- Turned 90 years old, today, 3 December 2014. He was born on Dec. 3, 1924 in Rosales, Pangasinan.
- Has outlived and out-produced most of his contemporaries.
- He is perhaps the most widely known abroad with most of his writings translated into 22 foreign languages which is more than those of any other Filipino writer and well ahead of Jose Rizal’s Noli Me Tangere and El Filibusterismo.
- Has a five-novel masterpiece, the Rosales saga, consisting of (1) The Pretenders, (2) Tree, (3) My Brother, My Executioner, (4) Mass, and (5) Po-on, wherein he was able to tell Philippine history while simultaneously narrating the lives of generations of the Samsons whose personal lives intertwine with the social struggles of the nation.
- Founder of the Philippine chapter of the international organization PEN.
- Awarded the Ramon Magsaysay Award for Journalism, Literature, and Creative Communication Arts in 1980.
- Received the Outstanding Fulbrighters Award for Literature in 1988.
- He was bestowed the CCP Centennial Honors for the Arts in 1999.
- He has also won the Chevalier dans l’Ordre des Arts et Lettres from France in 2000.
- National Artist for Literature award in 2001.
- Also received the Pablo Neruda Centennial Award in 2004
- Owner of Solidaridad Bookshop on Padre Faura Street in Ermita, Manila which offers mostly hard-to-find books and Filipiniana reading materials.