Day 8 – Drama Queen

Game for yet another chick lit from a Filipino author? Here’s another one from Abi Aquino.

Even for a struggling actress like 26-year old Kach, love doesn’t come easy. Especially if your timing is off and you miss your cue and forget to deliver the right lines at the right time…

Beautiful, talented and starving, theater actress Kach, who has a real penchant for drama, lives off the refrigerators and affection of her dearest childhood friends: Nats, a chef who has taken it upon herself to play mother to Kach, and Jorge, an overachieving research genius who balances off Kach when she starts overreacting and who gladly supplies much-needed warm hugs when her world – or her tiny Makati apartment – dramatically turns cold.

Now Kach has finally landed a legitimate role costarring an intense, sexy and brooding young stage actor named Sanchez. Their onstage chemistry quickly reaches boiling point and overflows into real-life, and suddenly Kach finds herself in a super-kilig affair, complete with snatches of smooches behind closed stage curtains.

But their romance takes a dramatic turn when Kach discovers that Sanchez isn’t tailor-made for the role of her real-life leading man…and that someone else is ready and willing to audition!

Drama Queen by Abi Aquino

This is chick lit in the real sense.

Girl gets to have a short steamy affair before realizing that she’s been kissing the Frog all this time and that Prince Charming is just within arm’s reach. With that kind of clue, you’d have guessed by now who Kach will end up with. But as I still find this story really kilig (I don’t know why when Kach is not that likeable as a female lead), I’ll let you in on a little clue (yet hoping I’m not divulging too much): some people have a way of sneaking up on you. One time, you act normally around them, not entertaining any thoughts of dating them or anything. The next, you see them in a different light and just can’t stop berating yourself for not realizing that sooner. Basta! Just read this book and enjoy! 😉

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Image taken using a Panasonic Lumix DMC-F2. © Pachuvachuva, 2011.
“L*ve Only logo © Pachuvachuva, 2011.

TRIVIA: For our non-Filipino readers, basta roughly equates to “that’s it“. Some expression you use when you mean “that’s it” / can’t explain further / just take my word for it. Or so I’d like to translate (I’m no expert. Hehe) 😀

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Day 7 – No Strings Attached

According to the popular Bible story, God may have rested on the seventh day, but here at Pachuvachuva, we don’t.

Now onto today’s offering for the Love in 28 Days countdown. 🙂

No Strings Attached - Mina Esguerra

Carla is a whiz at her job: she’s efficient, reliable, and a total genius when it comes to putting something together at the last minute. The snag is she’s single and turning the big three-oh in a few months. Her girl best friend (yes, she’s married just like the other girls in Carla’s barkada) keeps trying to set her up with stable banker-types, while her guy best friend (single – the other single one) encourages her to play the field – no strings attached. Then, through no set up or extraordinary circumstance, Carla meets Dante. Hot, smug, sexy Dante. Definitely not a banker-type and seemingly too good to be true. So there’s got to be a catch. There is. He’s five years younger. Is the universe telling Carla to finally let loose and enjoy a fling with a younger man? Or is there a lot more to this awkward situation than she bargained for?

I like Carla and how strong her voice is although there weren’t too many situations presented to witness just how uber capable she is in terms of work. Well, since the author did mention that fact, it would have been wiser to illustrate just how good she is. Just my two cents. 🙂

It saddens me that no matter how much we women have advanced in terms of our career and personal growth, people still give us that look when they see that no rings adorn our fingers. Why is the idea of not being in a relationship still viewed as something horrendous when in fact, it is the perfect time for one to really learn about herself and discover the world around him? While I am not opposed to having relationships (yes, I am currently in one and happy at that, well, when I’m not PMS-ing or just plain irritable, hehe), since I believe that relationships give a different color to our world, but at the same time, I am just quite happy in my own company thankyouverymuch.

But my friends and relatives might not have thought so.

Backtrack 5 years ago, and you would have seen me squirming in my seat in front of a blind date that a friend or officemate set up. I know that they meant well but sometimes it’s exasperating having to endure yet another date that you know will not end well or a date that you had to go to lest you offend your friends. Too bad though they didn’t think that their meddling offended me. Hehe

Anyways, as for this book, I like it very much. Ms. Esguerra did a good job writing about a less than talked about topic that plagues some women (cradle snatching, anyone? ;)) However, I’m just confused about how Carla had to explicitly underscore her very platonic relationship with single guy friend, Tonio. Somehow, I was just given a hint that the author wanted that as some sort of red herring lest the reader figures out how the book will end before the 200 pages or so are up. But other than that, I enjoyed the experience thoroughly. Learned some lessons, too.

And oh, somehow, while reading, I was imagining Paul Jake Castillo being Dante. I really don’t know why I thought of him as such. Must be his signature PBB “responsible/cool/rich” guy ‘tude that did it. ^_^

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Image taken using a Panasonic Lumix DMC-F2. © Pachuvachuva, 2011.
“L*ve Only logo © Pachuvachuva, 2011.

You can find a lengthier review of this novel here. 🙂

Day 5 – Royally Jacked

For Day 5, we offer you this short young love story from Niki Burnham.

Valerie’s life is pretty good. While she’s not the most popular girl in school, she does have decent grades, great friends, and a potential boyfriend. All a girl could want.

Then her mother announces that (1) she’s gay, and (2) she’s leaving Valerie’s dad for her girlfriend. Not what Valerie envisioned for her future. And just when Valerie is getting over this bombshell, her father tells her he’s gotten a new job as protocol chief for the royal family of some obscure European country.

Valerie’s world has come unglued. She can either stay in Virginia with her mom and her uber-organized, veggie-burger-eating girlfriend, or go with her dad, leaving everything she knows for some place she’s never heard of. Valerie opts to go, and quickly discovers that it was a mistake – until she meets the prince, and all bets are off!

Royally Jacked by Niki Burnham

Burnham created a hilarious story without sacrificing dialogue for funny-ness. This is recommended for those who have long since wished how it is to date a member of the royalty. And speaking of which, I used to keep a photo of Prince William (THE Prince William, Kate Middleton’s Prince William, the William who’s next in line to the throne, that William :D) which I have photocopied from a former high school classmate’s magazine. That was way before the popularity of internet. So juvenile, I know. But my only consolation was that I wasn’t the only one who did that. For girls who grew up on fairy tales, dreaming and fantasizing about princes and being swept away is sort of second nature. 😀

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Image taken using a Panasonic Lumix DMC-F2. © Pachuvachuva, 2011.
“L*ve Only logo © Pachuvachuva, 2011.

TRIVIA: Valerie’s story doesn’t end there. Author Burnham has 2 more tales as follow up to this romantically crazy adventure. Check out Spin Control and Do-Over.

Day 4 – Getting to Third Date

Getting to Third Date - Kelly McClymer

Katelyn Spears is a firm believer in the two-date rule. First dates are awkward; every guy deserves a second chance. But a third? Not unless he’s got serious Romeo potential.

Enter Tyler. Tyler thinks Katelyn’s rule is too harsh. He dares her to go back through her Little Pink Book and grant a third date to all the two-date duds. Oh, and she should report back to the whole school via her newspaper column.

Determined to prove Tyler wrong, Katelyn makes a few phone calls. But will any of her old flames rekindle a romance?

I like the story because I can relate to Katelyn’s character. How she agreed to do the “Mother Hubbard” column, their school paper’s century-old Agony Aunt section, just because she was cornered by Tyler – THE Tyler who makes her heart palpitate, makes her agree to anything he says, makes her do the column even if she would seriously quit it had the circumstances been any different. That Tyler.

And why did I say that I can relate to that?

Because not just once did I had a major major crush on a fellow member of the editorial board. Flashback some years ago in high school, I got lucky and got accepted as junior writer for the school paper (even if I was just accompanying some friends then when they took the qualifying exams. Because I didn’t have anything better to do, I took the exam, too, and the rest is history. :D). That first meeting with school paper staff, my cutie radar zoomed in on one of the senior writers and my sophomore year just turned out super. And it’s not that I have a thing for writers but had 2 more writer crushes (who were my good friends at the same time. Was such a stalker. Hehe) until I graduated from HS. 😀

College. Now it was a tango turned bad. First we hated each other. Then I kind of liked him. Then a year or so after he became our senior artist/cartoonist, he kind of liked me. But since we’re so bad with spoken words that we never really admitted to anything until I graduated. Maybe in the back of our minds, we felt that our friendship was way more important (boo!!! if a guy/girl tells you this, then he/she doesn’t really like you enough to risk it) and decided not to pursue a relationship. Sad but that’s how life is sometimes. Hehe

But now, back to the book as I’ve already segued too much. 😀

So there I’m recommending the book if you’re into crushing on someone in silence while taking your sweet time devising a no-fail strategy to get your man or girl. 🙂

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Image taken using a Panasonic Lumix DMC-F2. © Pachuvachuva, 2011.
“L*ve Only” logo © Pachuvachuva, 2011.