The Donut Trap by Julie Tieu | ARC Review


The Donut Trap by Julie Tieu

The Donut Trap by Julie Tieu
Publisher: Avon
Publication Date: November 9th, 2021
Genre: New Adult, Romance. Contemporary
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Source: Thank you Times Read for the review copy in return for an honest review
Rating: 3.5


Julie Tieu sparkles in this debut romantic comedy, which is charmingly reminiscent of the TV show Kim’s Convenience and Frankly in Love by David Yoon, about a young woman who feels caught in the life her parents have made for her until she falls in love and finds a way out of the donut trap.

Jasmine Tran has landed herself behind bars—maple bars that is. With no boyfriend or job prospects, Jasmine returns home to work at her parents’ donut shop. Jasmine quickly loses herself in a cyclical routine of donuts, Netflix, and sleep. She wants to break free from her daily grind, but when a hike in rent threatens the survival of their shop, her parents rely on her more than ever.

Help comes in the form of an old college crush, Alex Lai. Not only is he successful and easy on the eyes, to her parents’ delight, he’s also Chinese. He’s everything she should wish for, until a disastrous dinner reveals Alex isn’t as perfect as she thinks. Worse, he doesn’t think she’s perfect either.

With both sets of parents against their relationship, a family legacy about to shut down, and the reappearance of an old high school flame, Jasmine must scheme to find a solution that satisfies her family’s expectations and can get her out of the donut trap once and for all.


Uuuu, when I saw the word DONUT, immediately, I'm so up for this book. I love donuts. Like a lot. 

The story follows with Jasmine Tran after graduating, she is back to her parent's house and works at a Donut shop together with her parents. She struggles a lot during her studies. She took premed but it was too overwhelming for her to handle that she ended up changing her course. Now, she has graduated she found it is hard to land a job. Her parents worried she hasn't found a boyfriend that they keep on asking about it eventually she reconnected with the 'window guy', the guy who she has a crush on.

The Donut Trap is a story that centered on family, life after graduating, and how it is a struggle to land a job, friendship, and love. It is a delightful read and a relatable one. The part where Jasmine struggles to find a job and the expectation from family is really a right hit on me. The need to fulfill our parents' expectations is really a pressure to one especially when you are the firstborn in the family. So, when Jasmine has an argument with her parents, I can't help but ugly crying about that. Reading that makes me wish that in the past, I could tell what I feel throughout my studies and how it is to land a job to my parents. I guess lack of communication is one of the factors that contribute to this matter.

Anyhow, on the good part when Jasmine reconnected back with her secret crush whom she met when she worked at the ticketing counter that was SO cute! I love their cute banter but their short breakup felt a bit weird and somehow their relationship feels kind of awkward and a bit too rushed.

Overall, The Donut Trap is a cute, sweet, relatable, and heartrending read. Although, I don't think this book should be categorized as a romantic comedy because it is centered more on the family and emotional journey of Jasmine Tran's life. I do find this an enjoyable reading.