Synopses & Reviews
Judy Lees life has not turned out the way shed imagined. Shes divorced, shes broke, and her dreams of being a painter have fallen by the wayside. Her co-worker Roger might be a member of the Yakuza gang, but hes also the only person whos asked her on a date in the last year.
Meanwhile, her bother Kevin, an former professional tennis player, has decided to donate a kidney to their ailing father until it turns out that hes not a genetic match. His father reluctantly tells him he was adopted, but the only information Kevin is given about his birth parents is a nude picture of his birth mother. Ultimately Kevins quest to learn the truth about his biological parents takes him across lines he never thought hed cross: from tony Princeton to San Franciscos seedy Tenderloin district, from the squeaky clean tennis court to the gritty adult film industry.
Told in alternating chapters from the points of view of Judy and Kevin, Love Love is a story about two people figuring out how to live, how to love, and how to be their best selves amidst the chaos of their lives.
"Woo's poignant, engrossing follow up to 2009's Everything Asian chronicles the lives of two adult siblings responsible, organized Kevin Lee and his scattered younger sister, Judy when a medical procedure surprisingly reveals that Kevin was adopted. After seeing how her father treated her dying mother, in addition to a lifetime of his withering disapproval, Judy is indifferent to the fact that her elderly dad now needs a new kidney. Kevin confronts him, then quits his job teaching tennis and goes to San Francisco on a quest to find out more about his birth parents. Both Kevin and Judy have endured recent divorces and miss their former spouses. Judy is attempting a relationship with erstwhile colleague Roger Nakamura, who seems to have a few secrets. After accepting an offer to stay in California with Claudia St. James, the eccentric mother of one of his precocious students, Kevin begins a physical relationship with her. Woo's narrative takes serendipitous turns he has a knack for making these twists seem organic, like things that would happen in life. Scenes recounting memories of family and lost love are also skillfully interspersed. (Sept.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
Praise for Love Love
"Woos poignant, engrossing follow up to 2009s Everything Asian chronicles the lives of two adult siblings...Woos narrative takes serendipitous turnshe has a knack for making these twists seem organic, like things that would happen in life. Scenes recounting memories of family and lost love are also skillfully interspersed."Publishers Weekly
"Woos observations about aging, loss, and disillusionment are so smart, so sharp and astute that theyll haunt readers long after the final page has been turned. That he manages to find the beauty, humor, and even optimism in the struggle makes this glorious, at times painful, but always rewarding novel a stunning achievement."Booklist Starred Review
"Woos narrative takes serendipitous turnshe has a knack for making these twists seem organic, like things that would happen in life. Scenes recounting memories of family and lost love are also skillfully interspersed." Publishers Weekly
"A writer of deep pathos and empathy, Woo (Everything Asian, 2009) has given us a deeply felt novel of parents and children, husbands and wivesthe many ways we try to connect and fail; and how sometimes, somehow, we succeed."Kirkus
You will love Love Love. Like Kevin on the tennis court, Sung J. Woo marries brute force with clever misdirection; brilliant flourishes with measured restraint; craft with strategy. The result is a gem of a novel, by turns poignant, heartbreaking and wickedly funny. The only dangling thread: whens the film adaptation coming out?” Jon Wertheim, Sports Illustrated executive editor and author of Strokes of Genius: Federer, Nadal, and the Greatest Match Ever Played
Love Love is sad and funny and full of absolutely brilliant writing.”Stewart ONan, bestselling author of West of Sunset and The Odds
Love Love is a wonderful book about two characters I fell for instantly. I was hooked by the novels unexpected twists and pitfalls, which kept me on the edge of my seat all the way until the end. Sung J. Woos sure voice and beautiful descriptions will seduce any reader who enjoys a good story about love that doesnt come easy. A great read.” Katie Crouch, bestselling author of Girls in Trucks and Abroad
With antic humor and boundless sympathy, Sung J. Woo gives his broken characters something to reach for. Love Love is an ace.” Ed Park, author of Personal Days
Sung J. Woos Love Love is a wonderful read funny, tender, touching, and true. This is the novel about tennis, porn, art, and family that the world has been waiting for.” Alix Ohlin, author of Signs and Wonders and Inside
Sung J. Woo has written a surprising, moving novel that powerfully explores notions of family, creativity, skill, and yes love.” -Louisa Thomas, staff writer at Grantland and author of Conscience: Two Soldiers, Two Pacifists, One Familya Test of Will and Faith in World War
This tale of unconventional love in unconventional families is funny, knowing, and always surprising. Love Love has got it all: tennis, of course, but also organized crime, pornography, a venomous snake, and more twists than a bag of Rold Golds. Give it half a chance and it will charm the terry-cloth headband off you.”J. Robert Lennon, author of Familiar and See You in Paradise
Praise for Everything Asian:
"Full of wit, humor and heart, the book succinctly captures the struggle of an immigrant child trying to fit into American society and in his own dysfunctional family." Chicago Sun-Times
"A novel that both delights and instructs." Kirkus, starred review
"Theres a certain genius inherent in choosing a strip mall as a 1980s period setting, and Woo makes the most of it, filling the book with the way customers and neighboring storeowners lives touch sometimes only glancingly on the three Kims first year in America. . . . Woo has cleverly constructed a central narrative that runs like a Venn diagram through the tour of Peddlers Town."Christian Science Monitor
About the Author
Sung J. Woo
s short stories and essays have appeared in The New York Times
, and KoreAm Journal
. His debut novel, Everything Asian
was praised by The Christian Science Monitor
and the Chicago Sun-Times
. It won the 2010 Asian Pacific American Librarians Association Literature Award. A graduate of Cornell University with an MFA from New York University, he lives in Washington, New Jersey.