Start Here || The romance anthology I never knew I needed

Start Here

Title: Start Here: Short Stories of First Encounters
Authors: Agay Llanera, Bobbi Moran, Motzie Dapul, Danice Sison, Barbie Barbieto, H. Bentham, Ella Banta, Yeyet Soriano, Katt Briones, Brigitte Bautista
Editors: Ronald S. Lim, Brigitte Bautista
Genre and Themes: Romance Anthology
Format: eARC
Publication: 27 January 2018
Read: February 2018

the book { goodreads | amazon }
the authors { agay llanera | bobbi moran | motzie dapul | danice sison | barbie barbieto | h. bentham | ella banta | yeyet soriano | katt briones | brigitte bautitsta | ronald s. lim }

There’s a first time for everything. Gatecrashing a KPop concert with an oppa in a business suit. Taking shelter from the storm with the girl you’ve been meaning to shake off. That kiss that blurs the line between friendship and something more. A one-night stand (or, is it?) with your best friend from across the hallway.

Dive into these 10 stories of first encounters – unapologetically queer, happy endings required, with a smattering of that signature #romanceclass kilig. Whether you’re recalling your own firsts or out there looking for one, there’s a story in here for you.

So, go on.

Turn the page.

Start here.


– My Thoughts –

First of all, I would like to thank Tara Frejas for organizing this blog tour, letting me be a part of it and providing a review copy of the book!

My initial reaction when I read the synopsis was “Wow, #romanceclass really has a way of making me feel kilig just by reading a book summary.” If I remember correctly, I have very limited experience in reading books that are predominantly queer – the last one being You Know Me Well, which was just okay for me. When I first heard about this book, I had thoughts but when I read the synopsis – hah, I was sold instantly. And I am very much glad that I gave it a shot. Start Here is the romance anthology I never knew I needed. It stayed true to its promise of being “unapologetically queer” and having required happy endings.

Due to bad time management and cramming on my part, I read the book in just two days. This is not normal since I am a slow reader and usually, it takes me weeks just to finish a book. It didn’t matter. I guess I was going to finish it that quick either way. Every story is full of feels and butterflies and raw and fluffy love that every time one ends, it makes me want to read more. Which may probably explain the additional one or two circles under my eyes, thank you very much.

If I may also add, it is my first time reading the work of all these authors. Before I started reading, I set myself to pick one or two (or three) favorites but halfway into the book, I realized that it was an impossible task as each of them are equally lovely in their own ways.

Start Here is more than just a collection of meet-cutes. It’s a collection of stories on loving oneself, acceptance of one’s own body, and acknowledging one’s own emotions and feelings, awkward first meetings, and actually ‘seeing’ someone for the first time even after knowing them for so many years. (And happy endings!!) It is a pleasant reminder that love, indeed, knows no gender.

Here are some of my favorite lines from each of the stories:


Have you heard of Start Here or of #romanceclass before? Please share your thoughts in the comments below! ❤️💛💚💙💜




4 thoughts on “Start Here || The romance anthology I never knew I needed

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