Axie Oh is an auto-buy author for me. And after XOXO that place in my heart is only further cemented. I’m used to SF rebels and robots, but XOXO is precious beyond words! It is one of my most anticipated reads this year so keep reading this book review to see what I thought!
Cello prodigy Jenny has one goal: to get into a prestigious music conservatory. When she meets mysterious, handsome Jaewoo in her uncle’s Los Angeles karaoke bar, it’s clear he’s the kind of boy who would uproot her careful plans. But in a moment of spontaneity, she allows him to pull her out of her comfort zone for one unforgettable night of adventure…before he disappears without a word.
Three months later, when Jenny and her mother arrive in South Korea to take care of her ailing grandmother, she’s shocked to discover that Jaewoo is a student at the same elite arts academy where she’s enrolled for the semester. And he’s not just any student. He’s a member of one of the biggest K-pop bands in the world—and he’s strictly forbidden from dating.
When a relationship means throwing Jenny’s life off the path she’s spent years mapping out, she’ll have to decide once and for all just how much she’s willing to risk for love.
(Disclaimer: I received this book from Edelweiss. This has not impacted my review which is unbiased and honest.)
XOXO is a book that made me smile and laugh. Sometimes you just need a book that sweeps you away with cheerful banter, heartwarming twists, and secrecy. XOXO feels like something I could have watched as a K-Drama! So right away, if that is something you enjoy, you’ll have to pick up XOXO. I barely have that many notes because I was just so thoroughly enjoying myself in the story and all the developments. Jenny was a character I could deeply identify with in her striving for the future, without living life for today.
The ways we can get so wrapped up in the precision, that we forget the heart and the soul. XOXO is full of action, but it also touches upon wondering if love is worth our future. Whether they have to be mutually exclusive. Can attraction and love beat the subterfuge and secrecy? How much of our lives do we put on hold, or change, for others? Even the ones we love. While I truly adored the side characters, I just wish we had gotten a little bit more resolution on their stories at the end.
Ultimately, XOXO came for me at the perfect moment. It felt like a warm hug and a TV show I blew through in an evening. There are great themes of friendship, family, and love all wrapped up in one. And can I also say that I would read so many stories about the side characters?? I would love that so much – AXIE PLEASE!
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