Thank you to Penguin and Libro.fm for providing me an audio copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
High school senior Frank Li is a Limbo–his term for Korean-American kids who find themselves caught between their parents’ traditional expectations and their own Southern California upbringing. His parents have one rule when it comes to romance–“Date Korean”–which proves complicated when Frank falls for Brit Means, who is smart, beautiful–and white. Fellow Limbo Joy Song is in a similar predicament, and so they make a pact: they’ll pretend to date each other in order to gain their freedom. Frank thinks it’s the perfect plan, but in the end, Frank and Joy’s fake-dating maneuver leaves him wondering if he ever really understood love–or himself–at all.(Goodreads)
I don’t read a ton of YA contemporary. As I am an adult, they tend to be on the immature side for me. While I did feel this way with this book, let me reiterate that I am an adult, this certainly captures what it is like to be an 18-year-old on the cusp of leaving for college.
I liked the last half of this book much more than the first. While I understand why the first part of the book was needed, I did not enjoy it. I wish the author had chosen a different trope than the fake relationship.
But in the end, this book isn’t really about romance, but more about fitting in when you are caught between two worlds, trying to understand your parents, and making your own path. Those are the things I loved about this book. Frank is a great character, relatable and extremely funny. I loved his friends, especially Q, and enjoyed getting a glimpse into his world. I also like that Frank called a spade and spade and was able to look at the world around him in a very well adjusted and mostly unbiased way.
I certainly recommend this book, and I listened to the audiobook and can attest that the narration was great.
Overall Rating: 4