Fun YA; More Enjoyable Than Expected

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readingrebecca Avatar


Even though I read and enjoy numerous YA books every year, I was not sure how interesting this plot would be since the mix-up/trading-places scenario seemed a little contrived. However, I was wrong. I found the emotions generally realistic and enough of the dialogue realistic for the two main characters. Most of all, the pressure, approval or disapproval and expectations of parents is something that a majority of people can understand. These characters are Korean but the emotions are universal. The alternating chapters of first-person narration between a female and a male character might help to make this book appealing to a wider audience.

I found Jessica to be a very likeable character while my feelings for Elijah sometimes fluctuated. I respected Jessica's hard work and determination to take advantage of a coveted summer intern opportunity, despite the fact that the internship is with the company which employs her father. Elijah, on the other hand, maintains that he is happy to be going to New York in order to get away from his powerful, domineering father who is the Chief Executive Officer of this well known tech corporation. However, at the same time Elijah seems to thoroughly enjoy the prestige and the fact that some adults do in fact "kiss [his] ass" when he is in the office in Korea. There is also a snarky tone of entitlement when he happens to mention that he rarely travels by mere commercial aviation. Something just seems totally fake when he says he knows he comes across as "a total privileged asshole and [doesn't] realize it."

Occasionally, the Mark Twain style mix up between these two characters with the same Korean name does not seem believable. For example, probably the limo driver for the CEO's son would be told it is a young male that is the expected passenger. But just as one must suspend some disbelief with fantasy novels, the same must occasionally happen with Rom-Coms. Unfortunately, the limo scenario early in the book was not the only time that I felt like I had to suspend belief. Jessica's family background just did not seem all that impoverished for her to worry that she could not afford to go to college.

Overall, it is a light-hearted teen Rom-Com that is a quick read and fun.