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.
Holy shit. Okay. I literally just finished this as I’m writing this, and when I say this book had me crying, I mean I was literally ugly sobbing in the break room at work during my lunch break and had to make myself stop reading to go look presentable to little kids.
For starters, look at that beautiful cover! It’s SO PRETTY.
This book highlights so many issues I know many of my first-generation friends have experienced: how to tie together their identities, how to find themselves, etc. There’s also the universal experience of first love and first crushes.
As a white girl, I can’t speak on my own experiences, but seeing as David Yoon IS a first-gen Korean-American, I feel like it’s an authentic story.
I would argue that Frank’s feelings towards Brit are just a crush that got a little out of hand, but that’s up for debate. So much of what I got out of this story came from his interactions with his family. That’s where the true meat and heart lie.
I don’t want to spoil anything, but man, fake dating to real dating might be my new favorite trope!
An absolute delight to read, I give Frankly in Love 5 out of 5 Cheese Barrels. Thank you so much to BookishFirst for providing a copy in exchange for review!07