If You Loved ‘To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before,’ These Are Must Reads!
By Alexandria Ang (@TheBooksBuzz)
I remember the first time I read To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han. I was immediately drawn to the possibility of finding someone like Peter Kavinsky. I also related so much to Lara Jean’s life and her fear of putting herself out there. I soon craved more adorable romantic comedies with an Asian-American lead. Recently with the release of the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before on Netflix, the demand for more romantic comedies has only become greater. If you’re like me and you’re still not over the Netflix adaptation, here are some Young Adult rom-com recs that will satisfy your yearning.
You’ll have no trouble swooning over this romantic story of Dimple Shah and Rishi Patel, who are arranged by their parents to be together. Rishi is aware of this arrangement while Dimple has no clue and their worlds college when they meet at a web-development summer program. This book has everything — a swoon-worthy romance, own voices representation, duo-POV and main characters who crush stereotypes and learn to pursue their passions. I could reread this book over and over again because it is just filled to the brim with laugh-out-loud writing and diversity. Dimple is such a strong female protagonist who knows what she wants in life anda Rishi, well, let’s just say he’s the sweetest and most caring love interest you’ll ever encounter in a Young Adult novel.
Nothing says romantic comedy like a good ole K-drama. When you add K-dramas plus books, you get I Believe In A Thing Called Love By Maurene Goo. Desi Lee uses the “K-drama steps to true love” to help her win over the guy she’s been crushing on. This book is basically a K-drama and plus there are even K-drama references sprinkled throughout the book that will look familiar to any K-drama enthusiast. Even if you have never seen a K-drama before, the book sets up a good introduction to what they are all about and will surely convince you to start watching them!
When Clara Shin goes too far with one of her pranks, she is sentenced to work a whole summer in her dad’s food truck, The KoBra. Worse, she has to work alongside her archenemy Rose Carver. However through working in the food truck, Clara comes to the conclusion that her summer might not suck at all, especially if that means she gets to see Hamlet every day. Maurene Goo’s second novel is a humorous and relatable story about finding love and happiness in the most unexpected places. Clara lives with a single father, while her mother is traveling the world for her social media influencing job on Instagram. Her family dynamic makes for some very interesting discussions, and I loved reading about Clara’s relationships with both her father and mother.
This Young Adult contemporary debut from author Nisha Sharma is sure to satisfy your rom-com cravings. The main character Winnie Mehta is a hopeless romantic and a film geek who dreams of going to film school. However, her plans are hindered by her ex-boyfriend Raj and Dev, a fellow film geek she’s crushing on. My So-Called Bollywood Life by Nisha Sharma is sassy, uplifting and really easy to read because of how lovable the characters are. Get ready to immerse yourself into Bollywood movies, eighties pop culture and romance novel references!
American Panda by Gloria Chao is relatable debut novel about a Taiwanese-American teen who struggles with living up to the expectations of her parents. Although seventeen-year-old Mei wants to make her parents happy and fulfill her predetermined future, she also longs to follow her own heart. This book does has its awkward moments, but it shows the reality of first love and meeting new people. More than just a romantic comedy, this book adds a note of seriousness with discussions about one’s cultural identity and the bumpy road we sometimes encounter when we want to please our parents but also carve our own paths. After I read this book, there was a warm and fuzzy feeling in me because I realized that a lot of Mei’s experiences were in line with my own.
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About the Author
Alexandria Ang is an 18-year-old booklover who is a full-time student by day, but a blogger, bookstagrammer and Youtuber when the sun goes down. She enjoys drinking large cups of coffee and curling up with a good book if it means she also gets to take a picture for the gram before she does anything else.
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