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When I first read this story I didn't knew what I was getting myself into.
The first half follows the classic formula of boy-mets-boy, and that’s okay. This story knows what it is, knows where its from and doesn't aim to be more than a story of two normal boys growing together and realizing they’re in love. One after another in different stages of their lives. Sehyun does it first, Minjae second, but they love each other with a realism that never ceased to amaze me. The characters are portrayed in a way that somehow makes you care about them, or either hate them, they are real and make mistakes. That's hard to do even with simple stories (at first, because you'll soon realize that this story isn't simple at all) like this, but this novel has that extra, and it's amazing. I've read books from all periods of time through two years of my Literature major and the elements of these books are present in this novel. Loss, love, mental illness and friendship. Pain is an inevitable presence in this world- And the author knows it. 'Christmasyoongi' will not lie to you, they wrote a story about the real world, and there are millions of young boys like Minjae and Sehyun.
A story isn't original when it doesn't have clichés, a story is original when the author TAKES the common elements of romance novels and OWNS them. And ‘Trying to behave’ is the perfect example of my favorite type of novel: one where the characters aren't perfect and the problems don't have magic solutions. This first part just shows half of Minjae and Sehyun's journey to be together, and you know you want to read the next part. Sure it has flaws, but what work of fiction doesn't?
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