Saturday 6 April 2024

Book Review: Idol Gossip by Alexandra Leigh Young (YA Contemporary)

Idol Gossip
Alexandra Leigh Young
Walker Books
28 May 2024 (2021)
eBook - PDF
YA Contemporary
ARC via Edelweiss

Delicious gossip squares off with genuine heart in this inside look at a K-pop academy.

Every Friday after school, seventeen-year-old Alice Choy and her little sister, Olivia, head to Myeongdong to sing karaoke. Back in San Francisco, when she still had friends and earthly possessions, Alice took regular singing lessons. But since their diplomat mom moved them to Seoul, her only musical outlet is vamping it up in a private karaoke booth to an audience of one: her loyal sister. Then a scout for Top10 Entertainment, one of the biggest K-pop companies, hears her and offers her a spot at their Star Academy. Can Alice navigate the culture clashes, egos, and extreme training practices of K-pop to lead her group onstage before a stadium of 50,000 chanting fans—and just maybe strike K-pop gold? Not if a certain influential blogger and the anti-fans get their way . . .

This debut novel is about standing out and fitting in, dreaming big and staying true. It will speak to fans of K-pop and to anyone who is trying to take their talents to the next level.


Idol Gossip started well. I was interested in Alice and her quest to become a singer, but around the middle of the book my attention started to drift. The action began to feel too rushed and the emotions experienced by the characters became only surface deep. This was a shame, as there were a lot of good themes here, but their exploration and conclusions only ever felt superficial. If you are looking for a quick and easy read about K-pop and stardom, this book will tick all the boxes, but I felt it could have been more if the author had taken more time and dug deeper emotionally. So much was simply glossed over. As such, I am giving it three stars. It wasn't bad, but it could have been better.

I received this book as a free eBook ARC via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. 

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