Written by:

Bernadeth Tabinas


Hello Philippines Newspaper UK

Ang Nababasa ni Pepe:

A Humble Breakthrough

It started with an ambitious dream. A dream that, when he learned to live with and stick at, slowly

turned into a reality right before his eyes.

How it all began


                  Elija’s prime motivation and inspiration was Myla, his sister, who had been battling against lymphoma cancer and now, undergoing some series of tests for full recovery. Very eager to sustain for his sister’s diagnostic exams and positively winning the battle, he planned of directing and making an “Indie film” in collaboration with a Filipino-Spanish director. The supposed film revolved around an inspiring theme, that was, to uplift the spirit of Filipinos, on not to lose hope when big challenges would come along the way. But as soon as scripts and scenes were made and outlined, came his problem with casting. This paved way to creating his first book instead, where he could eventually narrate his experiences about living in a foreign land and at the same time, he could express his own thoughts and views on what was happening around him. 

Behind those sheets


                   As a beginner in the field, it was never easy for him to understand what he really wanted for his readers. He also feared on not meeting what they might expect of him and his output. But ‘giving up’ was never his thing. He made some researches, tapped various friends for suggestions and even reached out to few known writers to whom he gained great insights for his book.


                  To get more focused, he locked himself out from all social networking sites, especially facebook, for a few months. Along with it were some matters about her sister’s situation and his difficulties to survive in London. He felt down and even got sick in the process but support coming from family and friends made him more determined to finish what he had started. He worked his own way out – from finding trusted editors, searching for low-cost publishers, and even to getting sponsors! He learned them all the hard way.


The Reviews



Ang Nababasa ni Pepe is a compilation of stories, teachings and lessons learned by the author from his experiences and exciting adventures overseas – from the moment he first stepped into the foreign land, to meeting friends, making conversations and simple talks and to dealing with varieties of people at work. It is created is such a manner that one can really visualize, feel and easily grasp the message. The book is an integration of happy, dramatic, playful and unique stories intended to complement with and instantly connect to the readers.


Manila Bulletin, J. Fernandez puts it, “Nakakatawa, nakakaaliw, mapupulutan ng maraming aral. Tunay mong mauunawaan ang hirap at ligaya ng pakikipagsapalaran sa mga nababasa ni Pepe. (Funny, entertaining, you will learn many lessons. You will truly understand the hardship and happiness to journeying life in Nababasa ni Pepe.)”


A known writer, psychlogist, educator and therapist, Dr. Margarita Holmes says, “You get to learn a lot from the author’s experiences, all from different views – anthropologically, sociologically/economically and psychologically. Truly funny and heart-warming…certainly very interesting and I love it!”


Phillip Salvador Palmos, writer, singer, advocate, actor/stage manager in Tanghalang Pilipino added, “A story of hope, perseverance, determination and love. A book that celebrates every Pepe in every country and in every side of the world. A book that speaks of our common humanity and proved once again that the youth is the future of our struggling but beautiful country.”


”Creative and curious. It will help even young people to understand and appreciate the adventures of Filipinos overseas,” describes Pebbles Badillo Sanchez, Youth Empowerment Advocate and the Team Leader of Greeneration Philippines, a climate change awareness campaign for the youth of the Office of the President – Philippine Climate Change Commission.

A Valuable Piece


                 Through his book he is able to show that Filipinos, young and old alike, can easily adapt to someone’s culture without sacrificing his own principles and values. We will learn how the author dealt with the difficult times and how he looked for ways beyond the unimaginable; on how he saw every hardship as an opportunity to go further with all positivity and courage.


One important note about the book is that, most of the words used are in Filipino and it is written informally just like a casual conversation between the author and his reader. It is produced for entertainment, like a story teller slowly reading to his listeners. Stories are made light and in the simplest way possible for easy comprehension that even little children can enjoy.


The author primarily created the book, not only to support his sister’s medical needs, but also to share his wonderful experiences and how he, as a youth of the new generation, has struggled abroad like others. His aim is to simply acquaint his fellowmen on the new things, prepare us for greater challenge over the unexpected and test our readiness on living in a different environment. This book simply invites us to walk with the writer in his journey towards discovering life and as we go along, we better understand his every step and turn.


Book launching will simultaneously happen sometime in September this year, in London, United Kingdom and in the Philippines. At the same time, copies will be available worldwide through www.amazon.com. For more information please contact him at: www.elijahpaulvillanueva.com and through his mobile 07414924303.


This is definitely the kind of book everyone must have, a good read and a rare find. It is absolutely a great time to support and celebrate the success of a fellow countryman, adding to thousands of reasons why we must always feel proud to be Filipinos. 

The Author


I have known Elija Paul Villanueva for almost five years, for which I have only personally seen him twice or thrice and talked to him just once. Though we had no formal introduction, we became acquainted through a highly-regarded youth organization in the Philippines, of which both of us were members then. In addition, social networking sites, as facebook and emails, enabled us to continually reach out to each other through which we formed a type of bond and friendship over the years.


He is a great man. He simply dreams big and works hard for them. Few of the things I admire him the most are his overflowing positivity and determination, and his love for his family. And I believe everyone who knows him definitely sees his sacrifices to provide for his family in the Philippines, most especially for her sister, Myla. Not only that, he has been a sponsor to charities and foundations in his homeland, too. He has been a youth advocate since then – a leader to some youth organizations and once a global ambassador towards uplifting the rights of the youth.


He stays humble in spite of his achievements. With the kind of circle he has – local and global movements and groups, he’ll definitely win Mr. Congeniality. Plus the fact that he easily finds friends and truly values them. He has roamed around United Kingdom and you always find him leaving smiles to people’s faces along the way.


He is a professional photographer. It has been his passion and fascination to appreciate beauty even in broken structures and crooked lines. He sees beyond just simple hues and puts colour to dull whites, while calmness to strong shades. He gained excellence in his skill after few years of practicing it over United Kingdoms’ amazing architectures and overwhelming landscapes. He then started to capture portraits of renowned models and prominent people, while also being invited to cover big events and special activities within and outside United Kingdom.






© 2016 Elijahpaulvillanueva All Rights Reserved.