K-Pop Confidential by Stephan Lee

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K-Pop Confidential
Author: Stephan Lee

Expected Publication Date: September 15, 2020
Check it Out: Goodreads

Candace Park knows a lot about playing a role. For most of her life, she’s been playing the role of the quiet Korean girl who takes all AP classes and plays a classical instrument, keeping her dreams of stardom-and her obsession with SLK, K-pop’s top boyband-to herself. She doesn’t see how a regular girl like her could possibly become one of those K-pop goddesses she sees on YouTube. Even though she can sing. Like, really sing.

So when Candace secretly enters a global audition held by SLK’s music label, the last thing she expects is to actually get a coveted spot in their trainee program. And convincing her strict parents to let her to go is all but impossible … although it’s nothing compared to what comes next.

Under the strict supervision of her instructors at the label’s headquarters in Seoul, Candace must perfect her performance skills to within an inch of her life, learn to speak Korean fluently, and navigate the complex hierarchies of her fellow trainees, all while following the strict rules of the industry. Rule number one? NO DATING, which becomes impossible to follow when she meets a dreamy boy trainee. And in the all-out battle to debut, Candace is in danger of planting herself in the middle of a scandal lighting up the K-pop fandom around the world.

If she doesn’t have what it takes to become a perfect, hair-flipping K-pop idol, what will that mean for her family, who have sacrificed everything to give her the chance? And is a spot in the most hyped K-pop girl group of all time really worth risking her friendships, her future, and everything she believes in?
MY feelingsI have been so excited to get my hands on this book ever since I read the blurb. In case you didn’t know, I love K-pop with my whole soul. So it was meant for me to read this book. Also, I must say that this cover is one my favorites of the year is seriously giving me BlackPink vibes.

The biggest take away from this book is getting a look into what being a trainee would be like. Some of it was straight up brutal and while I hope that the K-Pop companies aren’t this problematic and bullying, know that it’s happening. I for one have caught myself comparing my body or skin to an idol. Imagine having the people who manage your carrier tell you to get better skin, put you on a deadly diet, or just downright push you too far? I applaud this book for showing that side.

Our main character Candace was a force to be dealt with. I loved her spirit and how she never quit. We go through her journey with her and it was a fun and wild ride.

We have so many K-Pop references here, so I feel even if you aren’t a K-Pop fan you won’t be lost. This talked about so many songs and actions that made me happy as a fan. Ya girl really felt seen! Let me know if you want any song or group recommendations!

Why I couldn’t give this one five stars was because of the romance and the ending. The romance was a bit undeveloped to me. I never felt the chemistry between them. As far as the ending, I would have liked an epilogue at least. Even if it was just a paragraph. I’m uncertain if this is supposed to be part of a series or not. It ended like it could be. If not, then it ended a bit abrupt to me.

All in all, I enjoyed my time reading this book. It’s super fast paced and entertaining. New K-Pop fan or old, give it a try!
4 Star Rating
I received an ARC via Edelweiss for an honest review.

Instagram | Goodreads

23 thoughts on “K-Pop Confidential by Stephan Lee

  1. I just discovered kpop so I’m really new (only really know about BTS and Astro and that’s because of the actors from my kdramas, haha) to this world but I’m fascinated and hooked. I also started reading Shine by Jessica Jung today so I’m looking forward to that read.

    Thanks so much for sharing your thoughts on this book, I’m going to buy it.


  2. So glad you liked this one overall! I’m sure I will feel the same about the romance but I am still going to give it a try.


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