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YA Review: Frankly in Love by David Yoon

Title: Frankly In Love

Author: David Yoon

Year Published: 2019

Category: YA fiction (romance)
Pages: 432
Rating: 5 out of 5

Location (my 2021 Google Reading map)USA (CA)

Summary (from Amazon): Frank Li has two names. There's Frank Li, his American name. Then there's Sung-Min Li, his Korean name. No one uses his Korean name, not even his parents. Frank barely speaks any Korean. He was born and raised in Southern California.

Even so, his parents still expect him to end up with a nice Korean girl--which is a problem, since Frank is finally dating the girl of his dreams: Brit Means. Brit, who is funny and nerdy just like him. Brit, who makes him laugh like no one else. Brit . . . who is white.

As Frank falls in love for the very first time, he's forced to confront the fact that while his parents sacrificed everything to raise him in the land of opportunity, their traditional expectations don't leave a lot of room for him to be a regular American teen. Desperate to be with Brit without his parents finding out, Frank turns to family friend Joy Song, who is in a similar bind. Together, they come up with a plan to help each other and keep their parents off their backs. Frank thinks he's found the solution to all his problems, but when life throws him a curveball, he's left wondering whether he ever really knew anything about love—or himself—at all.

Review: I have been meaning to read this book for years, ever since my librarian friend, Sherri, suggested it to me. I am so glad that I finally got around to it and the Labor Day weekend here in the US was a good time to do it.

This is a wonderful book about friendship, growing up, family, heritage, culture, racism, and acceptance. Frank's family is close, but drive each other crazy. They love each other, but don't say it. The parents have certain expectations for their children and let them get in the way of being together. Frank's friends are die-hard; they support one another through thick and thin, but keep secrets. And Frank's senior year of high school is a tumultuous one so hang on for the ride.

I loved all the characters in this book; they are quirky, lovely, smart, and just good people despite their issues. Yoon has captured culture clash and generational clash well and I was all in for the ride.

Challenges for which this counts: 
  • Alphabet (Author)--Y
  • Big Book--432 pages
  • Diversity-Korean American characters and author

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