When I first heard the plot and storyline for Loveboat, Taipei, my heart immediately grew 10x as this was the representation I had always been dreaming of my entire life. 💖
After flying through the pages in less than a day, I’m so happy to say that Abigail Hing Wen’s story not only met my expectations, but she went above and beyond, crafting a plotline that kept me continuously on my toes and yearning for more. 😍 From the heart-skipping romance to moments of self-discovery, this book was simultaneously full of fun and life yet also incredibly thought-provoking and reflective, exploring both the complex dynamics of culture and family.
LOVEBOAT, TAIPEI by Abigail Hing Wen
PUBLISHED BY HarperTeen (HaperCollins)
ADD TO GOODREADS // BOOK DEPOSITORY
“Our cousins have done this program,” Sophie whispers. “Best kept secret. Zero supervision.”
And just like that, Ever Wong’s summer takes an unexpected turn. Gone is Chien Tan, the strict educational program in Taiwan that Ever was expecting. In its place, she finds Loveboat: a summer-long free-for-all where hookups abound, adults turn a blind eye, snake-blood sake flows abundantly, and the nightlife runs nonstop.
But not every student is quite what they seem:
Ever is working toward becoming a doctor but nurses a secret passion for dance.
Rick Woo is the Yale-bound child prodigy bane of Ever’s existence whose perfection hides a secret.
Boy-crazy, fashion-obsessed Sophie Ha turns out to have more to her than meets the eye.
And under sexy Xavier Yeh’s shell is buried a shameful truth he’ll never admit.
When these students’ lives collide, it’s guaranteed to be a summer Ever will never forget.
Trigger/Content Warnings: drinking, sex, friendship betrayal (reconciled), depressed and suicidal side character, abusive relationship, abusive parent (off-page), leaked nude
Book Review ✏️
Loveboat, Taipei follows the story of Ever Wong, a Chinese American girl who is sent by her parents to Chien Tan, an educational summer academy in Taipei notoriously known as Loveboat for its lack of adult supervision. Although Ever is initially hesitant to be placed in this new setting, she quickly finds friendship amongst the other students and even some unexpected romance along the way. ✨ Throughout the 8 weeks at the program, she learns more about her heritage and culture while also finding a creative outlet to further explore her passion for dance.
Abigail Hing Wen’s writing completely immerses you in the gorgeous setting of Taiwan and with each page, I felt closer and closer to home. 🏙 In some ways, it felt like reading a really good Asian drama with its subtle plot twists and intense moments where I needed to fangirl to the world. For those who consider 400+ page books to be on the longer end, I found the story to be perfectly paced—there was never a dull moment, but I also didn’t feel rushed. Most notably, I was blown away by how Wen captured Ever’s passion and heart for dancing with descriptions of movements that tell a story.
“And as I lunge and whirl my bo staff, dancing to the ancient drum beats, I fell all the parts of myself coming together: glad that a part of me is Chinese, a part of me American, and all of me is simply me.”
Now, let’s talk about the romance in this story because I was LIVING for each and every second of it. 😭💘 My heart was bouncing all over the place from my newest favorite literary love triangle (tied with Tessa/Jem/Will from The Infernal Devices), and these characters have become my children whom I must protecc(!!) **mild spoilers** On one end, we have golden boy Rick Woo, a Yale-bound/chess prodigy/football star who is everyone Asian mother’s dream son/son-in-law, and on the other end, we have mysterious, brooding bad boy, Xavier Yeh. I don’t want to give too much away, but I adore these perfectly imperfect characters so so much.
It’s been two days since I’ve finished this book, and I honestly tear up thinking of how much I adored it. (am I being dramatic? yes. do I care? no.) As a Taiwanese American and a former ballet dancer, I felt such a strong connection to Ever, and it was so easy to fall in love with every other character as well. 💫 In 493 pages, Loveboat, Taipei, covers a range of thought-provoking topics from financial privilege, expectations of first-generation immigrants and children of diaspora, the intimacy of sex and love, the clashing messages of individualism and community amongst Eastern and Western culture, and so much more.
“We are powerful. We can be anyone we want to be—daughters, sons, mothers, fathers, citizens, human beings. We showed Taipei that tonight. And in the days to come, we will show the world.”
I sincerely hope you decide to pick up this book because I promise you won’t be disappointed! Abigail Hing Wen’s debut novel was a heartwarming showstopper, and I can’t wait to see what she writes next. 🥰🎉
Character Mood Boards 📸
As a quick disclaimer, all photos for these mood boards were taken from Pexels and Unsplash which are my favorite go-to’s for free stock images. 💫 If you like these aesthetics, please check out my rainbow mood boards for Spin the Dawn and Wicked Fox!
E V E R . W O N G
R I C K . W O O
X A V I E R . Y E H
International Giveaway 🎁
About the Author
Abigail Hing Wen is a Silicon Valley venture lawyer working with AI startups. She is a Vermont College of Fine Arts graduate, Wild Things blogger, and YA writer of her debut, Loveboat, Taipei. Stay up to date with all news on her website.
Follow her on Twitter, Instagram, and Goodreads.
🌟 Thank you so much to HarperCollins International for providing me with an ARC in exchange for an honest review as part of their blog tour. Be sure to check out the full blog tour schedule! 🌟
- Infinite Golden Floors
- Lyrical Reads
- Kaitlyn Gosiaco
- Kitty Marie’s Reading Corner
- Fanna Wants the World to Read
- Read by Tiffany
- Drizzle & Hurricane Books
- Pages and Coffee Cups
- Happily, Hedy
- Not Just Fiction
- Flipping Through the Pages
Are you excited for Loveboat, Taipei?
Which is your favorite mood board?
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Instagram | YouTube | Twitter | Goodreads | Pinterest
22 thoughts on “Blog Tour Review + Mood Boards: Loveboat, Taipei by Abigail Hing Wen (+ INTL Giveaway)”
Ah, loved this book so much!!
Right?!?! It was so easy to love it 😭❤️
I’m so happy reading this! This book is quickly becoming one of my highly anticipated release so I’m happy that you loved it. But more than that, it’s because I can see how much you adore this book and how you feel represented by the story. I think it’s really lovely ❤
Aww I’m so so glad that you enjoyed my review! I really loved this book so much I wanted others to feel it too 🥰 Let me know what you think if you do pick it up!
Ahh reading this review makes me SO EXCITED for this book! I’m Taiwanese too so I’m so excited for the rep; also that quote you included about being part Taiwanese, part American, and all me makes my halfie heart so happy ❤ Also I had no idea that the main character is a dancer and I did dance for like 10 years so eeeeee I'm so excited to read about that too!! Also every time I see your mood boards a part of me sighs in happiness because they're sooo a e s t h e t i c and I feel very satisfied ❤
YAYAYYAAY I’m so so glad that you are hyped for this!! I honestly feel the exact same way as you because I loved reading about Taiwan and seeing someone who looks like us on page 😭❤️ and yes!! YOU RELATE!! I’m honestly so excited!! I tried to make the mood boards very representative of the characters but not spoil anything either 😉
YOU DANCED BALLET?? OMG SAME. I quit just when I got my pointe shoes though because of life (and blisters ughhh)! But it was super fun while I danced (I even got to dance in the production of Cinderella!)
yes!! i danced for 10+ years 🥰 and i totally understand! i had to cut down on dance when i was in high school but oof dancer feet is definitely not pretty 😅 i’m super excited for you to read this!!
Ten years is amazing!! You must have been so good!! ❤
OOH yes I'm so excited especially after I saw you shouting about it on Twitter!!
and also well done for 999 followers!! This is an Amazing Feat (also my weird number aesthetics is Happy)
Love your review, Tiffany! I absolutely loved the love triangle between Ever, Rick and Xavier despite my usual hatred for them. Abigail wrote it all do beautifully that it was super hard to take a side. This book ended up totally surprising me in do many ways 😄
I totally agree!! I normally don’t love love triangles, but I was fully invested in this one 😍 Her writing made everything so easy to read, and the end result was so beautiful!!
Tiffany, this review was beautiful as all of your reviews are 😍 can i please, please have your reviewing skills :(( also, i’m ashamed because I MISSED MY BLOG TOUR STOP FOR THIS. ugh, it’s truly sad boi hours for me, but i’m reading this right now, and I hope to post my review soon! so far, I love how Ever’s parents are written. You can really feel how suffocating the grip they have on her life is. I also love how Asian the book is! The cast of characters is almost all Asian, and it’s set in Taiwan—we stan!
i can already feel the potential love triangle between Ever, Rick, and Xavier, and I… am not ready. on the bright side though, those character moodboards blessed my eyes, and I’m so ??? at how good you are at making things pretty :(( ❤
WAHHHH CAITLIN!! Your kind words honestly make me emo every time 😭 I’m such a fan of your review too though so YOU DO YOU GIRL 💖 and ahhh it’s ok don’t feel bad!! i hope life treats you well currently, and i’m super excited to read your post when it’s up!!
i totally agree and love how unapologetically asian this book was?? even though it touches on themes of family and culture, it also has so much love. and it’s just so nice to see a sweet (okay more like heartwrenching) romance with a character that looks like us 😭 tell me who you’re rooting for in the love triangle later but aghhhh okay i added like some subtle hints of the plot in the moodboards but also trying not to give away anything either 😍
OH MY GOD your moodboards are INCREDIBLE???? I’m just in awe they just feel so fitting with the story and characters and I’m feeling them all deeply okay. These are fantastic, really ❤
I'm so happy you loved this book so much! I agree that there never was a dull moment in the story and I loved that so much about it, as well, I always wanted to keep on reading to know what would happen next. And these characters were amazing, I'm not a fan of love triangles and yet here, I found it perfectly done! ❤
YOU MAKE ME 🥺🥺🥺❤️❤️❤️!! I’m SO GLAD you loved them, and I was secretly somehow who read the book would catch on to some of the little hints and pieces of plot I was putting in! This book was truly a favorite of 2020 already, and everything about it made me happy (okay also sad but I LOVED reading it!!)
Wonderful review, Tiffany! And oh my goodness, those mood boards are spectacular! I’m so happy that you enjoyed this one and that the book displays a great portrayal of how certain aspects of eastern and western culture can vary! The characters all sound so amazing and complex and I can’t wait to meet each and every one of them! Haha 🙂
Aww thank you, Kelly!! I’m so glad that you enjoyed my review, especially the mood boards. 🥰 You’re going to love this book so much because it explores exactly those cultural differences, but it’s also just a whole lot of fun!!