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Rent a Boyfriend

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3.64  ·  Rating details ·  2,264 ratings  ·  705 reviews
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before meets The Farewell in this incisive romantic comedy about a college student who hires a fake boyfriend to appease her traditional Taiwanese parents, to disastrous results, from the acclaimed author of American Panda.

Chloe Wang is nervous to introduce her parents to her boyfriend, because the truth is, she hasn’t met him yet either. She hir
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Kindle Edition, 400 pages
Published November 10th 2020 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
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Average rating 3.64  · 
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 ·  2,264 ratings  ·  705 reviews


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Gloria Chao
Feb 18, 2020 added it  ·  (Review from the author)
Dearest Reader,

Rent a Boyfriend is inspired by a real-life practice in some Asian countries where women hire fake boyfriends to bring home, commonly at Lunar New Year, to alleviate the pressure from family to find a husband. For this novel, I adapted this practice into a fictional diaspora version, with all details—including the company Rent for Your ’Rents—created to better fit the American setting.

This book has:
• Fake dating
• Dual POV
• College-age protagonists
• Taiwanese-American characters
• H
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emma
Forgive me for the main character syndrome, but if I were to have a curse, I always presumed it’d be more of a fun one.

I mean, I grew up reading the Brothers Grimm and the Andrew Lang fairy books and just about every middle grade fairytale retelling series I could get my hands on, so I think you can cut me some slack for thinking my curse would at least involve a sorceress or some beasties or a creepy goblin creature in enchanted woods, if not a handsome prince and a happily ever after.

But whate
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Kimberly (Deity of Books)
Chloe Wang or Jing Jing is a college freshman majoring in economics. She has pressure from her parents to marry Hong Bo, a wealthy asshole. Does Chloe like Hong Bo? Of course not. Well then, does Hong Bo like Chloe? NO. She decides to hire a fake boyfriend from Rent for Your ’Rents, a company that specializes in providing fake boyfriends, to try to stop her parents from forcing her to marry Hong Bo.

Drew, the other main character, is the fake boyfriend. He was disowned by his family after choosin
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jenny✨
11/10/2020: HAPPY PUB DAY, RENT A BOYFRIEND! 🥺🥺

Y'alllll I could totally see a rent-a-boyfriend service BOOMING on the subtle asian dating Facebook group. Someone get on that stat!

⭐️⭐️⭐️✨ 3.5 stars! (Or maybe mooncakes would be more appropriate!? 🥮🥮🥮✨)

Some of the lighthearted parts of this book were laugh-out-loud funny and SO relatable. The rest was... clichéd and saccharine as hell and waaaay too sappy for my tastes.

Some of the painful bits were moving and poignant and SO relatable. Th
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Mrinmayi
Aug 20, 2020 marked it as to-read
Ughhhh...I have to wait another month for this book!! I am soooo excited to pick this up!!
So till then, I will just make memes!!
As the blurb says..the MC's parents won't help him pursue his "Arts" dream career

Mrin checking to see if this site actually exists Just in case ...

How it feels trying to find the guy that your family would actually like

End result is...



*you're

Trust me if this RENT A BOYFRIEND service was real...it would be a hit!!


Update 1
This book 'speaks' to my soul😂
the MC seems relatab
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Nenia ✨ I yeet my books back and forth ✨ Campbell
OMG THIS SOUNDS LIKE THE PLOT TO A MANGA

I NEEEEEEEEED IT

Seriously, dying for a copy of this because Gloria Chao is SO nice AND AMERICAN PANDA was the bomb dot com. So obviously I need to be all over this like green on pistachios.

****IT'S CURRENTLY $1.99 AS OF 2/1****

YESSSS
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Jessica
This was a cute romance that handled some pretty heavy topics. Chloe decides to hire a fake boyfriend to take home to her parents so she can get out of an arranged marriage with a horrible guy her parents have set her up with. Chloe and Andrew start actually falling for each other as they pretend for her parents and Chloe has to navigate her identity with her parents and what kind of person she wants to be.

The romance between Chloe and Andrew was really cute and I liked how they started to trul
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Claude's Bookzone
Well that was really cute and funny but way too long.

This started out so well and there were a few laugh out loud moments and I absolutely loved the dynamics between Chloe and Drew. The story was engaging and the family completely adorable in their craziness. I won't do any spoilers but there was a point where the story could have ended and I would have loved it. But it didn't end. Then there was another point where it could have ended and I would have been happy. But it didn't end. Then there w
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ilsa➹
Sep 01, 2020 rated it it was ok
*sigh*

you know when a book has such a promising blurb, and you pick it up, and it also has a promising beginning, so now you're pretty sure you're going to LOVE this story...and then you don't?

yeah, i know the feeling well.

the actual fake dating story line of this (which lasted until 30 % in) was super cute and I was smiling like an idiot!! There was so much adorableness and "omg is this real or not? are we still pretending?!??!" and that's exactly the kind of yearning I am here for.

Unfortunate
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Mlpmom (Book Reviewer)
Jul 28, 2020 rated it really liked it
Seriously cute, seriously touching, and seriously good. This was such a refreshing read full of so many emotions. I truly enjoyed every single page from the background of the characters, to the ethnicity, to the heart warming slow burn romance, this was a read perfect to get away for a few hours, let go, and just be.

*ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*
Shealea
Jan 16, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: not-recommended
I'm torn.

On one hand, my biggest issue with Chao's debut, American Panda , was the extreme positioning of American values and Asian culture, wherein the former is framed as good while the latter is presented as bad, regressive, and restrictive. I wanted more nuances in this particular discourse, and I have to admit that Rent a Boyfriend delivers more in that aspect. I think that should be acknowledged and commended.

But on the other hand, among all the Gloria Chao books I've read (a total of 3
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Emma
Nov 14, 2020 rated it really liked it
This was my first Gloria Chao's book, but I'm sure it won't be the last!

Even though it has a trope at its core that we all have seen multiple times, it was not used in the same old way. Here fake dating is taken to a whole other level and Chloe actually hires Drew to pretend to be her fake boyfriend for the holidays, so that she can get her Chinese parents off her back and not marry Hongbo, a disgusting guy her parents want to set her up with.

The premise is obviously what drew me in, but in th
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CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
I've read all of Gloria Chao's books so far, and I really think Rent a Boyfriend is my favourite of hers to date.

- Follows Taiwanese-American teens Chloe (known as Jing-Jing to her family and community), a college teen who hires Drew, an artist, as her boyfriend over Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Lunar New Year to disentangle herself from a preposterous proposal with the local yet rich asshole.
- This is a warm, empathetic, and nuanced story that blends fluffy and romantic with serious and incisi
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Hsinju
rent a boyfriend book tour banner

The full schedule for the tour is here on Hear Our Voices Book Tours’ website. Check out my blog (post will be live at 10am Central Time, November 13th, 2020) for Taiwan travel recommendations and more of my thoughts on this book!

🥮🥮🥮

[EN]

Content warnings: sexism, misogyny, classism, fatphobia, arranged marriage, manipulation, disowning, homophobia, a few references to the HP series

“[...] I’m my own knight in shining armor” — Chloe


As a born-and-raised Taiwanese, I was incredibly excited when I fir
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booksneedcaffeinetoo
Jan 22, 2020 marked it as to-read
I SEE FAKE DATING AND I MUST BUY

(update: have you all SEEN that GORGEOUS COVER?!??)
Anniek
This book in a nutshell:

- Girl needs a reason to decline a proposal from the most awful person ever
- Hires professional as a fake boyfriend who should get her parents' approval
- But... are there feelings, maybe?
- Bonding over mooncakes at midnight
- Baking cookies together at Christmas
- Drama, struggles, but also Fluff

This book has such a perfect balance between being a fun romcom and dealing with deeper issues, like how the main character struggles in her relationship with her parents and in her
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Jessica
Dec 22, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
So fun! I didn't know, from this aggressively pink cover, that this was a Christmas book, and YET, it takes place from Thanksgiving to Valentine's Day, with a good chunk of it at Christmas. Loved the descriptions of blending Taiwanese traditions with American, and it was heartbreaking/fascinating to read about the struggles of American-born Taiwanese/Asian children vs. their immigrant parents. This was not, despite the cover (again, SO PINK!) a fluffy cotton candy read, but one that dealt with s ...more
Jacob Proffitt
Jan 27, 2021 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: unfinished
So I'm out at about a third. Maybe it's a cultural difference that I can't process but I really, really hate all the deference being given to parents who don't deserve it. Chloe's parents aren't quite pimps but they are looking to sell her "golden purity" to the highest bidder. They've equated "has money" to "make you happy" and say really crappy things like "I know what you need better than you do" and "it's for your own good". Add that they are explicitly thrilled about the perks they are gett ...more
Jennifer
Rent a Boyfriend is my third book by this author. It is a contemporary romantic comedy. But with a younger feel. It is not really YA (the narrators are 19 and 21). It focuses on the cultural aspects of being a Taiwanese American and dealing with Asian parents.

The narrators are 19 year old Chloe (1st person POV). And 21 year old Drew (1st person POV).

Chloe's family lives in Palo Alto, California. She goes to school in Chicago. The book's main focus is on the different holidays (Thanksgiving, Chri
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Jeann (Happy Indulgence)
Nov 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: romance
Who's tired of the fake dating trope? Definitely not me! Especially when it involves a college student hiring a fake boyfriend just to trick her parents into thinking that she's nabbed an eligible bachelor.

I adored Rent a Boyfriend so much! We often hear about traditional Chinese parents being super strict and being "tiger moms" and in this case, that's what Chloe is experiencing here. Her relationship with her father is strained, especially since he never really communicates with her, and her m
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Celia McMahon
Sep 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
I received a complimentary copy of this book for review purposes.


Hello, yea, this is Celia, and I have something to say. This book hit all the sweet spots for me, and I now know to make congee and I'm going to eat it all the time.

That being said, thank you Edelweiss, and the publisher for the arc.

Chloe needs to get her traditional Taiwanese parents off her back so, for Thanksgiving break, she hires a boyfriend from Rent for your 'Rents as a stand-in so they'll back off trying to get her to mar
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Bethany
Nov 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
Based on a real practice in some Asian countries, Rent a Boyfriend follows a Taiwanese girl named Chloe who rents a fake boyfriend (Drew) for the holidays (home from her first year of college) in hopes of dissuading her family from pressuring her to be with this really awful guy from a wealthy family in her community. Except real feelings develop and things get very...complicated.

This is a book about familial expectations, cultural gaps with immigrant parents, and the struggle to be who you are
...more
nitya
Dec 06, 2020 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sarah {The Clever Reader}
Aug 31, 2020 rated it it was amazing
*** Thank you Netgalley for approving me in exchange for an honest review!

This book was so adorable! Chloe's parents are pushing her to marry Hongbo, the most eligible bachelor, but for reasons Chloe has no idea. She despises Hongbo after he takes her on a date to a strip club. When her parents invite her home she panics and decides to hire a boyfriend to try to get her parents to understand how much she does not want to marry Hongbo.

Chloe "rents" a boyfriend to temporarily deter her parents in
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Isabel (The Reader & The Chef)
Nov 15, 2020 rated it really liked it
*Thanks to MTMC Tours and the author for providing the review copy. All thoughts are my own*

"Game. On. All I had to do was convince my parents that Andrew was the love of my life and theirs. Piece of (moon)cake, right?"

I enjoyed reading Rent A Boyfriend, fake dating is one of my favorite bookish tropes so I has so happy to read it!! Chloe and Drew are the main characters of this story and after meeting in one of the most unconventional ways (Chloe hired Drew to be her boyfriend for Thanksgiv
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l a u r a ♛
4/5 :)

I think the best part of this book is the humor. The little bits of it everywhere is really entertaining and makes me smile and laugh.

Chloe’s (Jing-Jing’s) parents kind of reminds me of Cath’s parents from Heartless. Except the king is not even half as bad as Hongbo…

this book gave me serious Crazy Rich Asians vibes…

*rtc*

01/05/20

━━━━━━━━━━━༻༻❁༺༺━━━━━━━━━━━

bahahahaha not THE talk 😳😭
JingJing's mom is too funny i cant-
The alarms in my head went off like there was a fire and tornado and flood
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♠ TABI⁷ ♠
Nov 12, 2019 marked it as to-read
Shelves: edelweiss
this sounds like a k-drama plot

I'm in
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Mehsi
flailsThis was an amazing cute fun wonderful realistic book! Gloria Chao did it again!


I finished the book some days ago (writing this one on the 18th of November) and I just CANNOT find the words for this amazing book. It was a rollercoaster of emotions, laughter, a few tears, cheering for Drew and Chloe to get together. But here I am. I am going to try to throw my emotions on this page. Sorry if it is chaotic. Sorry if it is a mess. I blame the book. 😛 I will make a list of all that I loved in
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Stacee
Nov 01, 2020 rated it liked it
3.5 stars

I am a sucker for fake dating and I loved the idea of this one.

I really liked Chloe and Drew. They’re both smart, good people who are looking to make their place in the world. I enjoyed their instant easiness and the open communication they had. Chloe’s parents were hard to read at times. Even though I knew they meant well and loved her in their own way, some of their words and actions had me cringing.

Plot wise, it did get a bit repetitive. Scenes and even some conversations felt lik
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Carol
Nov 25, 2020 rated it did not like it
I was so excited for this book, but it fell really short. The characters seemed contrived, the plot was trying too hard, and a lot of events in the book frustrated me. Chloe did not resonate with me, to be honest she seemed a little spoiled and petulant. I liked Drew as a character better, but still their love story was too good to be true. I guess that is part of the appeal of this book, that is a little bit far-fetched, but it did not work for me.

It was frustrating that everything seemed to f
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Gloria Chao is the critically acclaimed author of American Panda, Our Wayward Fate, and the upcoming Rent a Boyfriend. When she’s not writing, you can find her with her husband on the curling ice or hiking the Indiana Dunes. After a brief detour as a dentist, she is now grateful to spend her days in fictional characters’ heads instead of real people’s mouths.

Visit her tea-and-book-filled world at
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As dedicated readers already know, some of the best and most innovative stories on the shelves come from the constantly evolving realm of...
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“Sometimes I'm ashamed of how I've clung to them with bloody, torn-apart hands, trying to make it work even after they show me again and again it's not worth it. But I'm somehow also ashamed of choosing myself now.” 0 likes
“I wanted to reach into my chest and hand her my heart, so she could finally understand what made me tic. Maybe then she would also see how each of her words perpetuated the crack she and my father had put there months ago.” 0 likes
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