I have been focusing a lot on self-care recently and The Extremely Busy Woman’s Guide to Self-Care was sitting in my NetGalley downloads on my Kindle. Well, the other day Facebook suggested I join this private group that had a similar title, cause it was created by the author! So I decided to sit down and finish reading the book. Lots of good tips! I am glad I read it… and glad I joined the group. There is also a podcast!
I was nervous when I started reading because the ML seemed a bit of a douche at their first meeting, but it was really good and he is redeemable. Family dynamics of course played a big part in this story of an arranged “meeting” not marriage. Comes out in March, but I read it through NetGalley as an ARC. Be warned, you will want both Indian food and bread…lots and lots of fresh bread.
Did you know it is an actual thing in some Asian countries to rent a guy to pose as your boyfriend so parents get off your back? Women posts craigslist type ads or use a service. This book is based on that idea, but with an Uber-like company and taking place between California and Chicago. It was cute and more family drama with cultural twists (seems to be the theme to my reading choices lately).
I stayed up way too late reading this one and reading the anxiety attack scenes was very triggering, but this was a very good and realistic portrayal of what it can be like. It is over 400 pages, not a quick read. The author is a Bangladeshi American which is the same as the protagonist, so it is another #ownvoices. Lots of diversity, lots of cultural references, also lots of mentions of books, movies, music, and food. It reminded me of YA RomCom movies from the late 90s, but way more respectful and also a little bittersweet. Comes out May 2021, but I recommend you add it to your lists.
I think this is by far my favorite that I have read in the last couple of months. It reminded me of a Kdrama or Webcomic. I was so engrossed in the story that I immediately went to Twitter to follow the author so I could keep updated on when she would have new books. The story is about the relationship of one of the band members in the group XOXO, but I left wanting to know not only what happens next with the main couple, but also what happens with the other characters in the story. There is so much potential here that I also wanted to tag Netflix as I think this has potential to be the nextTo All the Boys I’ve Loved Before. It is that good!
I decided I needed to read something fluffy back when I was working on the dissertation and it was in limbo until I got feedback from my Supervising Professor, so I read the ARC for Every Reason We Shouldn’t by Sara Fujimura. It was enjoyable and I liked the diverse cast of characters. The author wrote the book with her children in mind because there was a lack of books when they were growing up that had mixed Asian-American characters. However, I didn’t really see any rivalry between the two main leads as described in the blurb for the book (I was expecting Cutting Edge). Instead it was a sweet story about how complicated families can be.
Here is another one from the #ownvoices category. It had the angst I was hoping for from the last YA novel I listed. It kinda reminded me of Ten Things I hate About You with a Thai Lakorn twist. The Tech Twins were not allowed to date in high school. As freshmen in college, and finally allowed to date, they announce to their mother that they need to get more experience before they settle down with the One. So their mother decides that the youngest Tech daughter, still in high school, will go on practice dates with the son of a family friend. —It really did remind me of a lakorn (Thai soap opera-ish drama). The dates are based on rom-coms, the couple are former best friends who hate each other, and there are lots of misunderstandings because no one says what they are really feeling/thinking.
Of course I have read more than this, but that will wait for another What I Read roundup post! If you like Asian dramas and YA as much as I do, then I think you will like the books listed above. To find out more, click on the links to be taken to their Amazon pages. Enjoy!