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Mary H.K. Choi Books In Order

Publication Order of Standalone Novels

Emergency Contact (2018) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle
Permanent Record (2019) Hardcover  Paperback  Kindle

Mary H.K. Choi is a renowned Korean-American writer, journalist, and editor. She is well known for writing young adult, romance, fiction, contemporary, mystery, and fantasy stories; and is particularly famous for writing the 2018 young adult book called Emergency Contact. Choi has written all her books as standalone novels, which are popular in all parts of the world. In addition to being an author, Choi is employed at HBO as a culture correspondent on the show called Vice News Tonight. Previously, she has worked as a freelance writer and as a columnist at Allure and Wired magazines. Author Choi was born as Mary Hyun Kyung Choi in Seoul, South Korea. Her family moved to Hong Kong when she was less than one-year-old. Choi lived in Hong Kong until the age of 14, after which she migrated to Texas has been living there since then. She completed her schooling from a public high school based in San Antonio and then went to college at Texas University in Austin.

Choi has obtained a degree in Apparel and Textile. Following her graduation, Choi moved to New York in 2002. She landed her first job at Mass Appeal magazine in the post of an editorial intern immediately after moving to New York. Later, she was promoted to the position of an editor in the same company. After this, Choi worked at Hip Hop Soul and XXL before she became Missbehave’s founding editor-in-chief, which is an alternative magazine specifically for young women based in Brooklyn. While she was employed at XXL, Choi used to publish her work as Mary Choi and later started using her Korean name’s initials. Author Choi has drawn a lot of attention for her reporting work and writing essays on a variety of topics such as social media’s use by teens, music, fashion, life as an immigrant, and her relationship with her mother.

A few other magazines that she has worked for include GQ, The Atlantic, The Fader, The NY Times, Billboard, and New York. She has also served as the executive producer of a documentary called House of Style in 2012. In 2013, Choi worked as a supervising producer and then as the head writer of a live news program for Participant Media called Take Part Live. Now, she continues working for HBO and hosts a podcast called Hey Cool Job!, every month, in which she asks questions to people related to their jobs and the decisions they made to become what they are now. As a writer, Choi has worked for Marvel Comics to write Lady Deadpool and Shanna the She-Devil. She has also contributed a couple of anthologies for the Vertigo Comics.

Choi published an essay collection in 2014 known as Oh, Never Mind in which she has described her decision to move out of New York. When numerous editors rejected to edit this collection for its sales prospects, she decided to publish it as a Kindle book when Amazon offered her to retain the ownership of copyright as well as the right to decide the collection’s price. Choi has collaborated with DJ Khaled for writing his book called The Keys. In 2018, Choi made her debut in the field of publishing when she released her first book Emergency Contact. She has described this novel as a part of inspiration from the novel Forever by Judy Blume. The story described in the book is about a love story through text messages. It features the primary characters as Penny and Sam. Author Choi has a brother named Michael Choi, who works as an artist at DC and Marvel. After living in New York until 2014, she moved to Los Angeles. Choi is able to speak four languages.

The debut book written by author Mary H.K. Choi is entitled ‘Emergency Contact’. It was released by Simon & Schuster in 2018. Choi has featured the essential characters in this novel as Penelope ‘Penny’ Lee, Jude Lange, Samuel ‘Sam’ Becker, Celeste Yoon, Lorraine Masterson, and Mallory Sloane. The story takes place in Austin, Texas, United States. Initially, it is shown that Penny Lee considered high school as totally nonevent. She obtained good grades and had okay friends. Penny also managed to get a boyfriend, but he doesn’t seem to have an interest in knowing about her. Later, she takes up a writing course in college and moves to Austin. After moving to Austin to join the college, Penny seems to have left her former life behind. Sam is introduced as a usual boy. He has financial and emotional problems and experiences panic attacks.

Sam works at a local cafe in Austin and sleeps on the floor of its storage room. He thinks that the current phase of his life is a test he has to grow through before he becomes a successful film director. While he is hopeful of achieving his dream, Sam also feels let down at his current miserable situation. When Sam Becker and Penny Lee come across each other for the first time, it is less of a cute interaction and more of an awkward meeting. Penny sees Sam having a panic attack and comes to his help. They exchange phone numbers and Penny asks him to stay in touch with her and ask for help whenever he needs. Later, they get involved with each other so much via text messages that they do not realize when they fell in love with one another. Penny Lee and Sam Becker reach a situation where they are digitally inseparable and share their secret dreams, deepest anxieties, likes and dislikes, etc.

Another exciting novel written by Choi is called ‘Permanent Record’. It was also published by Simon & Schuster in 2019. The central characters depicted in this book include Leanna Smart and Pablo Neruda Rind. Initially, Pablo is shown working at a 24-hour local deli after dropping out of college. He keeps dodging calls from his creditors, who have provided him financial help for his college studies. Pablo has no idea about how he is going to repay the loan and keeps worrying while selling snacks at the deli. On the other hand, Leanna Smart has been living a rather successful life. She has grown into a celebrity pop star at just nineteen years of age and has people following her everywhere she goes. When Pablo and Leanna have a random meeting at 4 in the morning while being stuck in a snowstorm, they know that their lives are totally different and they can’t live with each other forever. So, none of them tries too hard and they just share jokes. However, they also can’t ignore the attraction and decide to take a leap that sets them on a spontaneous, emotional, and magical journey. This novel is poignant, funny, a bit ridiculous, and thought-provoking.

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