She’s Dating the Gangster is Not Your Typical Gangster Book -

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She’s Dating the Gangster is Not Your Typical Gangster Book

“Love is seeing an imperfect person perfectly,” I quote from the prologue of She’s Dating a Gangster by Bianca Bernardino; it’s what the story is about. Athena who isn’t into gangster or typical bad boy types falls in love with Kenji who drinks, smokes, goes to bars even on school days, and gets into brawls. But amidst his supposed bad boy personality, there is a lovable side of him.

She’s Dating the Gangster

Athena Dizon sounded like Athena Abigal Tizon or Bee for Kenji delos Reyes. Someone gave him the wrong number when he was trying to reach out to his ex. Athena can’t shove away the persistent texter so she pretended to be Bee and told him to go away. Turned out they are assigned seatmates in Athena’s new school. She just transferred from Korea with her brothers and bestfriend Sara, who became friends with Jigs, Kirby and his twin Grace who were all friends with Kenji. The latter made Athena pay for what she did by making her his pretend GF in the quest to make his Bee jealous and eventually win her back from Lucas.

The supposed pretend game ended up making them real lovers but a twist in fate made them forlorn lovers instead. Abigail with her cancer came between them twice but not until Kenji knew of Athena’s HCM. Sadly, he committed suicide after watching her farewell video a year after she died.

My Thoughts

The book wasn’t too thick so I decided to read it amongst a pile of other Pinoy novels I’ve purchased from National Book Store. It’s from Summit Books and was written in English. The back description was enticing so I added it amongst other pending to be read Filipino books. I thought the theme was rom-com like Talk Back and You’re Dead (same gangster subject) but it was actually heartbreaking. Reading about the ups and downs of the couples love story is definitely a page turner but when you reach the climax all the way to the ending, it was heart wrenching that I wished I didn’t read it at all. :( I lacked sleep thinking about it throughout the night.


If you’re not looking for a tear jerker, then this book is not for you. But if you’d like a heartwarming story, one which proves love can be forever even after death, then this is a must have in your shelf of books.

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