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Review and Giveaway: Buqo YA Bundle 3, Finding Fairytales

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Title :
Buqo YA Bundle 3: Finding Fairytales
Language: English/Filipino
Buy Links: buqo

Read the review, and/or synopsis by clicking on the title:

When Cocoy Became Kikay by C. P. Santi (Review)
Fall for Grace by Anne Plaza – (Review)
Just the Way You Are by Kat Sales – (Review)
Love in the Time of Viral Videos by R. Linea
The First Time They Met by Ana Valenzuela
The Path of Us by Cassandra Javier


FINDING FAIRYTALES

We all want the happy ending, the dream come true. But what if it doesn’t happen? How far would you go to get that “ever after?” Would you change who you are? Would you swallow your pride? Is the story really going to be as perfect as you think? Follow the path of these characters and see where they lead.

 

When Cocoy Became Kikay by C. P. Santi

Cocoy’s not-so-secret dream is to one day become a gun-toting, ass-kicking secret agent. But she has another dream—and this time, even her best friends don’t have a clue—she dreams of being with someone.

Problem is, she finds out that Jaime Arguelles—a.k.a. the guy she’d been secretly crushing on for years—likes girls who . . . well . . . like pink.

To Cocoy’s logical mind, there’s only one solution: it’s time to go girly. After all, how hard can it be?

Review:

I love how this fits everything a Young Adult story is for me. It has friendship, in the form of Cocoy’s three friends. Cocoy may be an only child but these three young men are substitutes well enough for annoying brothers. They love her to bits, and as the conflict ensued with Cocoy and Jaime, they waited in the sidelines with quiet understanding until she came back to them. There is humor, with Cocoy’s snark and spunky attitude. And the funny exchanges between her and the three boys as she transforms from Cocoy to Kikay. I was laughing at them all time (because I have annoying male cousins who do the same to me). Their teasing, the name calling (Lablab), the adventures they had when they were kids and the weird food they ate (chippy, pan de sal and Nutella, really? And what is buko pandan royal?). Of course, there is also romance. Now, I’m not a very big YA Romance fan but I liked how it figured into the story. It wasn’t focused on the lovey-dovey aspect, but more of a tool for Cocoy to explore her feminine side and learn to be herself. And last but not least, my favourite-absolute-must have ingredient in a YA, self-discovery. As Cocoy tries out “being a girl” she discovers that no matter what other people think, she can be girly (wear pink) and still become a top secret agent.

When Cocoy Became is Kikay is my number 1 read in this bundle. I absolutely related to everything in the story (because I wanted to be a Ghostbuster before meeting my first crush). I loved how the light and funny narration kept me entertained through out, while hitting on important themes like friendship, and self discovery.

About the Author

C.P. Santi is a Filipina author based in Tokyo, Japan. She is a wife to an engineer/musician/jokester and a full-time mom to two energetic boys. She loves cooking and baking, and enjoys feeding people, gorging on chocolate, watching J-doramas, belting it out in the karaoke box, and running around the house playing tickle tag. She also loves dreaming up stories about the people she meets.

In another life, she is also an architect and academic.

Her first book, Be Careful What You Wish For, is a contemporary romance based in Tokyo.

Follow C.P. Santi: Twitter | Blog

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Fall for Grace by Anne Plaza

Aso’t pusa, away-bati…
Sino sa inyo ang unang aamin?

Meet Grace Almeda—the darling of Luna East Arts Academy—maikukumpara sa isang artista sa hitsura, reputasyon, at katarayan. At heto si Jason Jacinto—the resident school genius—kilala rin sa pagiging go-to person ng mga estudyanteng problemado sa pag-aaral. Nang magkabanggaan ang kanilang maliit at magkaibang mundo, napilitan si Grace na hingin ang tulong ni Jason sa isang mala-life or death na sitwasyon. Mukha ngang pumuti na ang uwak dahil dumating ang araw na kinailangan ni Little Miss Spoiled Brat si Boy Genius. Pero ang hindi alam ni Grace ay may dahilan ang lahat sa likod ng pang-aasar at pambubwisit ni Jason. At sa ‘di inaasahang pangyayari, may isang mahuhulog ang loob para sa isang naghihintay lang ng tamang pagkakataon.

Review:

My second favourite in the BuquoYA Bundle 3, Fall For Grace. While reading in Filipino isn’t my usual thing, I decide to have a go at it and I was really glad I did. I’ve never liked bullies or mean girls in school and I always enjoy a good story where the mean girl falls from her pedestal and learns the real meaning of her life. It started out like a very typical cat and dog relationship with the rich girl Grace Almeda versus the scholar Jason Jacinto.  When Grace’s father’s business fails, Grace had to learn to pick up the pieces and actually work for her education as a scholar herself. Call me a masochist, but do I love a little bit of suffering to mold a good heroine. I loved how, by losing all their money, Grace finds out who her real friends are and what hard work really means. She also learns about the true value of family, and what really keeps them together.  There were a few moments when the story seemed to slow down a bit for me, but it was a really great read, with Plaza nicely wrapping up the main plot and the sub plots that were on the side (and nothing makes me happier than seeing all those plots neatly lined up, complete in the end). I am hoping the other characters, Max and Floyd or Sheila (or maybe even Bianca) would get their own stories too.  Sounds really interesting *hint hint, wink wink*

About the Author

Si Anne Plaza ay mula sa Lungsod Quezon at nakapagsulat ng isang chick lit novella, ang In Over Her Head (2013). Ang Fall for Grace ay ang una niyang kathang YA romance. Nagtatrabaho siya bilang isang marketing associate para sa isang ad agency at malimit siyang nagsusulat kahit hindi pa tapos ang kanyang shift. Nakahiligan na niyang magbasa ng Tagalog romance novels (noong kapanahunan pa nina Helen Meriz, Jo-An Solis, Gilda Olvidado, atbp.) at nakapag- publish na rin ng apat na akda sa ilalim ng My Special Valentine.

Follow Anne PlazaBlog | Twitter | Facebook

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Just the Way You Are by Kat Sales

Rica Valdez has always been one of the guys, so it was hard for her to find a prom date. When her new friend and crush Joshua Fernandez volunteered to take her to the prom, she wondered if he liked her back too, or was he just being nice?

Review:

 I love this story mainly because of the characters. Rica, because she is so cute, being a girl with different interests than the usual. I completely understand what she went through. Having met my husband in an online game, finding a boy who would love Rica the way she is is something I hope for for every video game loving-arcade ass kicking-comic book reading young lady out there. Brandish your swords and your super powers, young ladies! There is always some one for us.

Joshua is just the sweet kid that he is. It’s just cute how YA guys get really confused when they start feeling something for the girl. How he would kick himself internally for a mistake. Just goes to show how much he wanted to make Rica happy. Although I found some of his dialogue sound a little too mature for his age, my favourite line was from him.

“What are you doing here? We were going to meet at the hotel.”

Joshua shrugged. “You said it, but I didn’t exactly agree. Besides, it’s tradition for the guy to pick up his date for the prom.”

“Says who?”

“My mom.” Joshua grinned.

Ha! Love a kid who listens to his mom. And I can just imagine that smug grin he had on his face. (When you’re a teenager, you can’t argue with The Mom, really).

Just the Way You Are caps my top three favourites among the anthology. With the tiniest hint of a fairy tale, it is sweet and short making Rica, the video game loving princess and Joshua, the basketball playing prince, a cute pair.

About the Author

Writer :: Thinker :: Problem Solver

Follow Kat Sales: Blog | Twitter

 

Love in the Time of Viral Videos by R. Linea

Like. Retweet. Follow. Fall in Love?

They say that that the things we own tend to own us in the long run. Today, at a time when we’re connected 24 hours a day and 7 days a week, social media has helped shaped who we are, how we want to be seen and how we deal with other people. And if that’s the case, then who knows us better than our own social media accounts? This is the story of Patch and Sebastian who met in real life, as told by their digital selves. This is their story in the time of #hashtags, inspiration boards, and viral videos.

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The First Time They Met by Ana Valenzuela

What’s making Mayumi anxious on her best friend’s birthday party?

Is it her long time best friend Marie? Marie is now in college, and Mayumi starts to doubt their friendship as Marie meets new people and gets closer to them.

Or is it this basketball player named Micah? A guy she recently met and who has turned into an overnight confidant.

About the Author:

Ana Valenzuela is a graduate of AB Literature from UST. She has written for several magazines and online news blogs.

Follow Ana Valenzuela: Blog | Twitter

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The Path of Us by Cassandra Javier

Are our paths already laid out for us, or can we make them ourselves?

Can fairytales actually come true?

Clara has always been fond of fairytales and grand gestures. She always had a plan of how she’d like her life to turn out, and that’s why she worked hard to be on top of the class, and make sure that she has her real life Prince Charming to boot.

And then there’s Andrew.

Andrew’s always been the easy go lucky guy, but that doesn’t mean that he’s not smart and appealing; it’s just that he chooses to go through life in a fuss-free, no nonsense way.

When Andrew and Clara’s paths meet, things don’t exactly go easy. They hated each other with a passion, but then they got to share unexpected moments, and end high school with a memory that they’ll never forget. In college, they lose each other, and Clara has to go through the hardest things on her own–until a trip back home sends them to each other’s paths again.

Will they ever be able to understand their role in each other’s lives?

Or will they just get out of each other’s lives for good?

About the Author

Cass is a cat lady who graduated with a degree in Broadcasting and has worked as a copywriter, a researcher in an IT company, a call center agent and was even a trainee for a time in a television network. She writes articles for a living. When not writing articles, she writes novels, fanfiction, short stories and whatever she may think of. She loves TV series, movies, music, and is a very big bookworm. She’s also addicted to butterflies, faeries and Ice Cream.

Follow Cassandra Javier:  Blog | Twitter | Facebook

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Giveaway

Buqo is giving away ONE POWERBANK (Philippines only)!
Click on the RAFFLECOPTER LINK to join!

My last word

Overall, the BuqoYA Bundle 3 is worth the read. Some of the stories I didn’t review simply because I didn’t connect with them. But all the stories had good writing and great plots.  I will be getting a copy of the stories, and will definitely look forward to all the authors who participated in this anthology.

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Author: Lorn (pakwanstripes)

Yogi, book lover, comic book reader, cat moma and diabetic :)

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