Review: Scandalized by Tara Frejas
Fi Legaspi is living the dream working in Seoul as a road manager for one of South Korea’s hottest bands, East Genesis Project. Until she isn’t.
When she finds herself in the middle of a scandal and a hostile fangirl witch hunt, Fi seeks the comfort of home, and to her surprise, not the person she had been pining for for years. All too suddenly it’s no longer her career on the line, but also her heart. Will she walk away from everything that matters to her or fight to keep her dream alive?
I am not a K-Pop person. I tried, a few years ago, but I just couldn’t get into it. It was, essentially the same with all things Korean for me. I watch K-dramas when I get into it, sometimes watch the movies, but I’m not into it as my other friends were. (I suppose that if/when I get to South Korea, this will all change, like how I sort of got into a lot of Japanese stuff after I visited Japan. But that’s for another thing.) So even if I did join Tara’s 소리질러 (Make Some Noise!) Week for Scandalized, I still wasn’t sure if I would be able to immerse in it. Granted, there was a band, and I love bands in fiction, but the entire K-Pop thing intimidated me in a way.
But really, I shouldn’t have worried because reading Scandalized was a breeze. I loved Tara’s other books, so I sort of knew what to expect with her writing, and her newest one didn’t disappoint in that area. I loved how real everything felt on the first few pages, and even if I wasn’t into the culture, I could clearly imagine Fi and East Genesis Project, and the Amethyst office and Gabriel like they were fully formed characters who decided to settle in my head. There was a certain kind of sincerity in the pages of this book that would capture even a non-K-Pop fan like me.
I loved, loved, loved Fi. Her spirit, her loyalty, and how she handled everything in the novel. And I equally loved Gabriel, too, because he seemed more accessible than the other guy, and because of the peg (Hi, Daniel Henney *swoon*). It was a pleasure reading their scenes together in Manila, and Tara captured the usual touristy stuff that people do when they visit. It took me a while before I got to familiarize myself with the names of the two band members other than Yihwan, but after I got that, I fell in love with Song Minchan. *pinches cheeks* 😛 I think I must also note that the East Genesis Project website is gold – not just literally! Talk about providing a fuller experience for the readers. 🙂
Overall, I had a great time reading Scandalized, despite my non-relation to the K-Pop fandom. There were many nuggets of wisdom in the book that could apply in real life, and the book left me with a lot of good vibes when I was done reading. And since this is a series, I think we can look forward to reading more of Fi, Gabe, and the band – yay! I think this can count as my dose of K-Pop? 🙂
You carry a truth in you. Feel free to burden everyone with it.
True story: soon after I finished reading the book, this happened:
About the author:
Tara Frejas is a cloud-walker who needs caffeine to fuel her travels. When she’s not on work mode, she keeps herself busy by weaving her daydreams into stories.
Aside from her obvious love affair with words and persistent muses, Tara is very passionate about being caffeinated, musical theatre, certain genres of music, dancing, dogs, good food, and romancing Norae, her ukelele. She owns a male bunny named Max who sometimes tries to nibble on her writing notes. Scandalized is her second novel after Paper Planes Back Home.
Fun fact: She’s a Piscean. Go figure.