Unboxing of Talon and Cover Reveal of Rogue [Talon #2] by Julie Kagawa + Customs Experience

Hey guys! So last Wednesday, I received two claiming cards from the local post office. I’ve been expecting a very important book that I ordered on The Book Depository last October, so I got really excited and I immediately went on the local post office the day after to claim my package. I went there with my friend, because I also ordered a book for her under my name, that’s why there are two claiming cards. And yeah!!! I almost screamed on the local post office when they gave us the packages. They’re the book we’ve been waiting for 3 weeks already!
Side story (Customs Experience): But to make it harder for us, we almost weren’t able to claim the books. Damn all these corrupt customs employees!
Before someone can claim a package from the post office, the package has to be inspected, so that means they’ll open and check it. So this man, while he’s opening our packages, he said that we will be charged an additional 5% for VAT and 12% tax for BIR (?). He computed the amount and he said it will be around PHP900+.  I was taken aback! What an asshole! The amount is even higher on the price of the book I paid.
Not to brag, but since my friend and I are accounting students (well, thankfully, I am now very proud), we’ve already studied taxes. So that includes exemptions from taxes and whatnot. Of course, I argued with him. I’m not just going to accept that and pay him the amount, you know. I said that for all I know, books are exempted from any taxes or custom fees. But he’s so persistent and he kept insisting the tax. He said that only “education” books are exempted and fiction books are not included on that exemption. But well, I’m not really the person to easily back off too. So I said that if he’ll charge us the PHP900+ tax, we’d rather not get the books and have them delivered back to UK. That was my option to shut him out because I don’t have any supporting document about the exemptions of books including fictions. But maybe, when I said that with full confidence, he sensed that we know something about taxes and he’ll be damned if we go tell the higher ups. When he handed us the resealed packages, I asked what about the tax he’s asking for. He said that it’s okay, we don’t need to pay anymore since we are students and there are only two books blah blah blah. I almost laughed out loud on that.  

Until I got home from school, I was still thinking about our experience on the local post office. So I searched for the law enforcing the exemption of books on taxes. According to the Department of Finance (DOF) “ALL IMPORTED BOOKS ARE TAX-FREE”. This is under the Agreement on the Importation of Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Materials also known as the Florence Agreement. (Please click the link to see the agreement). You’ll see there what are exempted and not.
Why did I included this experience anyway? It’s to let the readers – especially readers in the Philippines who often buy online – be aware of this agreement and not become a victim of our corrupt and opportunist government employees. Please bear this in mind.
This is actually the first time I’ve ever claimed a book I bought from TBD. Before, the books were being delivered directly on our house. So the next time I’ll claim a book on the local post office and have the same experience, I’ll plaster a printed Florence Agreement on the face of that custom person. Damn him and all the corrupt people in the world!
Okay. I’m good now. Anyway, let’s go back to my happiness. lol. So here’s the book I’ve been waiting for!

The package from The Book Depository. Neatly and properly boxed.
The dragon scales are embossed.
And when you remove the dust jacket….


When you open the book.

I can’t wait to read this book! Will make a review when I’m done. 🙂
I just got my copy of the first book of the saga and then Harlequin TEEN revealed the cover of the 2nd book last night. And I am more than excited for this!!!
Isn’t it gorgeous?

By: Julie Kagawa
Published by: Harlequin Teen
To Be Released on: April 28, 2015
Series: Talon #2
Ember Hill left the dragon organization Talon to take her chances with rebel dragon Cobalt and his crew of rogues. But Ember can’t forget the sacrifice made for her by the human boy who could have killed her—Garret Xavier Sebastian, a soldier of the dragonslaying Order of St. George, the boy who saved her from a Talon assassin, knowing that by doing so, he’d signed his own death warrant. 
Determined to save Garret from execution, Ember must convince Cobalt to help her break into the Order’s headquarters. With assassins after them and Ember’s own brother helping Talon with the hunt, the rogues find an unexpected ally in Garret and a new perspective on the underground battle between Talon and St. George. 
A reckoning is brewing and the secrets hidden by both sides are shocking and deadly. Soon Ember must decide: Should she retreat to fight another day…or start an all-out war?
Can’t wait to read both books!
Julie Kagawa Forever!!!

18 thoughts on “Unboxing of Talon and Cover Reveal of Rogue [Talon #2] by Julie Kagawa + Customs Experience”

  1. very informative lalo na ung sa local customs side story.. papaprint din ako nung Florence Agreement pag nag claim ng books. 🙂 thanks for this post <3

    1. Hi! I’ve recently bought some books from TBD and they haven’t arrived yet. I’m planning to go to the local post office but it’d also be my first time doing it.

      My question is, were you referring to PhilPost in Manila?

      1. I’m referring to my local PhlPost in Caloocan. Each city has one (or more) of their own branch (according to the zip code). You can locate your local branch on their website via your zip code.

        But honestly, I don’t suggest going there without a claim notice because they do things manually. And since BD has no tracking number, they’ll rely only to your name. I’ve done this before, I only wasted my time.

        1. Okay. Thank you for the informative reply! I was already planning on visiting the local post office until I’ve read your reply.

          I really like the books that I’ve ordered from them so my experience is a huge letdown so far. 🙁

          1. When did you order? 80% chances the problem is with our local PO to br honest. You can always contact BD and ask for replacement copy or refund if your order already exceeds at least 5-6 weeks time (this is usually how long I wait until I contact them).

  2. Hi, where is your post office located? Charging your book for additional VAT and taxes is ilegal. Either fiction or non-fiction books are exempted to additional taxex. Even Fifty Shades of Grey is exempted ha ha

    Your book is beautiful. I like the engravings (without dusk jacket). Reminds me of Eragon.

  3. It's in Caloocan. And yeah, I'm aware about the exemption of books from taxes. That's why I fought for my right. lol

    Thanks! I'm totally in love with the book. I hope the story won't disappoint me tho. 🙂

  4. Woah thanks for the heads up about the customs I am planning to order from bookdepository and was skeptical if there will be a post charge. Thanks 🙂

  5. So i ordered 5 manga volumes from BD, dispatched Sept. 5 and only one arrive so far (Sept.29). Its already a month now and haven’t received the other 4 manga volumes, im a little worried now lol Already contacted them but so far they just told me to visit the nearest post office in my area. Any help or suggestions in what should i do? Thanks!

    1. Hi there! I think it’s okay to ask them for replacement copies. But, maybe because there are 4 books missing that’s why they suggested to go to the PO first. My friend also bought a one set of books (3 books in total), but they never arrived. I think it’s been more than 2 months already (even though he already asked for replacement copies). Though I have a case where a book came to me very late (around 6-8 weeks after if I’m not mistaken). I suggest that you wait for another 2 to 3 weeks at most – well at least if you still have the patience – then, if the books still didn’t arrive after that period, ask for replacement copies. 🙂

  6. Hello, I just wanted to ask: what do you need to tell the guy who works there in order to get your package?

    Also, thank you so much for this post! Now I’m aware of this law and my right. I will also print a copy of this for when I’ll be needing to come to my local PO. Thank you! 🙂

    1. They send them to you like normal mails when you have packages on their care. You will then have to claim your packages by showing them your claiming card/notice.

  7. This was a really helpful post. I ordered from TBD almost a month ago and my order hasn’t arrived so I’m worried, but after reading your story I’m inclined to wait it out. Great tip on the Florence Agreement – if have to go to the PO in my area I’ll bring a printed copy with me. Thank you!!

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