Let's Talk About Love

Let's Talk About Love

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...

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Title:Let's Talk About Love
Author:Claire Kann
Rating:
Edition Language:English

Let's Talk About Love Reviews

  • kav (xreadingsolacex)

    I’m in need of a setting to give this novel 6 out of 5 stars because h o l y c r a p y’all, this novel changed my life.

    LET’S TALK ABOUT LOVE is a story about a biromantic asexual black woman, Alice, in college, living with her two best friends who are dating, and working at a library where she meets Takumi, who changed her life forever.

    I requested this ARC as a biroman

    I’m in need of a setting to give this novel 6 out of 5 stars because h o l y c r a p y’all, this novel changed my life.

    LET’S TALK ABOUT LOVE is a story about a biromantic asexual black woman, Alice, in college, living with her two best friends who are dating, and working at a library where she meets Takumi, who changed her life forever.

    I requested this ARC as a biromantic asexual reviewer because I have never seen those words in any form of media before. N e v e r. When I heard that not only was a book going to be published with a biroace main character, but the main is a queer woman of color, I was sold.

    And for good reason.

    Let’s start with the representation. LET’S TALK ABOUT LOVE gets representation right.

    Racial microaggressions are constantly addressed in this novel, primarily through Alice and as well as briefly through Takumi, who is Japanese. As a non-black person of color, I can’t speak firsthand on the representation, but I am aware that the author herself is black making that aspect ownvoices and as a person of color I can attest to some truth to it from my experience. Furthermore, this novel also discusses (though not in these exact words and briefly), how black people have to work twice as hard to get half as far as people with more privilege and that is so true and important to discuss.

    Then we can discuss how this novel also combats gross sexism. Whereas I do not want to go in-depth as to not spoil anyone, let’s just say there’s a party scene with a drunk male that completely brings to light a HUGE issue in our society.

    Finally, this novel gets the queer rep right. I heard that the original manuscript had some issues with the ace rep, but I can say with full confidence that this book had none of those issues with the ace rep and I would even go as far as arguing that it is the best representation I’ve seen. Now I can only speak from my own personal experiences, but Alice often discusses her fears as an alloromantic asexual when it comes to dating which I can relate to so much. There is a specific chapter towards the beginning of this novel where Alice talks in-depth about her struggles with asexuality, including the fears of being alloromantic and asexual as well as the possible reactions from people and the fact that it’s ridiculous that she needs to “come out” because the default believe is that she is heterosexual.

    Now I talk in-depth about the representation, but there is so much more to this novel.

    Can I just take a moment to note how unbelievably well the characters and relationships are developed?

    Though I would it’s arguable that their personalities may fall a slight bit into certain classic contemporary stereotypes, there is so much more to them. I loved how you could tell each character had their own character and they had their own individuality.

    The relationships are developed just as well, if not better. During an emotional encounter between Alice and her best friend, Feenie, I started crying. I started crying because of how realistic this relationship, and all others in this novel, were. And these characters also admit they have flaws. They know they’re not perfect and that is so important.

    I would say that the writing of this novel is a little basic, but I think that’s understandable as it’s a debut. I think the author was really trying to get into a teenager’s head and whereas she did succeed on that front, the writing had a little less “oomph” as a result.

    The journey Alice goes through during this novel is remarkable. The person she is at the end is not the same as the person she starts out as and her story is important. It highlights real aspects of so many other teens and young adults out there.

    I can’t even express to you all what it felt like to see the words “biromantic asexual” in an actual book. I don’t have the ability to express what representation like that for the first time ever means. So you’ll have to see it for yourself by reading the novel.

    Other notes:

    • this novel does confront problematic rhetoric as stated in the representation section, so be aware of that

    • this novel highlights the fact that it is okay to want to be a stay-at-home mom

    • um...read the book when it comes out in January

  • Romie

    It's 1:50am, I don't even know why I decided to write this review right now but here I am.

    I remember when I first heard about this book, it was somewhere around May 2017 and I just got extremely excited about it. Then people started getting ARCs and loving it — one of my friends fell in love with this story and because I trusted their judgment I preordered the book without knowing much about it.

    Alice is a 19-year-old biromantic asexual Black girl whom girlfriend just broke up with her because sh

    It's 1:50am, I don't even know why I decided to write this review right now but here I am.

    I remember when I first heard about this book, it was somewhere around May 2017 and I just got extremely excited about it. Then people started getting ARCs and loving it — one of my friends fell in love with this story and because I trusted their judgment I preordered the book without knowing much about it.

    Alice is a 19-year-old biromantic asexual Black girl whom girlfriend just broke up with her because she ‘doesn't like sex’ as her ex put it — I don't agree with these words, neither does Alice because like she explains it later in the book, it's not about her not liking sex, it's her not caring about it. Not one bit. She's obsessed with everything that is aesthetic and has a Cutie-Code™ for everything — ranking from green to red. Until Takumi arrives and scores black on her Cutie-Code™ scale. Unheard of.

    I cannot say that this book is perfect, it has a lot of YA tropes, but I honestly didn't mind because the tropes used in this book are some of my favourites, I live for them. The writing could have been a bit better but for a first book it's SOLID. I'm excited to see how Claire Kann's writing will evolve in the future!

    Now the story … I read this book in a one day, do you really think I didn't enjoy what I read? I couldn't put this book down, it was absolutely adorable and I could relate to Alice so much! The way she talks, or thinks, or acts ... it screamed me. And I absolutely adored soft boy™ Takumi.

    Alice is someone strong, although she was born into a wealthy family, she's making her own choices no matter the consequences because she's trying to do what's best for her. She has to deal with microaggressions every single day of her life without a break, in a white allocishet world, she's a queer woman of colour. She's strong and passionate, and I loved that she decided to see a counselor when she found herself needing to talk to someone. I found this choice extremely mature, it's something I deeply appreciated. It's nice to read about someone going to see a counselor because they need to talk, it's important to have a safe space — if you cannot find one, you can create one, that's what Alice did.

    I wasn't expecting to like Takumi as much as I did. The cuteness. The disrespect. What is life. Because we're seeing this story through Alice's eyes, I never really knew what he was thinking, but I liked his way of behaving: asking for consent, making sure Alice is happy or talking to her when he sees something is bothering her, keeping his distance when she doesn't want to talk, being overall kind ... soft boy™.

    I love, and I mean it, absolutely LOVE the way this book deals with being queer. It's not something I get to read about that often, and it's not something I get to see done well a lot. I cried a lot during the last few pages because of how Alice felt, it hit close to home. Alice wonders several times if it will always be like this: having to come out to everybody, getting the same questions, having to defend yourself over and over again, getting rejected for who you are which is something you have no control over ... it just hurt to read about that. It hurt because so many of us feel like they will automatically be rejected and never get a happy ending.

    This book took the time to deconstruct a lot of cliché and stereotypes concerning asexuality, to call out acephobia and that's something I'm grateful for because we do need more books like this one.

    Sorry if this review doesn't make a lot of sense, it's past 2am and I want to hug my bed.

  • Cait • A Page with a View

    Aaah this is amazing on so many levels. There is a TON of incredible rep, some truly wonderful characters, and the story is so relatable. Everything is just

    .

    Alice is a biromantic asexual college student whose girlfriend breaks up with her because she thinks Alice doesn't love her as much if she doesn't want to have sex. Alice wants a romantic relationship and works through a lot of common questions and struggles with her counselor. Then she meets a cute guy and has to decide if/how she'll

    Aaah this is amazing on so many levels. There is a TON of incredible rep, some truly wonderful characters, and the story is so relatable. Everything is just

    .

    Alice is a biromantic asexual college student whose girlfriend breaks up with her because she thinks Alice doesn't love her as much if she doesn't want to have sex. Alice wants a romantic relationship and works through a lot of common questions and struggles with her counselor. Then she meets a cute guy and has to decide if/how she'll tell him she's asexual and if that will change things.

    I think this is an awesome story everyone will love, but am even more excited for all of the readers who will be able to see themselves in this story! It's realistic, hopeful, funny, emotional, and just so well done.

  • Sana

    Finally a book about an asexual, biromantic black mc!!! Guys my heart is literally bursting from the cuteness, please read this!!! The friendships are so pure and lovely and Alice is such a realistic and relatable MC and you can't help but loving her. And Takumi? He's mine, sorry.

    I loved this book. Everything about it was so adorable, informing, sweet, realistic, relatable and made my insides mush.

    Alice's girlfriend broke up with her because Alice "doesn't like sex" and that's not true, Alice j

    Finally a book about an asexual, biromantic black mc!!! Guys my heart is literally bursting from the cuteness, please read this!!! The friendships are so pure and lovely and Alice is such a realistic and relatable MC and you can't help but loving her. And Takumi? He's mine, sorry.

    I loved this book. Everything about it was so adorable, informing, sweet, realistic, relatable and made my insides mush.

    Alice's girlfriend broke up with her because Alice "doesn't like sex" and that's not true, Alice just doesn't care about sex which she talks about throughout the book. I may not be asexual, but I understood Alice's struggles and related to her. She's the sweetest human being and I just want to wrap her in warm blankets. I love how and this book was informative without being preachy and I think a lot of teens figuring out their sexuality will be able to relate to this.

    The book is about Alice, a nineteen year old college student struggle with being asexual. She's comfortable with her sexuality and has told her closest friends, but is hesitant to tell others because she's unwilling to educate and explain it to others. The story follows Alice's coming out and understanding who she is. While the book deals with serious topics, there's always a light undertone keeping the story fluffy and light.

    SOME THINGS WE NEED TO TALK ABOUT:

    1. Alice's character!!!!

    Alice is an asshole.

    ALICE IS AN ASSHOLE.

    Alice is not a perfect and likeable character and throughout the book we can see how everything is centered around her. She thinks about herself whenever it comes to her friends, but she realizes she's an asshole and that's perfectly fine. When she had an argument with her friends she realized she wasn't being a good person and changed herself for the better. Plus she was rude to Takumi.

    2. AMAZING FRIENDSHIPS

    This book has one of the best and realistic friendhsips. How many of us hate that trope where girl meets boy and forgets she ever had friends and her life now totally revolves around this boy? This book has that trope, BUT CALLS ALICE OUT ON IT. When Alice starts spending more time with Takumi, her friend does get angry and yes they fight. It happens between the closest of friends especially when friends live with each other. It also shows how important communication is. If you want to know what the other person's thinking and why they're behaving the way they are, YOU GOTTA SPEAK!!!!

    3. GOOD ADULTS

    In most books adults or counselors are just portrayed as bad and making everything worse. (It may be in some cases, but not all.) But in this book, we have a counselor that Alice can talk to about how she's feeling and she trusts enough to share with. She feels better and finds the advice helpful and I was screaming because YES!!!!

    4. We also see how Alice is dealing with college life and career and I felt like this would be more New Adult??? A good NA that isn't all sex and romance, but with informative, sweet and diverse stories.

    5. TAKUMI

    Takumi is Japanese and also the one who broke Alice's Cutie Code (that's how she "rates?" people) and our love interest. He's such a sweet and soft boy, I love him.

    Overall, a cute and heartwarming book with YUMMY FOOD!!! Definitely recommended.

    buddy read with

    . 😊

  • C.G. Drews

    How absolutely ADORABLE this book is. Actually wait wait....

    is the better word. Because it's cute and fluffy and dorky and wholesome and my heart feels rather full right now. I shall sniffle happily in the corner.

    Like the GOOD kind of NA where you care about the characters and the plot lmao. But I'm guessing Alice was 19 (??) and life was all about how to adult and be in college and live on your own and

    How absolutely ADORABLE this book is. Actually wait wait....

    is the better word. Because it's cute and fluffy and dorky and wholesome and my heart feels rather full right now. I shall sniffle happily in the corner.

    Like the GOOD kind of NA where you care about the characters and the plot lmao. But I'm guessing Alice was 19 (??) and life was all about how to adult and be in college and live on your own and etc. etc. And all the secondary characters were at least in their early 20s. So I'm shelving it as NA. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ None can stop me. Someone bring NA back and make it good like this.

    First of all: Alice. She is amazing. She's actually so...real. Like she likes Pinterest, she says "squee", she is very much into tumblr and fandoms and she gets anxious and blurts things and she knows that food will cure all sorts of heartache. AND she's flawed. AND she's funny.

    FINALLY. There are not enough. (Pls rec me some if you have them!) Alice is also bisexual and has a girlfriend to start with. She loves romance, like really LOVES it. All the cliche romantic things, and snuggling and kissing. But she doesn't want sex. I think the book actually really explained a lot of aspects of asexualness really well! And Alice was still coming to terms with it. But it just...it was really nice to read (!!!) and also smashed those stereotypes that you have to have sex to want love. Those do NOT have to be connected!!

    (Although I confess I actually hoped the book was going to be less romancey but it is literally the most romancey book ever. That was the point of the story!! And I loved that it unpacked how Alice wanted love, but not sex. Buuuut I would really someday like to read about an ace character who also doesn't want romance. RECS WELCOME PLS.)

    I loved his and Alice's relationship. It's insta-attraction: but then the sloooowest slow burn that just makes YOUR HEART MELT.

    And I'm totally all heart eyes for FRIENDSHIP too. Alice's BFF are Feenie and Ryan (who are getting married) and they were both so complex and dynamic too. I

    how easily these three said "I love you" (platonically) and just how warm and cosy and epic their love/friendship was. This is the kind of friendship I craaave reading about. (Also reminded me of

    !!)

    It's like a Soft™ story where it's all focused on characters and emotions (AND FOOD). The pacing is perfect. <3 And it's actually not going to make you die of stress (WHICH IS NICE). I just loved the day-to-day life stuff as well.

    I mean they DIDN'T go grocery shopping, but. I would've read it happily.

    (Although holy heck; WHY IS EVERYONE ALWAYS SO RICH.)

    The only reason it isn't 5-stars is just because so. much. romance (haha so ironic cait you dear fish) and so just pls go read this and fall in love with the SQUISH.

  • Cece (ProblemsOfaBookNerd)

    My heart is overflowing

  • Lola

    Asexuality is real.

    It is not ‘‘weird’’ or ‘‘unnatural’’ or a ‘‘mental illness’’. If you have trouble wrapping your mind around this concept, that’s okay. This is why this story was written: to educate and to answer your questions without info-dumping you.

    And make you melt. Not only is this story relevant, fresh and informative, it also makes your insides feel warm and mushy.

    Because Alice is relatable. I may not identify as being asexual, but that didn’t keep me from understanding Alice, wanting

    Asexuality is real.

    It is not ‘‘weird’’ or ‘‘unnatural’’ or a ‘‘mental illness’’. If you have trouble wrapping your mind around this concept, that’s okay. This is why this story was written: to educate and to answer your questions without info-dumping you.

    And make you melt. Not only is this story relevant, fresh and informative, it also makes your insides feel warm and mushy.

    Because Alice is relatable. I may not identify as being asexual, but that didn’t keep me from understanding Alice, wanting to befriend her, and sending her positive thoughts whenever conflict emerged.

    Despite serious topics being discussed, this remains a feel-good novel. The reason why unhappy scenes didn’t affect the light atmosphere of the story is because we needed those scenes to make the story infinitely more realistic.

    It isn’t realistic for someone’s life to be perfect all the time, and Alice’s sure isn’t, but she does have two wonderful friends, an easily loveable love interest, and a family that may not be completely unprejudiced, but that will do their best to support her and see things from her point of view.

    Cherry on the cake: the writing couldn’t have been better. It is easy to read, without being too simplistic, entirely pleasant, and contains smart figures of style that facilitate our understanding of the various emotions that swim through the equally smart main character.

    Chocolate on the cheery on the cake: Alice being the authentic young woman that she is, we are presented here with an un-romanticized perspective of what it means to be a college student. How rare is that?

    Whenever you start to stare at the walls in your room, wondering what could possibly get you out of your reading slump, think of this book. It’ll do a magical job of reintroducing you to the love of reading. You don’t even have to thank me, thank the author instead.

    Buddy read with

    :)

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  • Caidyn (SEMI-HIATUS; BW Reviews; he/him/his)

    Okay.

    So.

    First thing’s first.

    I am asexual. I’ve identified as such since I was about 15-16 (and I’m nearly 22 now). Sex doesn’t interest me that much. While I, personally, would never discount that I could find someone I want to do that with or would feel comfortable doing it with, I’m not interested in it.

    And when I heard about this book, I was so excited. Finally, a book about asexuality while embracing that you can be attra

    Okay.

    So.

    First thing’s first.

    I am asexual. I’ve identified as such since I was about 15-16 (and I’m nearly 22 now). Sex doesn’t interest me that much. While I, personally, would never discount that I could find someone I want to do that with or would feel comfortable doing it with, I’m not interested in it.

    And when I heard about this book, I was so excited. Finally, a book about asexuality while embracing that you can be attracted romantically to people. Last year, I read Tash Hearts Tolstoy and thought it was a really solid book. So, I was getting excited that there would be another one out there for teens figuring out their sexuality.

    Yet, it reminded me more of Vanilla, minus it offending me to the core. It just made me sad.

    From the first chapter, something felt off.

    I thought that it was the writing at first. Instead of it being in first-person, it was in third and Kahn kept putting comments that were what Alice, the MC, was thinking. It made the page very cluttered and confusing. Just put them in the story. Or make it first-person. Or just make it omniscient. Either way, it grated on my nerves to the point where I couldn’t concentrate on the words.

    Then, it kind of got odd with her ex-girlfriend. She was demonized for wanting a sexual relationship to feel fulfilled while Alice was asexual. Maybe, just maybe, Alice should have said something before entering the relationship with someone who, as the book says, is hyper-sexual? (I have issues with the use of that, especially with the judgy tone it was used with. Everyone has different libidos and it’s all okay.) I get Alice was nervous about telling someone, but if you want an open and honest relationship, you kind of have to say something about your needs.

    Then, the ace rep felt… problematic. I’ve studied asexuality for my BA in psychology, along with having my personal experiences. Most studies have found that aces respond to pornography like sexual people. They just have no interest in doing it. Alice, however, apparently didn’t respond sexually at all, even when having sex.

    It just… struck me as odd. As inaccurate. Now, I’m not saying there aren’t aces who honestly feel nothing down there, even when stimulated, but that’s not what studies have found on average.

    I’m not saying that the statistics found in studies covers all ace experience. If you read this book and felt that it represented you perfectly, I am so happy for you! And I’m not being sarcastic either. I’m happy that you felt represented. However, I don’t think this covered all the nuances of asexuality that are out there.

    It got weirder when Alice stated at one point she didn’t have any code or whatever for a shirtless guy. She’s biromantic. So. She doesn’t find a shirtless, ripped guy aesthetically pleasing? Then, a few chapters later, she has a freaking break down over some guy who looked cute to her? It just… it didn’t add up to me. You don’t have a response to someone shirtless but you lose your shit like a twelve-year-old over a cute guy.

    It felt like it was perpetuating old stereotypes that aces don’t feel sexual pleasure when research says a lot of aces masturbate or are able to call someone who is hot really hot… without wanting to have sex. Speaking for myself here, I can look at people and say that they are really attractive, but that doesn’t mean I want to have sex.

    Add on top of that annoying characters who I couldn’t connect to at all because they felt like children and a writing style and characters that got on my last nerves within 10 pages equals a very unhappy Caidyn.

    It’s even worse since I really wanted to like this book. I would have pushed through it, but I could tell I’d end up in a slump if I did. It upset me to write this review, but I wanted to say something amid all the glowing responses. Again, if you felt represented, that’s amazing. Just that I didn’t and I’m really sad that I didn’t when I thought I would.

  • enqi ☁️✨ [joon's]

    this is my most anticipated book of 2018. it has amazing representation and the heroine is black, biromantic and asexual you're welcome

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