Title: Para Kay B
Author: Ricky Lee
In our hearts and minds, we have this idea of what we think love is or how ideally it should be. Love became one of our utmost desires. Until Ricky Lee proposed a theory about love: “May quota ang pag-ibig. Sa bawat limang umiibig ay isa lang ang magiging maligaya.” At some point, we fail to acknowledge in our loved-up thoughts, being blinded by the happy feeling, is the raw and the real side of love. And that is what this book is trying to grasp.
Ricky Lee was able to describe love in different aspects.
It was written in a bold, straight forward, brave, and entertaining way. He was able to go beyond the norms, or what other writers are afraid to do.
The book promotes a theory that love has a quota; that for every five person who’s in love, only one will have a happy ending.
Such question arises, “Does this mean na isa lang ang may happy ending?”, “Ano ang ibig sabihin ng Conjure?”, “Isa ka bang kapital S?”, and the much more intriguing question is, “Sino nga ba si B?”
5 stories. 5 different characters. 5 faces of love.
This book was created to open the minds of the readers into the different faces, mystery, stupidity, and magic of love. Love was given a different meaning in each chapter. Even though, it was different from the love that we usually see on movies and novels, we could feel this certain force attracting us to continually read and love the characters in the story.
Let your own imagination run wild while reading it and figure out which character you can relate to.
The first story is about a love that is long forgotten. Irene is a woman who’s still clinging to the promise of marriage from someone in the past. They felt a strong bond that eventually got disrupted by a series of unfortunate events. Years later, they meet again, but the question is, did she really fell in love or was she just in love with the long forgotten memory?
The second story is about falling in a romantic love with a sibling. Sandra’s situation is unusual in terms of Filipino norms but could be happening in our present time.
People are afraid to tell the story of this forbidden love because it is unacceptable in the society.
The third story introduces a girl from an alternative universe called Maldiaga where “love is non-existent.” Erica is in a fictional world that refuses to fall in love. She finds herself breaking the rules and leaving the place to find love.
It describes a feeling of people falling in love for the first time. The question is, will she be able to find real love?
The fourth story deals with same-sex relationship. Ester grew up not entertaining the truth about her sexuality. It shows how in love, even if you think that you’re destined to be with that person, the situation may not allow you because of certain standards in the society.
Will Ester realize the importance of facing the truth?
The last story revolves around Bessie. If one word could describe her character, it would be, “Paasa.” Will her promiscuity hinder her chances of falling in love? Or will she be associated with a love that has not been admitted?
We can see how spectacular Ricky Lee is. He was able to bring the characters to life even if the setting and the circumstance is less likely to happen (for example is Erica’s story in Maldiaga).
It was mind-boggling in a way that it leaves the readers a decision whether to believe the writers theory about love. The connection between each chapter makes the readers pay attention to what’s going to happen next. After realizing and reflecting, all the ideas, emotions, feelings would be felt and the missing puzzle piece would be complete.
The novel didn’t revolve solely on love but it was also able to touch the concepts of different social realities.
It served as a reflection of our culture, societal views, politics, and country. The writer was also able to use taglish language which depicts a more colloquial, Pinoy feel in the story. We also loved how Lee brilliantly inserted the ideology of nationalism, corruption, and poverty even if it wasn’t the main focus of the novel. Here in the Philippines, our government and church, and the society in general doesn’t allow same sex marriage in which this book was able to touch.
It was also able to highlight the issues regarding the gender roles, gender inequality, and women’s role in the society.
Through this book, we were able to capture and see the state and condition of the Filipinos in the Philippines that most people have noticed but didn’t take action, those Filipinos whom the government didn’t pay attention and some societal issues that is continually spreading.
The novel was intricately written and remarkable. It is classical in its emotional texture and unmistakably modern in various aspects.
It is satirical, painful, weird, and a mixture of emotions. It was written with modern and realistic tones. Apart from this, it also speaks of the writer’s point on view, his insecurities and frustrations on creating the novel. It diverges more into the musings of being a writer and how powerful they are. But then again:
“Sa tunay na buhay, pag nangyari na, iyon na. Walang revision.”
Why do people choose to love truthfully, even if they know that there are risks associated with it? Para Kay B shows the real idea of love. Even if it’s painful, we still continue to go live with it because that’s real life. All in all, the plot, characters, up to how things really ended, gave us a different view, a different feeling. It was much more than a love story. It was devastating, somehow. But it’s real. Overall, we would give this book 4.5/5 . Para Kay B proved that love stories do not have to end in a happily ever after.
Sometimes, it just needs to end the way that it must end.
Quote from the Book:
“Hindi mo pwedeng mahalin ang isang tao nang hindi mo minamahal ang hilaga, silangan, timog, at kanluran ng kanyang paniniwala. Kapag nagmahal ka’y dapat mong tanggapin bawat letra ng kanyang birth certificate. Kasama na doon ang kanyang libag, utot at bad breath. Pero me limit. Pantay-pantay ang ibinibigay na karapatan sa lahat ng tao upang lumigaya, o masaktan, o magpakagago, pero kapag sumara na ang mga pinto, nawasak na ang mga puso, nawala na ang mga kaluluwa at ang bilang ay umabot na sa zero, goodbye na.”
About the Writers and How Do they See Themselves 10 years from Now
Clara Marie Andreene G. Cator Student – Pasig City Science Highschool
Many things can happen in 10 years. Honestly, I could visualize so many things right now. They say, that when you dream, DREAM BIG. I’ve always wanted to build and design houses, buildings, and bridges. I’ve always wanted to build my own company. I’ve always wanted to create my own business and be a young entrepreneur. I’ve always wanted to change the world in my own little ways.
I’ve always wanted to see my parents very proud of what I’ve achieved.
I’ve always wanted to create and write my own book. I’ve always wanted to inspire young people with my fashion and style. I’ve always wanted to have many cars. I’ve always wanted to live a life without setbacks. And right now, I am a work in progress.
Jacqueline P. Saludo, Student – Pasig City Science Highschool
I see myself as an Electronics Engineer and at the same time a professional musician. I am also a mother butler in a church who is willing to serve him for the rest of my life.
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