book review

Permanent Record | Mary H.K. Choi


After a year of college, Pablo is working at his local twenty-four-hour deli, selling overpriced snacks to brownstone yuppies. He’s dodging calls from the student loan office and he has no idea what his next move is.

Leanna Smart’s life so far has been nothing but success. Age eight: Disney Mouseketeer; Age fifteen: first #1 single on the US pop chart; Age seventeen, *tenth* #1 single; and now, at Age nineteen…life is a queasy blur of private planes, weird hotel rooms, and strangers asking for selfies on the street.

When Leanna and Pab randomly meet at 4:00 a.m. in the middle of a snowstorm in Brooklyn, they both know they can’t be together forever. So, they keep things on the down-low and off Instagram for as long as they can. But it takes about three seconds before the world finds out…


After reading Mary H.K. Choi’s novel Emergency Contact, as soon as i saw that she was releasing Permanent Record, i knew it was something i wanted to read.

Permanent record follows the story of Pablo, a school drop out working at a corner store/bodega. In walks childhood star Leanna Smart, they meet, and life as Pablo knows it, changes.

I thought that we would see more of a dual POV, but Permanent Record is mainly told from Pablo’s POV, which i didn’t mind, but i would have liked something more from Leanna’s POV.

Both Pablo and Leanna have struggled, each in their own way, whether it was because of their cultural backgrounds, jobs, social status and i suppose wanting to belong somewhere.

I feel that they both bonded over the struggles they have both been through, and were able to find love and happiness with each other, and were also able to be completely themselves, which i’ll admit, i’m a sucker for that type of love!

Choi certainly didn’t disappoint with this one and i’ll definitely be reading what she creates next!

I’ve given Permanent Record 4/5 stars.

Thank you to Hachette/Date a book for sending me a copy of Permanent Record for review,

Book info

Publisher: Hachette Australia

Format type: Paperback

Release date: October 29th 2019

ISBN: 9780349003450

RRP: $18.99AUD


Until next time,

Happy reading!

Lizz xx

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