Genre: New Adult
About the book:
Aya Contreras is thrilled to be studying in the land of sakura and sushi. Tokyo is a fascinating city to live in—vending machines, cosplayers, karaoke boxes, and bright, colorful conbinis on every corner. And the architectural design program she’s in is everything she dreamed it to be.
The only problem? Her tutor doesn’t seem to like her.
Well, she doesn’t like him very much either. Sure, Ryohei Mori is talented, and there’s no denying he’s hot. But he’s also a surly, bossy know-it-all who eats too many cookies.
Another annoying thing about him is he’s nosy. And when he stumbles upon the crazy bucket list Aya’s sisters forced on her, he teases her mercilessly about it.
But when their professor pairs them up for a design competition, things get . . . interesting. Fueled by beer and a whole lot of cookies, can Aya and Ryo cross out some items on her bucket list without killing each other? Or will they realize there’s much more to each other than they’d originally thought??
Fun, light, and totally overflowing with feels, Bucket List to Love was the kind of story I needed as I intentionally took short breathers from a very stressful week while I juggled work deadlines and birthday preparations for my little girl. I read a few chapters each night before I went to sleep and while I had some me-time at the loo (haha) and I was glad that the work week ended at the same time I finished reading Aya and Ryo’s story. It was awesome to cap a busy week with something heartwarming and sweet.
Ms. Santi made Japan happen for me. I saw this beautiful country through Aya’s eyes, and not just the touristy parts I get to see and read on the internet but also those which one gets to see if one lives in a place like Tokyo. I had a bit of difficulty with the Japanese words but I finally got the hang of it as the story progressed.
I love Aya’s character. I admire her passion for her work and career and I can only thrive in the geeky-ness of it all. I am not updated in Japanese pop culture but reading about Ryo made me curious. I wanted to have someone to peg him on. I want to see Ryo in real life — listen to him speak, watch him eat, drink beer with him, see him smile, bake him cookies…
Bucket List to Love is distinctly Filipino and I loved how the story showed Filipino culture as displayed by Filipinos who are living abroad. I also love the Filipino names for Aya and her sisters. The element of family is also something I truly appreciate as well the beautiful nature of women friendships. I enjoyed Aya’s conversations (and close ties) with her sisters.
Ms. Santi truly knows her romance. Although the fun banter and kilig scenes are already familiar to me, I still enjoyed each moment because, why not? Aya and Ryo (and Japan!) more than made up for what could have been a not so new love story. I wish to have a read more details on the “bucket list”, though, because I had to go back from time to time and check if indeed Aya was able to complete it. But other than that minor complaint, I really loved Bucket List to Love. It gave me doses of happy energy even though I was tired of some real life, adult stuff, and I guess for that, the author has accomplished what romance fiction should be for readers like me: make us feel that life and love is worth living for.
“I guess everything happens for a reason.”
My Rating: 4/5 stars.
About the Author:
C.P. Santi is a Filipina author based in Tokyo, Japan. She is a wife to an engineer / indie songwriter 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.
Get in touch with C.P. Santi:
Twitter / Wattpad / Instagram: @arkicpsanti