Book Review: Fake Dates and Mooncakes by Sher Lee

About the Book:

Title: Fake Dates and Mooncakes

Author: Sher Lee

Page Length: 272

Publication Date: May 16, 223

Publisher: Underlined

Synopsis: Heartstopper meets Crazy Rich Asians in this heartfelt, joyful paperback original rom-com that follows an aspiring chef who discovers the recipe for love is more complicated than it seems when he starts fake-dating a handsome new customer.

Dylan Tang wants to win a Mid-Autumn Festival mooncake-making competition for teen chefs—in memory of his mom, and to bring much-needed publicity to his aunt’s struggling Chinese takeout in Brooklyn.

Enter Theo Somers: charming, wealthy, with a smile that makes Dylan’s stomach do backflips. AKA a distraction. Their worlds are sun-and-moon apart, but Theo keeps showing up. He even convinces Dylan to be his fake date at a family wedding in the Hamptons.

In Theo’s glittering world of pomp, privilege, and crazy rich drama, their romance is supposed to be just pretend . . . but Dylan finds himself falling for Theo. For real. Then Theo’s relatives reveal their true colors—but with the mooncake contest looming, Dylan can’t risk being sidetracked by rich-people problems.

Can Dylan save his family’s business and follow his heart—or will he fail to do both?

LINKS:   Goodreads   |    Amazon

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My Review:

I was excited to read Fake Dates and Mooncakes, but it ended up not being the right fit for me.  

There were a couple of things I liked about the book. The cover is gorgeous!   Also, the representation was great, and I really liked Dylan’s family. They were fun and funny and so supportive of each other, and Dylan's cousin is comical. There was definitely a lot of love in his family, which contrasted Theo's well. I also liked the descriptions of food and culture, though it sometimes felt a little info-dumpy to me.   I think I wanted a bit more development and more showing and less telling.  And considering how much talk there was about food, I was surprised with how little a focus the actual mooncake competition was.  

Many things happened in the story that I found bothersome, and the relationship between Theo and Dylan wasn't my favorite.  Their dialogue felt forced, and they didn't have as much chemistry as I'd hoped.  And some of Theo's actions rubbed me the wrong way. I feel like he didn't really consider Dylan's feeling many times in the story, and he should have. 

I also hated that no one was really held accountable for their actions, especially when it came to how Dylan was treated.  The book read very young even though there were some pretty adult themes (death, grief, alcoholism, addiction, economic insecurity, and more)  and sexually suggestive scenes.  Overall, it might be a good read for the right audience, but I did not enjoy it.  




Check the content warnings before starting this read as there are elements that could be triggering for readers. Topics include death, grief, alcoholism, addiction, economic insecurity, and more.

16 thoughts on “Book Review: Fake Dates and Mooncakes by Sher Lee

  1. My review is coming out on Monday but basically, same! I’m so bummed we didn’t love this one more and it ended up being a not-so-great end with the author 😂 Great review, Julie!

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