Review: Let's Talk About Love by Claire Kann

Thursday, February 15, 2018


Alice had her whole summer planned. Non-stop all-you-can-eat buffets while marathoning her favorite TV shows (best friends totally included) with the smallest dash of adulting--working at the library to pay her share of the rent. The only thing missing from her perfect plan? Her girlfriend (who ended things when Alice confessed she's asexual). Alice is done with dating--no thank you, do not pass go, stick a fork in her, done.

But then Alice meets Takumi and she can’t stop thinking about him or the rom com-grade romance feels she did not ask for (uncertainty, butterflies, and swoons, oh my!).

When her blissful summer takes an unexpected turn, and Takumi becomes her knight with a shiny library employee badge (close enough), Alice has to decide if she’s willing to risk their friendship for a love that might not be reciprocated—or understood.

I. Love. This. Book. As the description said, Let's Talk About Love is a book about an asexual, black, teenage girl. On the surface this is just another love story. The writing isn't super complex. I would have read this book in one sitting if I didn't have to stop for my book club. There are even some (I'm looking at you Kirkus) who think this is just another generic love story with a small twist.


Alice was not only asexual, she was black. Alice spent her entire life explaining and defending her right to exist in the world exactly as she was. There's a section in the book where someone mentions her new hairstyle, and she's immediately defensive because she's had so many people make back handed comments about her hair and touch it like it's a lost dog on the street (my words not hers fyi. lol). She had a "friend" who claimed that she wouldn't win a contest (a dumb contest at that) for attracting the most online dating messages because she was black and black women and Asian men are the least desired. She was also cornered by a guy who had "never been with a black girl before" and she was "Cute for a black girl". She had spent and will continue to spend the rest of her life existing as "the black girl" why in the world should she want to exist as the asexual girl too. A branch of sexuality that people don't really understand. So, for most of this book, to many people in her life, Alice is very deep in the closet.

Claire Kann has managed to write a book (and her first one at that) where the characters "blackness" doesn't completely engulf them. As a black girl, Alice has to deal with certain crap that other girl don't. Kann didn't ignore those things, as other authors might, but they didn't overshadow the story, because Alice's issue wasn't that she was black, it was that she was asexual, and her parents wanted her to be a lawyer but she didn't want to, and her best friend started to act like a jerk, and she felt abandoned and misunderstood, and her body was doing new and unusual things that she wasn't prepared for. Alice was a simply written, yet well rounded character.

I don't know Claire Kann's sexual orientation, and I don't want to know, it's none of my business. But she did a great job of showing that Alice was loving and able to love without wanting to make love. She did a great job of showing (she didn't have to tell, she showed us) readers that even though a person doesn't want to have sex, doesn't mean they aren't physically affectionate. Alice loved hugs, and snuggles, and kisses, and spooning (I don't think they spooned but I'm sure she would have), and holding hands, and  literally EVERY THING ELSE. The problem is, when you cuddle, and kiss, and hold hand, and hug, that always leads to sex. Ugh.

Clearly there are a lot of my own feeling mixed up with this review. Alice and I are the same human.

I think if I had to pick one gripe, it would be the bff, Feenie. I can't even go into it. She was so wrong. I think the way Feenie treated Alice was wrong. I almost wish Alice hadn't let Feenie get away with it, but...


Also, I seriously don't know if it's possible for an sexual person to date anyone who isn't asexual. But who wants a book to end in sadness. 

I really like this book. It's not perfect, but it's very good. This was the first book I've read with a black asexual woman. For all I know, it's the only one in the world. Honestly I don't think I've ever read any books with asexual characters. No matter what their race. I'm so glad this book exists.


  1. This book is definitely one that I enjoyed as well. I have never seen any other books with asexual characters either, so that is what makes this book so important, for sure. It will be interesting to see what Kann writes next. :)

    1. I know right!! I had never thought about books with asexual characters before and I'm a bit ashamed of myself. I hope Kann writes something new soon.

  2. This sounds amazing. I've never read a book with an asexual character, so it's great this book exists. Loved your review, I'm now even more excited to read Let's Talk About Love.

    1. It's so good. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did if you get a chance to read it.

  3. I have this one very high in my TBR because of how diverse it is. Ca't wait to read it!

    1. It very diverse which is so refreshing. I have only read one other book a black female and Asian male love interest. It was WONDERFUL. When you get a chance to read it I hope you like it.

  4. I've wanted to read his book and need to check it out. I like books about diversity.

  5. Sorry this reply too a million years, I've had some computer issues. ANYWAY, yes, please, check out this book! The copy I ordered for my library came in this week. It's worth it!


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