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  • [K-12] NJHS Women's Health Access Dress Down Day on May 29th.
  • SKAC HS Soccer 7's @ISB on May 23rd.
  • SKAC MS Basketball Finals @ISB/BFS on May 22nd.
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  • KISAC MS Boys Basketball Tournament @KISJ on May 16th-18th.
  • Don't forget your spirit shirts on Friday.
The Student News Site of Daegu International School

Jets Flyover

The Student News Site of Daegu International School

Jets Flyover

CoHo controversies: a legal battle opens eyes to toxic tropes

How a New York Times bestseller blew up in smoke
Colleen+Hoover%2C+the+best-selling+author+of+It+Ends+With+Us%2C+faces+extreme+backlash+for+her+controversial+actions.+Jio+Kim%2C+an+ex-fan+of+the+writer%2C+returns+to+examine+the+controversies.+
Olivia Park
Colleen Hoover, the best-selling author of “It Ends With Us,” faces extreme backlash for her controversial actions. Jio Kim, an ex-fan of the writer, returns to examine the controversies.

*Disclaimer: The following article includes mentions of sexual assault. We advise younger readers to proceed with caution.*

Last year, Colleen Hoover(CoHo) – an author who instantly rose to stardom after her mega-hit novel “It Ends With Us” – made headlines for her controversial and thoughtless actions. The first wave of shock hit fans when news leaked that Colleen Hoover’s eldest son Levi Hoover sexually assaulted a minor. The author shattered fans’ hearts again when she took no responsibility for his actions and only attempted to salvage her fame. The Jets Flyover reviewed her work in March, and came back with a follow-up on the accusations surrounding Hoover, her son, and the future of her career. 

Sexual assault charges against Levi Hoover 

When Hoover started her climb to fame on social media outlets, she brought her son along into the spotlight. Many fans pictured Levi Hoover as the ideal man in CoHo’s books – a sweet, kindhearted romantic. They also assumed that she educated her son enough to follow some of the most basic rules of consent. But on Feb. 12, 2022, a 17-year-old high school girl (@theonottlovebot on X) shattered this fantasy with her testimony: a charge of sexual assault against Levi Hoover. 

This brought a new level of interest from the public, fans and strangers alike. After the confirmation of the allegation, the news went crazy and many held their breath in anticipation of Colleen Hoover’s response. No one expected her to completely contradict her virtuous persona and unveil her selfishness with her lack of apologies on behalf of her son. 

The victim contacted Colleen about the offense with proof of her friendship with her son, but she only received a cold shoulder and a block. The author’s blind eye to this serious accusation devastated numerous fans, especially because her books deal with topics such as sexual assault.

Some may ask: Why should Colleen Hoover receive hate when she has no direct involvement? CoHo’s books resonate with many readers because of the toxic relationship tropes that end with the main protagonist’s triumph. While readers supported the characters who found their happily ever after, what kind of category does her son fall into? He completely missed the mark for Atlas, the ever-pure protagonist, and in fact resembles Ryle, the villain. 

In the novel “It Ends With Us,” Lily decides to date Ryle, and she gets abused in the process. Lily ends up spilling the beans to her best friend/Ryle’s sister, Alyssia, who confesses that while she loves her brother and would do anything to protect him, she knows that Ryle made a wrong choice and no one deserves to go through abuse. Alyssia frankly gave Lily the ultimatum of a break up with her brother.

While Lily escapes her toxic relationship in the story, CoHo’s actions show nothing of the messages she delivers in her books. CoHo neither announced that she wants distance from her son nor did she say that she feels sorry for what he did. Instead, she forgives her son as if nothing happened and as if no consequences exist for his actions. On Instagram, she continues to post pictures with her son and captions of how she cares and loves him while all the readers rage inside. 

The news also broke my heart. As a 14-year-old, I fantasized about romance stories in my head and loved reading the characters, especially Colleen Hoover’s signature “I will give you the stars” male protagonist and the “helplessly in love” lead female character. But after this? Ouch. Reality hit me hard like a brick. 

Color the abuse with a book and movie 

But the story doesn’t end here. Just when the rumors seemed to die down, Hoover decided it was the perfect time to win back her fame with the “It Ends With Us” movie, originally planned to hit the box theaters in early 2024. Even after the crime her eldest son committed, some loyal fans still remained excited for the launch of her film. But the hype died shortly after Hoover cast the actors. The whole fandom started to nitpick every single detail of the film from the actors to costume ideas saying it didn’t fit the “vibe” the book delivers. 

Furthermore, CoHo worked behind the scenes to publish a coloring book. Problems arose when fans figured out her ongoing attempts to turn the contents of one of her books that deal with mature topics into a children’s play toy. Her plans to change the grave topic into cute coloring pages screamed inappropriate. She contradicted the core of her books and heavy issues like manipulation, tragedy, heartbreak, and toxic relationships. At this, netizens started to backlash against Hoover for her immoral actions. Some gossip websites plastered “Colleen Hoover and her off-line self” all over their front pages and the harsh criticism spread to her writing like wildfire.

Due to her thoughtless actions and the hate that followed suit, Hoover’s coloring book got canceled, and the movie shoot for “It Ends with Us” came to a halt. Only recently has Colleen Hoover begun to dish out one late apology after another. 

When I first reviewed “It Starts With Us” on the Jets Flyover, I didn’t know any of this background information, and I praised the author without limit. Although it becomes difficult to separate the book from the author, we readers do try. Contrary to my expectations that she walked away from the traumatic experiences detailed in her books as a mature individual, Hoover exposed the twisted side of herself through the controversies surrounding her son and her coloring book. 

Once upon a time, I adored Colleen Hoover and her work. But these days, her actions overshadow the fantasy of a perfect love her books used to preach. CoHo’s sordid actions galvanized fans to take conscious steps in what they intake from authors, as actions speak louder than words.

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About the Contributors
Jio Kim
Jio Kim, Writer
Jio Kim returns to the Jets Flyover writing team for a second year. She loves reading and almost anything that has to do with writing. With two strong leadership positions this year, Jio directs student council and NJHS. Cooperation and collaboration are her strong suits. Through Jets Flyover, Jio wants to continue writing engaging news stories and maybe even try writing a few book reviews.
Jessica Woo
Jessica Woo, Managing Editor
A eleven year veteran at DIS, Jessica Woo returns to the Flyover staff in her junior year. As an engaged student who loves to read and write, Jessica helps other students improve and always attempts to step up as a writer herself. Founder of the Jets Broadcasting Service, she communicates and delivers informative messages to the DIS community. As much as she adores writing, Jessica deems herself a baseball-holic and attempts to watch every game if possible. 

Olivia Park
Olivia Park, Illustrator
Olivia Park, a sixth grader at DIS, rises up to middle school with a passion for digital design. This year, she hopes to design inspiring and entertaining graphics for the Flyover and craft a portfolio to become a professional designer for a company some day. In her free time, she crochets and binge-watches her favorite TV show, “Alexa and Katie.”
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    Aiden ShinNov 16, 2023 at 6:31 pm

    This “story” is quite sad and kind of unfair so it is good to know about these events so you know what’s happening in place and know background information.

    Reply