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Book Journaling: ‘Stay A Little Longer’ by Dawn Lanuza

by KB Meniado

Two weeks before this goes out to the world, and if you’re a romance reader or a Dawn Lanuza fan second-guessing yourself about pre-ordering or getting this book, this might help you somehow. So stay a little longer to watch and read more below!


They were perfect strangers—all perks, no strings. Until they weren’t.

Elan wasn’t supposed to meet Caty. She lived halfway around the world, and he barely left Manila. Yet here he was, giving her a ride to the airport. Convinced that they would never have to see each other again after that day, Elan and Caty started to bond over truths, dares, stolen kisses, and games in hotel rooms and bars. 

With brief encounters that turned them from acquaintances to friends — tipping to the point of lovers, always — will Elan and Caty keep settling for a day, or will someone finally dare to stay long enough to discover: Is this love? 

It’s BoJo-worthy but is it also Bookshelf-worthy?

Yes, if we’re going by the cover alone because so pretty, but hey that’s not all there is to it. So I want to say this is more for readers stepping into a long-distance relationship, or those already in one, because this romance about a couple in their mid-20s captures such an intimate and resonating account of being apart trying to make it work.

In both Caty and Elan, I saw my self—ambitious but hesitant, willing but afraid. They both know there’s something real and solid between them, yet are not blind to the fact that the distance and time difference (Manila-New York) will not work to their advantage. Add to that, they have pasts to move on from, lives to lead, family to attend to, career goals to achieve.

But what do they do? They keep the connection alive and active, every chance they get.

And that’s the beauty of it—that willingness to take risks even though clouds of doubt and fear hover. Sure, it was a little excruciating for me to witness Caty and Elan drag themselves to realization but I found their journey heavily accurate. LDR is not at all a joke—I’d go to the lengths of saying it’s harder, in the way it requires more effort, more constant communication, more patience, more trust and faith—and so I did understand Caty’s self-denial and sabotage (“am I even worth it, I can’t put this much pressure on him”) and Elan’s hesitation (“do I deserve her, how can make it work?”). There’s also the issue of career for her and family for him, both very valid concerns especially in a Filipino setup as these are crucial factors to consider when transitioning from LDR to actually being together, so difficult, very difficult.

But thankfully, like in real-life, there are people who got Caty and Elan’s backs to remind them that “when you know, you know” and that they owe it to themselves to see it through and make it happen, and make it happen right away. In the words of the great Lucian, Caty’s best friend in New York, “one has to be braver.” (Elan’s sister, Gia, also weighs in the same thought, and gosh, just how great this cast of characters is??)

So do they make it? Do they get a happy ending?

Guaranteed. I won’t spoil anything the how but Caty and Elan eventually figure it out and get there, the resolution and reunion sweet and satisfying. And you know, their story might teach you a thing or two about your relationship, long distance or not. That said, no matter what kind of books you read, take the risk with Stay A Little Longer.


Note: This story is also set in the universe of The Hometown Hazard by the same author.

The reviewer read a galley. Excerpts and quotes may not reflect final version. READ ALL BOOK JOURNALING POSTS HERE. READ OUR REVIEW POLICY AND SUBMISSION GUIDELINES HERE.

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