“He is my small son”
I’m going to write this review a little differently; instead of telling you the synopsis of this book right away, I’m going to show you the two parts of my heart.
➽ Best Friends & Boy Bands – If you follow me on any social media, you will know that BTS has completely and wholeheartedly taken over my life. The amount of unconditional happiness that I have found within myself because of BTS could be a thesis statement all alone. But the pure joy I feel when I know that I will get to follow and enjoy BTS and everything they give ARMY, along side my best friends? That’s something I don’t have words for, and I don’t think I ever will, but it truly owns half of my heart.
➽ Little Brothers & Video Games – I am very open in many reviews about my little brother being my best friend in this entire world. He always has been, and he always will be. Ever since I graduated college and moved across the country, we have kept our closeness because of video games. Don’t get me wrong, we play them nonstop when we are together, in the same room, too, but it is truly something that I’ve been able to do with him to never make me feel like I’m away from him, and because of this, this combination makes up half of my heart.
Foolish Hearts is a book that made me feel so seen and so very whole, because it combines those two halves of my heart seamlessly. Our main character, Claudia, spends her afternoons playing video games with her siblings and her best friend, not really looking to add any addition people into her life. That is, until the end of this summer, right before school is about to start up, where she has to go to a party where she accidentally overhears two girls break up.
Iris and Paige were the *it* couple at Claudia’s school, but now that they are broken up, Paige gets to still be the beloved, popular one, where Iris looks like the mean and heartless one. And when Iris and Claudia are forced to work together, not once, but twice, Claudia also uncovers Iris’s unconditional love for a boy band. And the start of a beautiful friendship blooms.
Not to get too personal in this review, but I am also pretty open about Jane being the reason that I got into BTS, and even though we were friends before, BTS really made Jane my best friend, and it really changed my life in the best way possible. The Iris and Claudia comparisons were just a little too real, but they were also a little too perfect.
So much more happens in this book, maybe with boys and them entering Claudia’s MMO and making me swoon because I’m nerdy and basic. Maybe with secrets that others were keeping from Claudia. And maybe this entire story is set with the backdrop of a school play. There is a lot to love about Foolish Hearts, but how real it felt to me and my personal experiences was really the brightest and shiniest star.
You can really tell that Emma Mills gets fandom culture. How it is so easy for people to be negative about things that (unharmfully) make people happy. But also how sharing your happiness and love for something with someone else is truly a magical feeling sent from the higher powers. How fetishizing is totally a thing that is very serious and very real, but most of the time fandoms just want to love, support, and bring happiness to the people that bring them happiness. (Protect Park Jimin at all costs!)
Overall, this was just a really personal read to me on a few levels, but I loved it completely with the sum of my being. Also, there is epilepsy rep in this story, too, and I really loved how it was written! This book is really just a love letter to friendships, and I really do feel so soft currently. But if you are into BTS, or any musical group, I really highly recommend this one. I had the goofiest smile on my face while reading this entire book, I swear. It is for sure one of the best things I’ve read all year. And even though this review already feels like a love letter to BTS, I just hope anyone who reads this review finds happiness in things they can love wholeheartedly.
Content and Trigger Warnings: high risk childbirth, panic attacks, seizure mentions, and talk of past underage drinking.