Book Review: I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo

I Believe in a Thing Called Love

Author: Maurene Goo
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
Published: May 30, 2017
Hardcover, 336 pages
Rating: 5 stars
Amazon  Goodreads

Summary: Desi Lee believes anything is possible if you have a plan. That’s how she became student body president. Varsity soccer star. And it’s how she’ll get into Stanford. But—she’s never had a boyfriend. In fact, she’s a disaster in romance, a clumsy, stammering humiliation magnet whose botched attempts at flirting have become legendary with her friends. So when the hottest human specimen to have ever lived walks into her life one day, Desi decides to tackle her flirting failures with the same zest she’s applied to everything else in her life. She finds guidance in the Korean dramas her father has been obsessively watching for years—where the hapless heroine always seems to end up in the arms of her true love by episode ten. It’s a simple formula, and Desi is a quick study. Armed with her “K Drama Steps to True Love,” Desi goes after the moody, elusive artist Luca Drakos—and boat rescues, love triangles, and staged car crashes ensue. But when the fun and games turn to true feels, Desi finds out that real love is about way more than just drama.

Review: “All’s fair in love and Korean dramas”

GAH, this book is so cute. Have you ever wanted to read a book that’s basically a K-Drama in book format? Wish granted! There’s even a handy guide at the back of the book to suggest the K-Drama for you based on your preferences for romance romance or romantic comedy, historical or contemporary, fantasy, high-school, K-pop, gender bending…

Desi is great. She’s this super over-achiever who is good at everything except talking to boys, so she comes up with a study plan and basically goes to K-Drama cram school for a weekend to come up with “The K Drama Steps to True Love.” I love how amazing and yet vulnerable Desi is. I also am totally in love with Luca, who at first is basically Aloof Art-Boy but then throughout the book so many shadings of personality are revealed to make him into a genuine person. And do not get me started on Desi’s Appa. If you’ve ever watched a K-Drama, you will be able to practically hear his dialogue as you read it, what with calling himself Appa and yelling “Ya” at Desi all the time.

Desi and Luca’s relationship is adorable, and manages to follow Desi’s K Drama Steps to True Love even when she’s NOT trying to manipulate things. Their late night conversation where Luca says he’s as awake as coffee? ADORABLE. Melt. I remember talking on the phone with my husband many moons ago until one or both of us would fall asleep, still on the line. And then there’s the story of Desi’s parents, which basically sounds like a Korean Drama on its own. (Hear that, Ms. Maurene Goo? I think you’ve got a prequel to write…)

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