Review + Giveaway: Only A Kiss by Ines Bautista-Yao

Only a Kiss
Author: Ines Bautista-Yao
Genre: Realistic Fiction, Romance
Publisher: Chamber Shell Publication
Date of Publication: 29 November 2014
When she was nine-years-old, Katie knew she wanted Chris to give her her first kiss. It wasn’t because she was in love with him (no way, he was her best friend! Besides, she was in love with his fourteen-year-old big brother), it was because she could make him do anything she wanted.

Besides, it didn't really mean anything. It was only a kiss after all.

But then things started to change. They grew up. They parted ways and went to different high schools. And other girls and boys—well, just one particular boy—came into the picture, throwing their lives upside down.
Told from the alternating points of view of Katie and Chris, this love story between two best friends will tug at your heartstrings and leave you thinking how the simplest things can mean so much.
Buy the book: Amazon |
Paperback copies are available at FullyBooked and National Bookstore if you reside in the Philippines!

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:
Connect with Ines: Blog | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads


But a few weeks later, while he was doing some groceries for his mom after school, something he actually enjoyed because he found it relaxing when there weren’t too many people, someone tapped him on the shoulder. “Haven’t been seeing you around.” He turned to see Iris, looking absolutely adorable in a blue tank top, skinny jeans, and orange Chucks. She had a faded yellow headband on and somehow, it made her entire face light up. He didn’t know how or why, he just noticed that it did. And right then, he knew he was powerless against her. “If I didn’t know any better, I’d think you were avoiding me.” She tilted her head to the side and looked up at him prettily. She knew she was cute, he realized. She knew he liked her. And he didn’t care. She was talking to him, wasn’t she? Did that mean she liked him too?

First line: Katie was only nine years old when she got her first kiss.

So, this book actually started when Katie and Christ were nine years old and Katie actually forced Chris to kiss her on her Ate Regina's wedding day to reverse the curse caused by her Kuya Ben (this is not Paranormal, people!). Through the years, the two have been each others confidant, best friend, brother/sister, and what we expect them to be—star-crossed lovers or not, a couple. Within this book, watch, or rather read, how Katie and Chris's lives takes on a journey to adulthood, witness how well they are mold to be the person they are to be, discover who they are, and to be with that one person they are to last forever.

I am in tears! This is actually a wholesome romance that everyone should read. It's like watching two person fall in love when they didn't know that they are already, fight, make up, be each other's confidant, and many more! It's like I've watched Katie and Chris grow old and go through rough roads and roller coaster rides of deep emotions bottling up and ready to burst! It was beautiful and magical—Cinderella style. Only that, Katie knew who the Prince Charming was. Cinderella didn't, alright.

So, let's talk about art and  let me start with the cover. I LOVE IT. I love art. It's simple, colorful and gay, it is really beautiful. If it were to be mine, and within reach, I would actually have it framed and hung on my wall like right now. It's so elegant with all this simplicity. Peering inside the book, there are also arts—typographies—which are done so perfectly that they fit the book. Every inch of it! The artist has done it really well! I think if I have the book in my hands, I'd also have it framed. Haha!

Now, back to the story. If you've been reading the stuff I've said up there, you might think I have actually loved the story from start to finish. Well, let me correct you, I have been through hell from the start. I'll clear things first. I LOVED THE BOOK and its whole concept but the first few chapters are really putting me to sleep. It was like so many things are happening in a chapter but the descriptions are vivid, and I liked that part. Puts my imagination to great use. Also, Little Katie plans too much and knows too much at nine. She was a little overachiever, though I liked her for this. At least she knows what she wants to happen. She's so determined to meet the things she wanted. And she loves her best friend so much that she even worries about who he will be marrying him when they grew up. On the other hand, I also liked Little Chris. That sweet, silent, artistic, care free little kid actually scares me. It didn't actually occur to me that he'd grow as a teenager that way. He managed to have his mind set at age sixteen. Knew what he wants to do, who he wants to love. But troubled Chris was really something. His past was something I never wanted to go back to. He's amazeballs. I love his guts. Some can say he was a coward but for me he was not. Well, okay he was. But just a little for me, though.

I am so sorry if you think I am putting much spoiler in this review. But the ending was the best part. It was deja vu. Nothing more. History repeats itself. Huzzah! Happy Reading!

Ines is giving away lots of things!

For Philippine residents:

One (1) winner will get a signed paperback of ONLY A KISS, a gift card from FILA, and a back issue of CAST comic book
Two (2) winners will each get a signed paperback of ONLY A KISS, light up laces, and back issue of CAST comic book

For everyone:

FIve (5) winners will each get an ebook of ONLY A KISS

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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