Book Review: Let's Talk About Love by Claire Kann

Let’s Talk About Love by Claire Kann

Posted September 13, 2021 by Amber in Reviews / 1 Comment

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Let's Talk About Love

Let's Talk About Love

by Claire Kann

Publisher: Swoon Reads on January 23, 2018
Genre: Contemporary, LGBTQIAP+, Romance
Target Age Group: Adult, New Adult
Representation: Asexual Character(s), BIPOC Character(s), Black Character(s), LGBTQIAP+ Character(s)
Content Warnings: Acephobia, Infidelity, Panic Attacks, Racism, Sexual Assault, Sexual Harrassment

Rating: ★★★★★

Check out this book on Goodreads or buy the book at Bookshop.org

Alice had her whole summer planned. Non-stop all-you-can-eat buffets while marathoning her favorite TV shows (best friends totally included) with the smallest dash of adulting--working at the library to pay her share of the rent. The only thing missing from her perfect plan? Her girlfriend (who ended things when Alice confessed she's asexual). Alice is done with dating--no thank you, do not pass go, stick a fork in her, done.

But then Alice meets Takumi and she can’t stop thinking about him or the rom com-grade romance feels she did not ask for (uncertainty, butterflies, and swoons, oh my!).

When her blissful summer takes an unexpected turn, and Takumi becomes her knight with a shiny library employee badge (close enough), Alice has to decide if she’s willing to risk their friendship for a love that might not be reciprocated—or understood.

 

I absolutely loved this book.

That’s an understatement.

For three days, I lived and breathed Let’s Talk About Love.

Do y’all remember Tess of the Road?  Remember how much I love Tess of the Road?  Remember how often I try to plug it because I love the book so much?  It has a new friend.  I usually write my reviews the evening after I finish a book but I’m sitting here a whole day later and blubbering about how much I loved it.  I’m going to try and focus in now and do my best to tell you why.

For most people, Let’s Talk About Love probably won’t be a big deal.  It’s a good book with a cute relationship and a frustrating but accurate-feeling friendship and family struggle.  Here’s why Let’s Talk About Love is meaningful for me.  Listening to Alice’s fears, hopes, doubts, difficulties, and internal monologue was like being in my own head.  I believe there are quite a few lines of dialogue in the book that I have said in the same situation about myself.  Alice feels trapped by her parents’ expectations.  She loves her friends with all of her being but feels like a third wheel and that they’re drifting away.  She’s biromantic asexual Black girl in a world that really doesn’t understand her… and doesn’t want to.

Sometimes you read a book and it feels like the author took the words right out of your heart.  I have had this experience twice.  Tess of the Road and Let’s Talk About Love.  I’m trying to be objective but it’s really, really challenging.

Kann’s writing does a good job of bringing the reader into the story and tying them emotionally to Alice’s hopes and fears and insecurities.  Alice is a well-rounded character – she has a past that haunts her and a future that eludes her.  I like the way her development worked, where she’d start to grow and be stalled by an obstacle or pulled back down by her own insecurities – I related to that a lot, but I also think a lot of people do.  The road to growth is not often easy.  I also really, really enjoyed that she was a biromantic asexual.  I was unable to find whether or not Kann identifies this way as well, but regardless of the author’s personal identity, I felt the representation was spot on.

There were aspects of the world building I really enjoyed as well.  The focus on finance.  The fact a character actually got sick and it felt real.  It’s funny – Takumi behaved precisely the way my husband does when he has a bad cold or a spot of flu.  The world is literally ending and basic things like staying in bed and taking medicine needs stern prompting.  Again, another small slice life that felt written right out of my own story.  Let’s Talk About Love is a romance, but it’s more than just a romance.  It’s a story about a friendship.  A story about accepting love from various venues.  A story about king vulnerable.  A story about crafting your life path.

Let’s Talk About Love is the perfect romance.  It’s not all flirting, kissing, touching, sex.  It’s a balanced relationship filled with honestly, emotional development alongside physical (or not) attraction.  I really, really liked it. A lot.

Ratings Breakdown

Setting: ★★★★★
Plot: ★★★★★
Characters: ★★★★★
Writing: ★★★★★
Pacing: ★★★★★
Narrator: ★★★★★
Personal Enjoyment: ★★★★★

5 Star Rating

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What was the last romance you read that grabbed you by the heart and squeezed?  Do you tend to be a fan of romance or abrasive against it? Tell more in the comments!

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