Happy Friday, friends! I am thrilled today to present you my contribution to the lovely blog tour, organized by Tin @ The Book Maiden. Spoiler alert: it’s about a lovely contemporary book with all the food and cuteness.
More seriously though, and as always, there are no spoilers in this review.
The Way You Make Me Feel packed adorableness, food, fun friendships and amazing father-daughter relationships all at once. This was my first Maurene Goo book and I can safely say that it won’t be my last. I read it with a smile on my face the whole time and that is exactly what I was expecting when I picked up this book. Expectations, met.
A BEAUTIFUL STORY WITH FOCUS ON PARENTS-CHILDREN RELATIONSHIPS
In this story, we meet Clara, a Korean-American teenager living alone with her dad. Clown of her high-school, queen of the most awful pranks, Clara was a main character that was, at first, a bit complicated to root for. She was certainly not perfect and, at times, her way of thinking or acting were lost on me, but that didn’t last too long. Once we got to scratch under the surface and got to know her a bit better, as the story went on, I discovered a passionate, but lost, a genuinely sweet, funny and witty character I ended up loving.
You will probably get it right from the synopsis, this book really is character-driven and everything I expected in a contemporary like this, yet what made me feel the most, about this book, were the relationships in it.
Let’s start with the one that won my heart, right from the start: Clara’s relationship with her parents, most especially her dad. She lives with him and her parents are separated, and damn, that relationship just made me really, really happy. The way they trusted each other, the way they interacted, everything else just somehow reminded me of Lorelai and Rory’s relationship in Gilmore Girls and that made me way too happy, I live for these kind of relationships in books, especially in YA! BOOKS! WITH! AMAZING! PARENT! RELATIONSHIP!
We also got to meet Clara’s mother a little bit and how conflicted their relationship was, but how, somehow, through it all, Clara’s mother is trying her best to be a mom even when she was not meant to be, or doesn’t quite know how to. I found that relationship interesting to follow as well, but let’s be honest, father/daughter relationship in this was my favorite thing about the entire book.
FRIENDSHIPS & ROMANCE : GOALS
The Way You Make Me Feel also focuses on some other wonderful relationships, both friendships and actual romantic relationships. I really enjoyed the emphasis we got on friendship, how the friendship grew, changed, how endearing and adorable it was. Then there’s the love interest, Hamlet, such an adorable little bean. I loved how positive he was and the breath of fresh air and laughter he brought into Clara’s life. He and Clara were so different, yet they made sense somehow and I was rooting for them from the start…. not hard to do though, I mean, you should MEET HAMLET. He’s way too adorable.
A GREAT AND DIVERSE CAST OF CHARACTERS
Maurene Goo gave a particular attention to her characters and we got to meet an amazing and diverse cast in this book: Clara is Korean-American, both her parents are Korean-Brazilians and you can get a glimpse of THE! FOOD! YUM! With Clara’s dad and his food truck and that was really amazing. Hamlet is Chinese, Rose is black (and anxiety rep. Yes). We got to see amazing diversity in this book and I loved the attention brought to it.
I also love the feeling of wanderlust I got, traveling with them in the streets of L.A, the hometown in that story, as well as in the small villages of Mexico.
Overall, The Way You Make Me Feel was certainly a feel-good contemporary, a much-needed and overall quick read if you’re looking for something sweet, fun and with great friendships and parents-relationships for the summer. It’s about finding your people, it’s a love-letter to Los Angeles and it’s a really beautiful book. I’d totally recommend it.
Final rating: 4 drops!
A million thanks to Tin @ The Book Maiden for organizing the blog tour and Macmillan for providing review copies. This did not, in any way, influence my thoughts and rating.
Maurene Goo, The Way You Make Me Feel, Published by Farrar, Strass & Giroux, May, 8th, 2018.
From the author of I Believe in a Thing Called Love, a laugh-out-loud story of love, new friendships, and one unique food truck.
Clara Shin lives for pranks and disruption. When she takes one joke too far, her dad sentences her to a summer working on his food truck, the KoBra, alongside her uptight classmate Rose Carver. Not the carefree summer Clara had imagined. But maybe Rose isn’t so bad. Maybe the boy named Hamlet (yes, Hamlet) crushing on her is pretty cute. Maybe Clara actually feels invested in her dad’s business. What if taking this summer seriously means that Clara has to leave her old self behind?
With Maurene Goo’s signature warmth and humor, The Way You Make Me Feel is a relatable story of falling in love and finding yourself in the places you’d never thought to look.
More about the author:
Maurene Goo grew up in a Los Angeles suburb surrounded by floral wallpaper and piles of books. She studied communication at UC San Diego and then later received a Masters in publishing, writing, and literature at Emerson College. Before publishing her first book, Since You Asked, she worked in both textbook and art book publishing. She also has very strong feelings about tacos and houseplants and lives in Los Angeles.
🎁 The INTERNATIONAL Giveaway! 🎁
Enter to win a hardbound copy of The Way You Make Me Feel (ends May, 4th!)
Do you want to read The Way You Make Me Feel? Did you read Maurene Goo’s other books?
Do you like books with amazing parents-children relationships? And great friendships? Any recommendations? Let me know in comments!