Title: I Believe In A Thing Called Love
Author: Maurene Goo
Category: Young Adult
Series info: Standalone book
Desi Lee believes anything is possible if you have a plan. That’s how she became student body president. Varsity soccer star. And it’s how she’ll get into Stanford. But—she’s never had a boyfriend. In fact, she’s a disaster in romance, a clumsy, stammering humiliation magnet whose botched attempts at flirting have become legendary with her friends. So when the hottest human specimen to have ever lived walks into her life one day, Desi decides to tackle her flirting failures with the same zest she’s applied to everything else in her life. She finds guidance in the Korean dramas her father has been obsessively watching for years—where the hapless heroine always seems to end up in the arms of her true love by episode ten. It’s a simple formula, and Desi is a quick study. Armed with her “K Drama Steps to True Love,” Desi goes after the moody, elusive artist Luca Drakos—and boat rescues, love triangles, and staged car crashes ensue. But when the fun and games turn to true feels, Desi finds out that real love is about way more than just drama.
I got onto a Kdrama kick about a year back and while the obsession levels have gone down in the past few months, I’m still fond of Kdramas.
So when I read the synopsis of this book, I was hooked in. After keeping it in my TBR for a while, I finally read it and I’m so glad I didn’t leave it idle in my TBR.
I love the concept! Desi Lee takes inspiration from the Kdramas that her dad loves to make a formula to love. And to be honest, it’s accurate! I’ve noticed all those deductions of hers in all the Kdramas I’ve seen.
She believes that by following the formula, she’ll win the heart of a new boy whom she’s heavily crushing on. Plans and schedules have always worked for her, so it should work even to get a boyfriend.. right?
All the Kdrama references gave me life. I’ve seen most of the Kdramas that are mentioned in the book so it made it all so much more relatable. The book is a YA version of romance Kdramas, in a sense. It has all the elements and is super cute.
I really liked Desi Lee. She’s endearing, adorable and relatable. She has worked hard to get to her current position in school and to achieve so much. She has everything—except a boyfriend.
While a little misguided at some points, because some parts of the steps to love were kinda out there because Kdramas are dramatic, she tried her best.
The relationship between her and her dad was adorable. I liked their relationship and their dynamics.
The book is majorly about Desi but we do see quite a bit of Luca, her crush. I liked Luca. He seemed to be the perfect counterpart for Desi and I could see them together right from the beginning.
Luca is a calm and collected person, which is exactly what I picture someone like Desi to be with. Desi is, while organized in all parts of her life, actually a mess. She’s awkward, clumsy and not suave at all. So Luca and Desi were perfect for each other.
what I did not like
Kdramas are dramatic. That’s how they are. The “steps to love” is actually ridiculous in real life. Desi did not think about skipping some questionable steps and just went for it. I didn’t like that she wasn’t rational sometimes, even though it made for good plot.
At some point, the author gives a spoiler about a really good Kdrama, Descendants of the Sun. I hated that because if I had read the book without seeing the Kdrama, I would have been pissed. So if you’re going into the book and you love Kdramas, please watch DotS first so you don’t get spoiled.
The book was like an adorable mess. It’s chill, entertaining and promises a good ending.
I recommend it to Kdrama lovers and if you like adorable YA books.