A K-pop star finds love and adventure with an aspiring photographer in this modern retelling of Roman Holiday.
Lucky, a Korean-American K-pop star suffering an existential crisis over her career, plays hooky one night after a big concert in Hong Kong, escaping her handlers and bodyguard in search of a hamburger. Woozy on anti-anxiety medication and sleeping pills, she loses her way only to be rescued by Jack, an attractive stranger and fellow Korean-American who at first has no idea who she is and is struggling through his own personal crisis over whether to study banking to please his parents or pursue the photography he's so passionate about. As Lucky and Jack adventure through Hong Kong, they begin to fall for one another, but their budding connection is threatened by the lies they've told one another: Lucky hides her real identity, pretending to be an ordinary girl who is on tour with her church choir, while Jack has secret plans to sell photographs of their day together to a tabloid to help launch his career. Narrated in short chapters that alternate between Jack's and Lucky's first-person perspectives, Goo (The Way You Make Me Feel, 2018, etc.) develops each character's voice with clarity. A quick-paced, entertaining plot, witty banter, and expert characterization make this a light and satisfying read, and a wealth of local details effortlessly immerse the reader in the worlds of Hong Kong and K-pop stardom.
Charming and swoonworthy. (Fiction. 14-18)
A quick-paced, entertaining plot, witty banter, and expert characterization make this a light and satisfying read, and a wealth of local details effortlessly immerse the reader in the worlds of Hong Kong and K-pop stardom. Charming and swoonworthy.” Kirkus Reviews
“Lucky and Jack are both charming, funny narrators with serious chemistry. . .They share comfortable banter, smoldering looks, a few intense kissesand in between, earnest existential conversations about pursuing their dreams and living meaningful lives. Readers, no matter their celebrity status, should relate.” The Horn Book
The Way You Make Me Feel:
"With massive amounts of humor, heart, and soul, this love letter to L.A. and its diversity is a celebration of friends, family, and food trucks." Booklist, starred review
"Sweet, sexy, hilarious, and featuring a spectacular father-daughter relationship, this book will fly off the shelves." School Library Journal, starred review
I Believe in a Thing Called Love:
“Desi's implementation of measures such as ‘Be Caught in an Obviously Lopsided Love Triangle’ yields hilarious, at times unintended results, lending this teen rom-com a surprisingly thoughtful conclusion . . . [Goo's] funny, engaging narrative also delivers powerful messages of inclusion and acceptance.” Kirkus Reviews, starred review
“The art-centric romance that develops between Desi and Luca is rewarding to follow, as are their parental relationships, particularly that between Desi and her widowed Appa. Goo simultaneously honors and deconstructs romantic tropes, both in general and specific to K dramas, and does so using a wonderfully diverse cast.” Publishers Weekly, starred review