Book Report: Plain Vanilla by Ines Bautista-Yao

I am not really a big ice cream eater (aside from the occasional cravings) but Plain Vanilla made me want to go to an ice cream store right now so I could figure out what ice cream flavor suits me. 😀

What the book’s about.


Juan Family is known to be the crazy kind, eccentric perhaps, in a super fun way. But next to her cousin Marga, who was colorfully described in the book and a certified Juan, Tempest appeared to be dull and boring. That suddenly had to change when an overly cute boy Paco, Marga’s bestfriend, called her straight-laced and a vanilla. Tempest suddenly wanted to dare herself to do things she’d never done before. At first she said she wanted to do the dares to prove herself that she can also be adventurous, and it would help her become a better person. But as Paco found his way to be involved in the dares that Tempest were about to do, she realizes the truth that perhaps, she wanted to prove Paco that she wasn’t the girl he thought she was.

The Y.A. book that gave me an ultimate kilig factor.

Plain Vanilla reminded me a bit of Lola and the Boy Next Door, except that Tempest wasn’t exactly like Lola (and I love the characters’ unusual names – Tempest and Paco). I was on the first few pages of this short read and I could already feel myself smiling, because it of the simple gestures and the way the characters converse that gave it the ultimate kilig factor. I could easily imagine the way Paco spoke to Tempest, and I felt for Tempest that churning sensation when she noticed every detail of Paco’s cuteness. Those were indeed, too high school!

The book effectively brought me back as well to some episodes of my younger years. The champorado mornings, hanging out with cousins on weekends and that ultimate feeling of rejection when I found out that the guy I was crushing is allegedly crushing someone else. But yeah, who didn’t go through that? I love the support system that Tempest got from her cousins – the free-spirited Marga and the ever-wise Clara made it all balanced that Tempest already has the source for two not-so-contrasting point of views.

Indeed, Plain Vanilla is a short read but ultimately sweet. It is a perfect read for Valentine’s Day, especially if you are planning to go on a trip that weekend, or spend a lazy afternoon at home. Get it from Buqo by clicking here.


Beth G.


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