Below the Crying Mountain by Filipino writer Criselda Yabes makes it to Man Asian Literary Prize longlist

Below the Crying Mountain by Criselda Yabes. Photos from the Man Asian Literary Prize website.

The novel Below the Crying Mountain by Filipino writer and journalist Criselda Yabes is in the running for the 2010 Man Asian Literary Prize. Up against nine other books, it is the only Filipino novel included in the recently announced longlist. The shortlist will be announced in February, and the awarding ceremony is on March 17. The winner will receive US $30,000.

According to the Man Asian Literary Prize website, Below the Crying Mountain is about the "Moro rebellion that broke out in Sulu in the 1970s... seen vividly through the lives of the mestiza Rosy Wright, the Tausug girl Nahla, the rebel leader Prof. Hassan, the soldier Capt. Rodolfo, as well as in the quest of the book’s narrator."

The book, published by the University of the Philippines Press, won in the fiction and creative nonfiction categories of the Gawad Likhaan: UP Centennial Literary Awards in 2008, reports ABS-CBNNews.com.

Yabes has published five books, including the nonfiction Sarena’s Story: The Loss of A Kingdom which won in the 2008 Gawad Likhaan: UP Centennial Literary Awards. The journalism graduate worked as a Manila correspondent for international publications such as the Associated Press, Reuters, Newsweek, The Washington Post and The Economist. She is now based in Manila but often travels to Mindanao to do research for a book on the military’s approach to the conflict in the region.

In 2008, Ilustrado by Canada-based Filipino writer Miguel Syjuco won the Man Asian Literary Prize.

For more on this story, log on to the Man Asian Literary Prize website and ABS-CBNNews.com.

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