Book Review: “K-Pop Revolution” by Stephan Lee

Cover of "K-Pop Revolution" by Stephan Lee.
Cover of “K-Pop Revolution” by Stephan Lee.

I’m back with another book review, and this time I’m reviewing the book “K-Pop Revolution” by Stephan Lee! I reviewed the prequel to this book, and

In the sequel to K-Pop Confidential, Candace is a Rookie idol. Her life is suddenly filled with the fans, cameras, and glamor of stardom: She and her boyfriend, YoungBae, are a K-Pop power couple; she’s a walking icon at Brandt Foreign School; and her new girl group, known simply as THE GIRLS, is poised to break records across the industry. With her status as the industry’s K-Pop Warrior, she has all the clout at her disposal to make waves. Right?

Her label, S.A.Y., promises to help make the sweeping changes for the industry to become a more humane and compassionate place for artists. But what will happen when the road to a record-breaking debut isn’t as smooth as they’d planned? When a rival girl group emerges to steal the spotlight, carrying the message of change better than Candace ever could, she’ll have to decide what it’ll cost her and her bandmates to stand up for their beliefs. And as the world turns against her, with online bullies scrutinizing her every word, there’s only so much that one person can take.

From the top of the world to the brink of disaster, Candace is going to have to figure out why the world is out to get her. And she’s not going to be able to do it alone.

How far does one girl need to be pushed to start a K-Pop Revolution?”

Character Development: 1.5 out of 5 stars

I felt like Candace didn’t really grow much in this book. She never had much chances for agency, and even when she realizes she lacks that agency, she doesn’t really do much about it until the last few chapters of the book. In fact, I enjoyed the new rival group (NEVERIDOL) more than I did with THE GIRLS (the group Candace is part of) and would prefer to read more about them.

Candace’s parents are once again the voice of reason, and I wish Candace paid more attention to their warnings sooner about how nasty the K-pop industry can be at times. Even if Candace was essentially gaslighted and manipulated by the same company she signed with throughout the book, I think Candace could’ve spotted what was really going on if she heeded her parents’ warnings more.

Plot Development: 2.5 out of 5 stars

I do think the pacing of the plot was a bit disjointed at times and arguably worse than the last book. I do understand that there was a lot to take in – Candace and the others dealing with haters, manipulative companies, other rival groups, etc. but I felt like there was too much of everything that they were encountering at once. I didn’t have much room as a reader to really take it all in while reading and absorb what was really going on. Considering how there are both glitzy and darker sides to the K-pop industry in reality, however, this might have been intentional on the author’s part.

Overall, I’m rating this book 2 out of 5 stars!

It’s unfortunate that I enjoyed this less than “K-Pop Confidential.” But, for those who really enjoyed reading the first book, they might enjoy reading this sequel.

Please note: This review will be the last book review that I’m posting for this year!

Keep an eye out for my Top 5 and Worst 5 Books of 2022  blog posts, as well as other special posts coming your way for the holidays!

Book reviews will resume starting Jan. 17th, 2023. I hope all of you have a wonderful holiday season!

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