places.
Considered one of the wisest and most beloved sages in the Philippines, Washington SyCip passed away a few days ago at the ripe age of 96. PF Correspondent John L. Silva remembers his time with the businessman philanthropist.
An outstanding example of creative nonfiction book that was recently published in Manila is FilAm Laurel Fantauzzo's The First Impulse, a superbly written account of the treacherous murder of two young people in Quezon City. New York-based Marie La Viña writes a review.
The tricky issue of assimilation assumes a timely import in this time of overt racism in the Trump era. History professor James Zarsadiaz gives context and his take on the issue in "Playing the Assimilation Game."
Our In The Know links this week:
Stockton’s Little Manila Center Vandalized in Possible Hate Crime
Josie Natori: Thriving: Fearlessly Growing a Fashion Empire
Exploring an Abandoned Theme Park
How a world concert pianist, with a master’s degree in statistics, helped move CCP forward
And for our Happy Home Cook recipe: Calamares a la Trillanes, the recipe of the controversial senator of this bar favorite when he was in prison (along with many others) for mutiny. This is among the many compiled in a book called Pulutan: From the Soldiers' Kitchen,recipes concocted by the detained mutineers who had too much time on their hands and an unhampered appetite for food and drink.
For our Video of the Week: Asian American Life's Ernabel Demillo explores the lives of Filipinos who made their way to Ellis Island in New York.