Thursday, May 7, 2015

[Blog Tour] Excerpt + Review + Giveaway: Buqo YA Bundle 2 Sweet Complications!

Hi everyone! It's time for another blog tour!

At last, Contemporary Filipino authors! I'm so stoked for this bundle of wonderful stories!
Sweet Complications is the second Buqo YA Bundle. It features several stories written by fellow Filipinos!

This tour is hosted by Oops! I Read A Book Again Book Tours! Follow the tour HERE to get more scoops!

Bundle Synopsis

Would you do a set of dares to prove someone wrong? Would you risk your friendship so you can find love? Would you admit your real feelings? There are a lot of complications when it comes to finding love. Get the feels when you read these sweet stories.

Story Synopses

D'01 by Sassy Fova

Kat Arcanghel has just turned 18 and she feels that it is the right time to fall in love. She finds herself falling for Alech Crisologo, but she has always thought of herself as adeviant/rebel and there’s nothing more mainstream than crushing on the guy that everybody loves, thus she fights her feelings and tries to search for the right one—just not him.

Will Kat continue rebelling against her own heart, or will she let her heart conquer the battle and let it lead the way? She’ll find the answer when she meets D’01.

One Lovely Summer Day by Amae Dechavez

Kwento ng Pag-Ibig, Pangarap, at Pag-asa...  Sa Pila, Laguna, bakasyon at abala ang lahat sa bahay nila Tiya Isidra—“general cleaning” ika ng matanda. Bukod pa roon ay darating si Maylie, ang paboritong pamangkin niyang galing ng Maynila. Gaya ng inaasahan, naroon si Ethan para tumulong sa paglilinis at paghahanda. Bagamat mukhang tahimik ang dalaga, unang sulyap pa lang ay agad na nagandahan at nabaitan si Ethan sa kaniya. Naging matalik na magkaibigan ang dalawa. Sa isang di inaasahang pangyayari at proyektong kailangang lutasin nilang dalawa, lalong napalapit si Ethan at Maylie sa isa-isa. Gayun pa man, alam ni Ethan na isang araw ay aalis din si Maylie at maiiwan siya. Sasabihin ba niya kay Maylie ang nararamdaman niya?

Once Upon A Sticky Note by Kristel Ann Cruz

Nate and Tanya have been “talk all day, every day” best friends for years but on the eve of Nate’s birthday, Tanya realized she has started developing more-than-platonic feelings him. They’re going off to college soon so confessing anything that might make things complicated between them doesn’t sound like a good plan, especially now that Campus Sweetie Armi has entered the picture. What would Tanya do? Could she? Should she? Grab a sticky note and place your bets.

Plain Vanilla by Ines Bautista-Yao

Despite her quirky name and equally quirky family, 16-year-old Tempest Juan knows she's ordinary. After reading a comment on Facebook which likened her to vanilla ice cream, Tempest decides she has to do something about it or be forever branded as plain, lukewarm, and well, vanilla. It doesn't help that the comment was made by Paco Lorenzo, her cousin’s cute friend (no longer cute in her book!). When she happens upon a book of dares, she decides to attempt each one, no matter how hard. This is her personality at stake, after all. But somehow, Paco, the cause of all this, finds a way to be at every dare Tempest attempts, confusing her and forcing her to question what’s really going on inside her heart.

Same by Charm Lee

March 2.

Of all places, Atasha never thought that she would end up in a hospital on this specific day. Rush was looking forward to just enjoying the day.

But with the white walls and medical noises around them, two young and very different souls cross paths. Rush and Atasha discover that even if they are as alike as night and day, they aren’t as different as they thought after all.

Travel of Two by Irish Fleur

Biyahe mag-isa? Check! Isa na namang item sa bucket list ni Isobel ang matutupad. Sino bang hindi magiging masaya kapag nagawa mo na ang gusto mo? Pero hindi lang pala si Isobel ang nagso-solo travel--si Arty rin. Si Arty na suplado, na-friendzone, makulit, at nakilala ni Isobel sa paglalakbay niya. At kahit ganito si Arty, mas naging exciting ang pagbiyahe ni Isobel.

So, magka-boyfriend... mache-check din nga ba ito ni Isobel sa sa bucket list niya?

Excerpt of Same by Charm Lee

I woke up today thinking that everything will be normal. I got out of bed at around 10am, and caught my reflection on my vanity mirror. Ugh, my long hair is all frizzy. I tried to comb my hair through it to kind of manage it but it didn’t work. Oh well.

I’m excited. I can’t wait to watch the new movie that everyone has been talking about. I wonder if it lives up to all the buzz that I have been hearing. I think I still have time after the movie to check out Robert’s. It’s Saturday so there is a new shipment of books that I can check out.

I can hear songs now blasting off from my mom’s room. It’s her favorite band. I ignore it. I’m looking for clothes to wear when my mom enters my room and asks me if I want to go with her and my dad to my aunt’s house. They just need to get something for my grandparents, then we can go to the department store after to buy some stuff that we need since we are renovating.

“Pass. I’m going to Robert’s.” I feel awkward whenever I hang out with my parents. I just feel like we have nothing in common and we won’t have anything to talk about. I hate social situations like that so I avoid it as much as possible.

I see the disappointment in my mom’s face, says okay and left me alone. I feel the guilt creeping in but I shrug it off.

She asked and I chose. She gave me an out so it’s okay.

I proceeded in getting ready for my alone day. After I’m all ready, I went downstairs to check on what I can eat on the go as I don’t really want to sit down and eat breakfast with them. I spy the peanut butter and bread. Perfect.

Review of Plain Vanilla by Ines Bautista-Yao

Plan Vanilla tells the story of Tempest Juan, a girl caught up in a wacky family which plans themed parties and occasions. She really does give off some sort of boring vibe, but that's just a minor and subconscious facade. When Paco Lorenzo, her cousin Margarita's best friend, made a comment affirming of the fact that she's boring (or so she thought), she ties everything up and decides to complete a list of dares. She realizes soon though, that Paco keeps on showing up at each of the dares Marga plans. This confuses her more and makes her think twice of what she's really feeling.

This story was told in the Third Person Limited point of view, and it fit the narration really well. Everything was brought up in vibrant and colorful imagery, and I found myself laughing at some parts of the dialogue. Ines's writing tugged at my gut and just blatantly made me realize that the story was, indeed, cute. Very cute, in fact. I liked how she integrated native words, which somewhat made me more familiar AND familial with Tempest and her surroundings.

And Tempest herself. I liked her name and its uniqueness. I also liked her personality. Not those perky and mean-girl wannabes, but the normal, and angsty teenager. I liked how she perceived things, and the fact that she did what needed to be done in order to prove herself. 

Additionally, Paco Lorenzo was that swoon-worthy leading male, whom Tempest thought of as cocky and stubborn (at first). He became kinda cheesy (in a Contemporary-YA-good way) as soon as they met during Valentine's. His attitude's also commendable, though. First, he's not a brat. He's a gentleman, and he treats everyone well. Of course, he also has that sparkle which some people might dub as "cute".

Overall, I think Plain Vanilla is a really interesting and cute story. I would've loved to see more of Tempest and Paco's and the Juans' story, but in itself, this short story could be considered good already. I really liked the writing and the imagery employed by Ines. 

I give this story 4 out of 5 grenades!

About the Authors

Sassy Fova

Sassy Fova is just your average girl from Ilocos Norte, PH. Sassy is a hopeless romantic who’s got her head in the clouds, and comes back down just long enough to write about it. Being an Ilocana, she is thrifty, but she spares none when it comes to sharing all the love.

Amae Dechavez

Amae Dechavez (amaeauthor) is a blogger, fiction author, YA novelist, and children's book writer. She was born in Quezon City, Manila in 1983 and has a Penn Foster diploma in Child Daycare Management. She has been authoring for several digital distributor hubs in (the Philippines) and has been writing for many free online/ social media platforms. When not hugging or arguing with her dog, you can find her at

Kristel Ann Cruz

It boggles the mind how someone so shy and awkward found herself in Public Relations, but somehow Krissy makes it work. If she were a fictional character, she’d be a female Ted Mosby. Whether it be prose, poetry, a watercolor painting, or a craft project, she is happiest when she makes. Talk about books, movies, and lipsticks with her on

Ines Bautista-Yao

Ines Bautista-Yao is the author of One Crazy Summer, What’s in your Heart, and Only a Kiss. She has also written two short stories, “Flashbacks and Echoes,” which is part of a compilation called All This Wanting and “A Captured Dream,” one of the four short stories in Sola Musica: Love Notes from a Festival.
She is the former editor-in-chief of Candy and K-Zone magazines and a former high school and college English and Literature teacher.  She is also a wife and mom and blogs about the many challenges and joys of motherhood at She has recently launched The Author Project, a section in her current blog devoted to the stories in her head:

Charm Lee

Aspiring hero wanting to save the world. TV show addict. all around shy girl.

Irish Fleur

Irish Fleur is a Licensed Pharmacist, cat lover and travel junkie who loves writing since she was seven years old.

Giveaway! (PH only)

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  1. Gah, I'm sad I missed out on this! Great review by the way! I'd greatly appreciate it if you checked out my blog at :)

    1. Thank you! I'd love to see your blog! :)

  2. Just a quick note: I've nominated you for the Liebster Award :) Rules are here:

  3. Tempest Juan and Paco Lorenzo just sound like such quirky names! Great review, Raffy! I'm glad to hear you enjoyed Plain Vanilla. :D

    1. YES their names are as quirky as themselves!
      Thank you!
      Yup, it was adorable and cute and everything!

  4. Wooow, I love it! Enjoy the weekend honey!

    I invite you to join my worldwide giveaways:
    Jexshop 10$ gift card & Polka dots dress

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    1. Thank you!

      ..... I might ACTUALLY do that ;)
      Thanks for the heads-up!