Review + Playlist: The Boyfriend Backtrack by Dawn Lanuza

Monday, April 13, 2015

The Boyfriend Backtrack
Title: The Boyfriend Backtrack
Author: Dawn Lanuza
Date of Publication: October 3, 2014

If they say that life flashes right before your eyes when you die, do you also get a flashback of your exes when your perfect boyfriend is proposing to you? At least that's the case for Regina Cortez. There's her dramatic high school boyfriend, her first college crush, the irresistible heart breaker, and the ever elusive one. By backtracking to her past, will Regina make it to 'I Do'? Or will she just keep running away?

Purchase from Amazon | Smashwords

For Philippine residents, you can also order the paperback here!


My Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Thank you to Dawn for the review copy! Having received one did not affect my views of the novel.

So, how do I approach this review? Let's just get the ~serious~ and ~technical~ (please stop me from using tildes) aspects of this novella before I get to the spazzing because THERE WILL BE SPAZZING.

(First, it was a bit weird to read this book at first because my best friend's name is Regina and I started reading this while I was lounging on her bed. #random)

Plot. I like the plot, you guys. I mean, your boyfriend proposes to you and then a montage of your previous boyfriends/not-boyfriends flash before your eyes. SO ROM-COM. What a bait for me.

Style. The Boyfriend Backtrack is narrated by Regina but the present is interspersed with non-linear flashbacks showing us her previous relationships. Which is amazing! Even though sometimes I get confused by the timeline (because it was so late in the night and my brain wasn't 100% functioning), I appreciate the nonlinearity because, memories don't come to you chronologically. I also like how we basically have an idea on who's a jerk and who's creepy but we're still waiting for Dawn Lanuza to dish out the actual story via flashbacks. So, while it's not frustrating because the reader is not 100% in the dark, you still anticipate and crave for the story.

Voice. I love Regina's voice and her ill-timed jokes. I can SO relate to her. Working to make a living but not loving your job. Wanting to pursue other things. Regina's so cynical and I love that! She also runs away from her problems and avoids confrontations and I could totally relate to her in those aspects. In fact, Regina's growth was one I really enjoyed reading about.

And now to ~THE FEELS~. (Darn it, tildes.) Guys, PERFECT ENDING FOR THE STORY. Perfect use of certain songs. Admittedly, I was pretty sure I'll give The Boyfriend Backtrack three stars (It was good but my investment in the story wasn't like my investment in four-star reads) until the bits near the end when Dawn wrote about perfectly scored moments in life. Because I've been thinking about that a lot! I always thought how it would be awesome to have background music playing in the key scenes of your life. Then, just, a certain guy Regina dated was so sweet and kind and just he hit all the right notes. I wouldn't spoil you guys but just, GIDDY FEELS.

I highly recommend The Boyfriend Backtrack for contemporary romance fans! It's a short read too and you'll read it in one go. Satisfying, this novel will give you giddy feelings and sad feelings but mostly I'm-getting-red-in-the-face-from-the-sweetness feelings. Eek!


So for anyone who doesn't know, Dawn has A+ taste in music. In fact, I stalk her blog for all the music recs she doles out. Come on, the girl introduced me to The Drowners and Bleachers and Jamie T and I could go on and on. So I thought I'd make a mini playlist for The Boyfriend Backtrack because music! Moreover, certain songs played HUGE roles in this novella (I STILL GET RED WHEN I THINK OF HERE COMES YOUR MAN) so it's very fitting, isn't it? I'm choosing one song per guy Regina dated and while the song will not encompass the whole relationship, key lyrics just made me think of each guy. Here goes!


Awkward by San Cisco

I thought I saw you last night
Get out of my life you've been stalking me for days


Hello by Martin Solveig feat. Dragonette

I could stick around and get along with you, hello.
It doesn't really mean that I'm into you, hello.


Warning by Autre Ne Veut

And I run and tell you what I know you damage me
I would never wanna see your face again


Paralyse by Polarheart

I've been thrown by the wayside
Got dragged out by the riptide
Take me back to the daylight
I know now what it is to
Sink so low that you can't move
I've been paralysed by you


Best Thing by We Were Evergreen

you could have been the best thing for me

About Dawn Lanuza

Dawn Lanuza has been imagining and writing love stories since she was a kid. She works for the music industry by day, and writes about meet cutes and snappy comebacks by night. She writes short stories, chick lit and young-adult fiction. She has a degree in Development Communication from the University of the Philippines.


  1. I love the book cover so much! Is this a Filipino writer? I am so proud! I hope to read this next. <3 Awesome review, Dianne. I love the STYLE section of your review. I like books that let me crave for more!

    YANI @

    1. Yes! Dawn is a Filipino author. I hope you get to read this one soon, Yani! Thank you for dropping by too!


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