Breakup Book

Every breakup has its playlist. 

How do you get over a seven-year relationship? 21-year-old Jill is trying to find out. But moving on is a harder job when Kim, her ex-boyfriend, is the lead guitarist of the band, and Jill is the vocalist. Every song they play together feels like slicing open a barely healed tattoo. 

Jill’s best friend Miki says she will be out of this gloom soon. Breakups have a probation period, he says. Jill is on the last month of hers and Miki is patiently keeping her company. 

But the real silver lining is Shinta. Having a hot Japanese actor friend in times like these is a welcome distraction. This gorgeous celebrity has been defying time zones and distance through the years to be there for Jill. Now he is here, physically present, and together he and Jill go through old lyrics, vivid memories, walks in the rain, and bottles of beer. Together they try to answer the question: what do you do when forever ends?

I love the angst, honesty and rawness of this book. I felt like I was watching a film--the characters' actions, dialogues, even the transitions in between scenes, played out clearly in my head. I can tell that the author put a lot of effort into it, even penning the lyrics of the songs mentioned in the chapters, but I read it effortlessly--which is a benchmark of a good book.

It made me reminisce about my 20s, when I was indie-band follower, and experiencing that elusive high because of a guitar riff, or how the bassline perfectly complemented the melody. And yes, it had me swooning over the non-band member, which, come to think of it, is a trope present in two of my fave books--Attachments and Lola and the Boy Next Door.

I look forward to Tria's future books, and the next installment of her Playlist series, wherein I'll be rooting for the friendzoned character. Go figure.

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