Frankly in Love is a novel about a young Korean-American man who finds himself disowned by his immigrant mother and new-immigrant father due to an ill-advised relationship with an African-American woman. He keeps getting forced to confront his identity as a Korean man who’s decidedly American in his values and desires while also being left out of their lives under the guise of cultural expectations.”
In this beautiful collection of short stories, David Yoon takes us deep into the lives of people who are outsiders in one way or another. Some are new immigrants to the United States; some are children of immigrants; some have no idea who their real parents are; some live in a remote mountain town in South Korea, and others grew up as rich kids in Beverly Hills. These characters are all trying to find a place in the world, with their personal stories becoming part of a larger cultural story about America and its meaning for the rest of the world.
Everyone calls him Frank. His parents are from Korea, but he was born and raised in Southern California. On paper, Frank seems like a typical American teenager with a passion for basketball and girls. Yet there’s more than meets the eye: his love for basketball is a cover for his secret double life as a female soccer star who plays on her brother’s team. She’s so good that she might even make it to college someday. But when Sung-Min competes against an elite Korean soccer team on a summer trip to Seoul, she discovers the path forward isn’t as easy as she believed it would be.
About Frankly in Love Book
Frank Li has two names. There’s Frank Li, his American name. Then there’s Sung-Min Li, his Korean name. No one uses his Korean name, not even his parents. Frank barely speaks any Korean. He was born and raised in Southern California.
Even so, his parents still expect him to end up with a nice Korean girl–which is a problem since Frank is finally dating the girl of his dreams: Brit Means. Brit, who is funny and nerdy, just like him. Brit, who makes him laugh like no one else. Brit . . . who is white.
As Frank falls in love for the first time, he’s forced to confront the fact that while his parents sacrificed everything to raise him in the land of opportunity, their traditional expectations don’t leave much room for him to be a regular American teen. Desperate to be with Brit without his parents finding out, Frank turns to family friend Joy Song, who is in a similar bind. They devise a plan to help each other and keep their parents off their backs. Frank thinks he’s found the solution to all his problems, but when life throws him a curveball, he’s left wondering whether he ever knew anything about love or himself.