Featured Review: Made in Korea (Sarah Suk)

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About This Book:

Frankly in Love meets Shark Tank in this feel-good romantic comedy about two entrepreneurial Korean American teens who butt heads—and maybe fall in love—while running competing Korean beauty businesses at their high school.

There’s nothing Valerie Kwon loves more than making a good sale. Together with her cousin Charlie, they run V&C K-BEAUTY, their school’s most successful student-run enterprise. With each sale, Valerie gets closer to taking her beloved and adventurous halmeoni to her dream city, Paris.

Enter the new kid in class, Wes Jung, who is determined to pursue music after graduation despite his parents’ major disapproval. When his classmates clamor to buy the K-pop branded beauty products his mom gave him to “make new friends,” he sees an opportunity—one that may be the key to help him pay for the music school tuition he knows his parents won’t cover…

What he doesn’t realize, though, is that he is now V&C K-BEAUTY’s biggest competitor.

Stakes are high as Valerie and Wes try to outsell each other, make the most money, and take the throne for the best business in school—all while trying to resist the undeniable spark that’s crackling between them. From hiring spies to all-or-nothing bets, the competition is much more than either of them bargained for.

But one thing is clear: only one Korean business can come out on top.

 

 

*Review Contributed by Olivia Farr, Staff Reviewer*

MADE IN KOREA is a sweet romantic-comedy about competition, family, and reaching for your dreams. Valerie runs a very successful business at her high school along with her cousin, which they named V&C K-BEAUTY. They sell Korean beauty products that are sent by her cousin's father out of a locker at their high school. Their school has entrepreneurial awards, encouraging students to begin their own businesses, and V&C K-BEAUTY is one of the only businesses to be run over several school years.

In her senior year, Valerie has big goals for the sales. She wants to take her halmeoni on a once-in-a-lifetime trip to Paris. Her halmeoni has always dreamed of traveling, and in this gift, Valerie will not only be doing something for her halmeoni, but also proving to her parents that she is good at business and worth their admiration.

Everything seems to be going well until the new (and handsome) guy in school, Wes, begins selling his own beauty product line. Wes dreams of being a musician, a career his parents absolutely do not want him to follow. His mother gave him some beauty products from a K-pop line that is really popular to share with kids at school. When he inadvertently sells them, he learns the market is there and decides to keep selling them to raise money for his application and admission to a musical college.

As their business rivalry escalates, it becomes more personal - and soon, feelings are growing in addition to their competition.

What I loved: This was a really enjoyable and cute read. The competition kept the pace going quickly, and I appreciated the dual perspectives. Both Valerie and Wes were really compelling characters, and the motives behind their businesses and desires to have their parents accept and appreciate them will resonate with readers. There are many cute and sweet moments mixed with some humor, and I loved the way they got to know each other plus pushed each other's buttons throughout.

There are some great themes about family and its complexity. I adored Valerie's halmeoni, and the way her relationships with her parents and sister evolve. Valerie has always felt like a disappointment, and she wants to prove to her parents and herself that she has what it takes in business. Her relationship with them has colored other relationships in her life, and she begins to understand these complications as she grows during the story. Similarly, Wes dreams of being a professional musician, but his uncle has pursued this career and struggled because of it. As he tries to find a way to tell his parents and prove he can do it on his own, he must learn more about himself and his decisions along the way.

Communication is another major theme of the book, and the lessons about the need to talk about concerns and feelings are really well done. Beyond the two main characters, there are many others who have needed to talk about things. Even if things don't end in the way they wished, there was still value in speaking their truths.

Final verdict: Charming and sweet with compelling characters and a delightful premise, MADE IN KOREA is a gratifying YA contemporary read about following your passions, competition, and family. Highly recommend for fans of TWEET CUTE, A PHO LOVE STORY, and DATING MAKES PERFECT.

 

 

*Find More Info & Buy This Book HERE!*

 
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Comments 1

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Bianca Walter on Tuesday, 18 May 2021 23:34

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0
REAL POWERFUL AND EFFECTIVE LOVE SPELL CASTER ONLINE . I just want to share my experience with the entire world on how I got my husband back and saved my marriage… I was married for 5 years with 2 kids and I have been living happily with my family until things started getting ugly with me and my husband that leads us to fights and arguments almost every time… it got worse at a point that my husband filed for divorce… I tried my best to make him change his mind & stay with me cause I loved him with all my heart and didn't want to lose my husband but everything just didn't work out… He moved out of the house and still went ahead to file for divorce… I pleaded and tried everything but still nothing worked. The breakthrough came when someone introduced me to this wonderful, great spell caster called Dr Jumba, Who eventually helped me out… I have never been a fan of things like this but just decided to try it because I was desperate and left with no choice… He did the spell for me and things really worked out as he promised and my husband had a change of mind and came back home to stay with me and the kids. And promise never to hurt me again. We are living happily as it was with the help of Dr Jumba. If you are in need of help you can contact Dr Jumba via email wiccalovespelltools@gmail.com. You can also contact him through whatsapp +1 908 517 4108 . website : https://drjumbaspellhome.wordpress.com

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