Book Reviews

Book Review: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved BeforePublished: April 15th 2014 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers.

Format: Kindle Edition; 288 pages.

Source: Amazon.

Goodreads Summary: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is the story of Lara Jean, who has never openly admitted her crushes, but instead wrote each boy a letter about how she felt, sealed it, and hid it in a box under her bed. But one day Lara Jean discovers that somehow her secret box of letters has been mailed, causing all her crushes from her past to confront her about the letters: her first kiss, the boy from summer camp, even her sister’s ex-boyfriend, Josh. As she learns to deal with her past loves face to face, Lara Jean discovers that something good may come out of these letters after all.

Thoughts: Since summer officially began for me two weeks ago, I thought I’d start it off with a contemporary novel. I ended up enjoying this book a lot more than I thought I would. I wouldn’t call the plot heavy or complex but the story was really cute. Lara Jean is a junior in High School and she panics when she finds out that her love letters have been sent out. I’ve never read a book that made me more embarrassed for a character than this one. Wow! When I first started reading this I thought it was going to be a book about dealing with the consequences after these letters were sent out, but instead this is more of a coming of age story following Lara Jean as she navigates the ups and downs of family, school, and love.

My favorite aspect of the novel was the attention the author placed on family and the relationship between sisters. More specifically the Song Sisters. Lara, Margot, and Kitty had a realistic relationship and the way they took care of each other while pushing each others buttons at the same time was great. I also appreciated that Lara Jean’s father played a role in the story and was not nowhere to be seen. I hate when novels dismiss the parents entirely. They’re important too. Jenny Han has created one of my favorite book families and I also love that she created a biracial Korean-American protagonist. We definitely need more diversity in YA literature.

Now let’s talk about Peter Kavinsky. His relationship with Lara Jean was everything you’d expect. It was light-hearted, sweet, and full of angst. He’s your typical handsome, and popular classmate. At times I loved him for the things he did, but also hated him at the same time. He is so flawed, but readers must remember that he’s only 17. He’s not going to be perfect, although a lot of people seem to think so. Regardless of how frustrated I was with his character sometimes, I was still rooting for him and Lara Jean.

This book was a cute contemporary, but I still had some problems with it. I know that Lara Jean is a High School student, but I hated that she was so insecure about herself. It seemed like every couple of pages she would say how she wasn’t good enough and that drove me crazy. “No, Lara Jean you are!! Really.” I get that some girls in High School have trouble with their image and how they’re being perceived by others, but every time Lara Jean doubted herself I wanted to yell at her.

Overall, this book was a fun and light read. It wasn’t amazing, but If you’re looking for another contemporary to fill your days then To All the Boys I’ve loved before is worth it. The sequel P.S I Still Love You is already out and I do plan on reading it soon. Also, I wanted to share this short fan adaptation of the book with you. It’s superbly done.

Please share your thoughts.



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