#SparkPlugs || EXCERPT: Rules of Non-Attraction by Andrea Soto-Pionilla

First things first: Don’t forget to follow #SparkPlugs on Twitter to see the rest of the Spark Books line-up in this blog series!

Do take that trip to your nearest National Bookstore or Powerbooks or go ONLINE to get your print copy of Rules of Non-Attraction.

Rules of Non-Attraction by Andrea Soto-Pionilla
It wasn’t love at first sight. It wasn’t even lust at first, second or third.

Alexa and Ivan are just friends – roommates, at that. For him, she’s a scheming, social-climbing she-devil. For her, he’s a stiff, boring know-it-all. Should be fun, right?

Of course, things don’t ever go as planned.

Quitting the high-paying dream job, squandering rent money, and getting unceremoniously dumped pale in comparison to the bigger problem of falling in love with the most unexpected person.


“I told you never ever date a guy named BJ,” Ivan said, not unkindly, offering her a small, wry smile.

Alexa now found it difficult to look at him. This time, it wasn’t about him being ugly; it was the I-told-you-so expression she couldn’t quite take. So she turned the other way and rested her back against the crook of his shoulder instead. “Haha. Isn’t he supposed to be your friend?”

Ivan squirmed slightly, but Alexa didn’t care. He was supposed to give her comfort, not the other way around. “Well? Isn’t he?” she pressed.

“Well, yeah, sort of.”

She placed her wine glass on the coffee table and settled back into the warmth Ivan’s body offered. “What do you mean ‘sort of’?”

“Alexa.” He sounded serious all of a sudden. “You must know BJ was never a saint. He still isn’t. I don’t know if he ever will be.”

“But we looked so great together!” She unlocked her phone and swiped through several of their pictures. “It was a perfect match. See those dimples? The awesome hair? How could I not like him? It’s just impossible not to!”

“The awesome hair?” Ivan sounded like he was choking.

“Admit it, Ive – he’s really, really fun. Game for anything. You know how he is.”

“I don’t actually.”

“You don’t what?” she practically snapped.

He sighed. “I don’t know how he is. We’re not friends anymore.”

Alexa frowned. “Huh? When did that happen?”

Ivan didn’t say anything for a few moments. “Picking up random girls, bringing them home. I just… I just couldn’t stand what he was doing to you.”

It was Alexa’s turn to run out of words. He truly sounded protective. And hurt. He seemed more affected than her theoretically broken heart.

She leaned back into him again and rested her head against his chin, just as a million questions flooded her mind. Ignore him, she instructed herself firmly, even as she felt an uncomfortable rumble in her chest. This is about BJ and me.

“But he seemed so perfect,” she moaned wistfully. She forced a picture of her ex-boyfriend in her mind. “Wasn’t he just so, so perfect?”

“You’re perfect, Alexa,” Ivan whispered into her hair.

Alexa froze as the image of BJ instantly vanished from her thoughts.

What the hell was going on here? Was this the merlot talking? What was up with this “you’re perfect” and “I couldn’t stand what he was doing to you” crap? This was not the Ivan she knew! Where was Ugly Dude one who ignored her taunts and fought back with scathing, witty remarks? Where was the guy who pretended to hate her but would come running to her with one phone call?

Her eyes widened.

Was Ivan in love with her?

Andrea Soto-Pionilla
About the Author

Andrea started writing at age 11. Her first completed manuscript was about a 16-year-old version of herself meeting a boy band member and becoming his girlfriend, thinking it could be a future possibility. She has thankfully come to her senses since then.

Andrea lives in Metro Manila, Philippines with her husband and their son.


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