Love and Other Moods is a coming-of-age story set in contemporary China, about falling in love, learning to adult, finding strength, and discovering one’s place in the world.
Naomi Kita-Fan uproots her life from New York to China when her fiancé’s company transfers him to Shanghai. After a disastrous turn of events, Naomi finds herself with no job, no boyfriend, and nowhere to live in a foreign country.
Amidst the backdrop of Shanghai welcoming millions of workers and visitors to the 2010 World Expo, we meet a tapestry of characters through Naomi: Joss Kong, a Shanghai socialite who leads an enviable life, but must harbor the secrets of her husband, Tay Kai Tang. Logan Hayden, a womanizing restaurateur looking for love in all the wrong places. Pan Jinsung and Ouyang Zhangjie, a silver-aged couple struggling with adapting to the ever-changing faces of their city. Dante Ouyang, who had just returned to China after spending years overseas, must choose between being filial and being in love. All their dreams and aspirations interweave within the sprawling web of Shanghai.This multilayered novel explores a kaleidoscope of shifting relationships—familial friction, amorous entanglements, volatile friendships—in one of the most dynamic metropolises of the twenty-first century.
Thank you so much to Feather and Dove Tours and author Crystal Z. Lee for gifting me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. You can check out the other hosts on this tour in Feather and Dove Tour’s tagged photos on their Instagram here!
I don’t believe that I had fully grasped what a New Adult novel consisted of until I read Love and Other Moods. As a “New Adult” myself I don’t think I have ever felt as seen as I have while reading Lee’s novel. Our main character, Naomi, has moved to an entirely new and culturally different city than what she is used to. On top of this, Naomi is alone and has to navigate this new world all on her own. This includes maybe sparking up some new romantic relationships as well as questioning where her career in Shanghai will go. Lee manages to take all of these struggles that Naomi is going through and make them feel like they are actually a part of someone’s life. Many times I feel as though some authors have their characters go through certain struggles just for the heck of it, while their character’s growth remains unchanged. However, Love and Other Moods allows us to see Naomi grow into herself and become the person she is meant to be. Naomi because a character I loved and rooted for and I can definitely see a re-read of this novel in the near future.
Meet the Author
Crystal Z. Lee is a Taiwanese American bilingual writer. She has called many places home, including Taipei, New York, Shanghai, and the San Francisco Bay Area. She was formerly a public relations executive who had worked with brands in the fashion, beauty, technology, and automotive industries. Love and Other Moods is her debut novel. She’s already hard at work on her next novel and a children’s book.
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