Stephan Lee is a YA enthusiast, ardent K-pop fan, and journalist. He currently works as Senior Editor at Bustle after a five-year stretch covering books and movies at Entertainment Weekly. At EW, he traveled to Seoul for three weeks to write a feature about Korean entertainment’s world domination, interviewing K-pop idols Ailee, Tablo, and Tiffany Young of Girls Generation.
In K-pop Confidential (Point) Lee introduce us to Candace Park. For most of her life, she has been playing the role of the quiet Korean girl who takes all AP classes, helps her parents at their dry cleaner, and keeps her passion for singing and her obsession with SLK, K-pop’s top boyband, to herself. She can really sing, but she doesn’t see how a regular girl like her could possibly become one of those K-pop goddesses she sees on YouTube. But Candace secretly enters a global audition held by SLK’s music label and gets a coveted spot in their trainee program. Convincing her strict parents to let her to go is all but impossible, but then things get difficult. She must perfect her performance skills to within an inch of her life, learn to speak Korean fluently, and navigate the complex hierarchies of her fellow trainees, all while following the strict rules of the industry. Rule number one? NO DATING. Is a spot in the most hyped K-pop girl group of all time really worth risking her friendships, her future, and everything she believes in?