I loved this. And, since there’s so much going on in it that I can’t possibly explain any better than the official blurb does, read this:
Grace Wilde is running—from the multi-million dollar mansion her record producer father bought, the famous older brother who’s topped the country music charts five years in a row, and the mother who blames her for her brother’s breakdown. Grace escapes to the farthest place from home she can think of, a boarding school in Korea, hoping for a fresh start.
She wants nothing to do with music, but when her roommate Sophie’s twin brother Jason turns out to be the newest Korean pop music superstar, Grace is thrust back into the world of fame. She can’t stand Jason, whose celebrity status is only outmatched by his oversized ego, but they form a tenuous alliance for the sake of her friendship with Sophie. As the months go by and Grace adjusts to her new life in Korea, even she can’t deny the sparks flying between her and the KPOP idol.
Soon, Grace realizes that her feelings for Jason threaten her promise to herself that she’ll leave behind the music industry that destroyed her family. But can Grace ignore her attraction to Jason and her undeniable pull of the music she was born to write? Sweet, fun, and romantic, this young adult novel explores what it means to experience first love and discover who you really are in the process.
So, I would imagine that I’m not the only one who didn’t know anything about K-Pop before reading this, but after some googling (oh my goodness, fandom insanity) I got a pretty good feel for the K-Pop culture. It made for a fun setting for Hello, I Love You because it’s not just set in Korea but also sort of within this subculture that I found fascinating. As a character, Grace is flawed and very human, and as a result of recent tragedies doesn’t start out this book as a very likable person. By the end, though, Grace’s transformation is realistic and hopeful. I loved Jason and Grace together and rooted for them the whole way through.
In a word, I thought is was wonderful. Check it out here on Amazon or get it from your favorite book store!