To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han | Book Review

I received this book for free from Publisher in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han | Book ReviewTo All The Boys I\'ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
Also by this author: Summer I Turned Pretty, It's Not Summer Without You, We'll Always Have Summer
Published by Simon and Schuster on 2014-04-15
Genres: Dating & Sex, Girls & Women, Love & Romance, Social Issues, Young Adult
Pages: 368
Format: ARC
Source: Publisher
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Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control in this heartfelt novel from the New York Times bestselling author of The Summer I Turned Pretty series.What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once? Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.

All hail Queen Jenny (can you tell I’ve been watching obnoxious amounts of Gossip Girl?). Friends, I kind of want to give Jenny Han the contemporary young adult queen crown after reading her upcoming book, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. I also want to wave my arms around and shout, LOOK AT THIS BOOK! Han basically hits all of my must haves with To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. Main character Lara Jean is awesome. There’s sister bonds. There’s a great romantic plot line. The concept is creative. The writing is superb. The pacing is perfect. There are quirks. Essentially, I began reading this new book by Jenny Han the day after it came in the mail, I had all these hopes for it, and goodness did it deliver. Now, go forth and add this to your TBR list, come back and listen to me tell you why it is the best ever.

Lara Jean has this quirk. When she has a massive all consuming crush on a boy, she writes him a love letter. The letter acts as an exorcism and after she’s done, she is over it. She then seals the letter in an envelope, addresses it, stamps it, and hand delivers it to this vintage teal hat box that her mother gave her. One day, the letters mysteriously all get mailed and Lara Jean’s love life kind of explodes. That’s just the premise of To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before, there’s more to Han’s plot though. Lara Jean is the middle sister, part of a unit called the Song girls, as she and her sisters share the same middle name, Song, for the maiden name of their deceased mother. The three are tightly knit. There’s Margo, the oldest, and Kitty, youngest. Here’s Lara Jean’s life situation, her dad is always busy at the hospital, as he is an OBGYN. Her sister Margo is about to move away to Scotland for college and Lara Jean will have to adjust, as Margo is the family manager. Lara Jean believes she is in love with Margo’s boyfriend, Josh. OH YEAH and she fakes a relationship with this guy, Peter Kavinsky, to make his ex Gen jealous and also to make Josh jealous. AND THERE IS STILL MORE, but there’s no sense in me telling you when I know you want to read To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before yourself and discover each gem.

Reader friends, I think that Lara Jean is the quintessential middle child. She’s a bit vulnerable and unsure of herself. She is quiet and kind of shy. She has few friends, but those friends she does have are awesome (ahem, Chris). Lara Jean is not confident enough to go after Josh, and thus she misses her chance with him. What I am saying is that at the beginning of the book, Jenny Han gives her a lot of space to grow and grow she does. I won’t tell you how Lara Jean changes, but just know that I liked how she was developed. Aside from this, cool things about Lara Jean: she loves baking, she has a quirky sense of fashion, she is incredibly close with her two sisters.

More special than the romance is the family relationships portrayed in To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before. Listen, if you are a sucker for sister books, you will LOVE THIS, just LOVE THIS. In fact, if you have a sister, buy her this book when it comes out. She’ll thank you for it because she better be awesome if she’s related to you. Lara Jean’s role within her family and with her sisters is front and center with this book. I loved seeing Lara Jean fight with Kitty and then try to make it up to her with Snickerdoodles. I loved seeing Lara Jean miss Margo desperately. I loved seeing her try to keep the family functioning in Margo’s absence, even when she forgets to cook and designates a new pizza night, ha ha. I just really felt the closeness between the three sisters to be quite special to read about. Also, when you read this you are going to find yourself rooting for Kitty to get a puppy, FYI. Just going to put that out there so you are ready.

ALSO SO YOU ARE READY, THERE WILL BE SWOONS. Like, not over the top big love gesture swoons. Not even close, but the kind of average, ordinary, aww what a sweet moment swoon. The kind that is perfect for contemporary books. My favorite ship in this book came totally unexpectedly. I am not going to lie to you all, I was prepared to ship Lara Jean with Josh, even though he is her sister’s boyfriend, awful I know. BUT THEN. Lara Jean has this fake relationship with Peter Kavinsky and you guys. He’s classically good looking, he’s a jock, he’s not bookish in the least, he’s arrogant. He’s exactly the kind of character who you would think would be the douchebag boyfriend. Turns out there’s something beneath the surface and as he gets to know Lara and as their scheme plays out,I couldn’t help but hope it would take a turn in a more REAL, romantic direction. I won’t tell you what happens, just, ahhhhh know that I am on pins and needles for you to read, so that we can discuss our feels of course.

About April (Books&Wine)

April is 28 years old and created Good Books And Good Wine. She works for a non-profit. In her free time she can be found reading, working out, or eating junk food. She often wears her sunglasses at night.

Comments

  1. Eeep! This is just what I was hoping to hear. It sounds perfect. Onto the TBR it goes!
    Alice Atorly recently posted..Cover Crave Alert: Strange and Ever After, from Susan DennardMy Profile

  2. Fantastic review! You have me so excited for this one now. I can’t wait to get my hands on a copy. Han’s Summer series is my all-time favorite contemporary series, so I am glad to hear this book didn’t disappoint. I also had no idea that this book dealt with family relationships….glad to hear it…we need more of that in YA.
    christina recently posted..Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Will Make You CryMy Profile

  3. Just wanted to say that I love the new formatting on reviews! You will have to explain how to do it to me! 🙂
    Cassie Conant recently posted..To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han | Book ReviewMy Profile

  4. And to think I was excited to read this book before reading this review, I didnt’ know what excitement was back then! lol. I’m going to have to buy this one as soon as it comes out. Which isn’t too far away. Maybe I’ll get it for my vacation read. I’m looking for an amazing book to read while we cruise. Aubrey will be playing in the sponge bob water park and you bet my ass will be in a lounge chair will my kindle. lol.

    I loved the Summer Series by Jenny Han so I know that woman can write! I’m excited for the sister bonding. I don’t have a sister. So I like to read books and pretend I do sometimes. :o)

    So glad this one lived up to your expectations. :0)

    (oh and off subject, I didn’t tell you personally yet, but I’m now reviewing at the Starry Eyed Revue. Keeping up with a blog by myself was just too much. :o) I love it and Jen is an awesome co blogger)
    April recently posted..Review: Vengeance by Megan MirandaMy Profile

    • Glad to bring your excitement up to 11, ha ha.

      YES, make this your vacation read, it’s soooooo good and perfect for reading while relaxing.

      I need to read the rest of the Summer series like right now.

      I am glad to hear you are at the Starry Eyed Revue, Jen is cool.

  5. Amazing review! I am so so excited for this book! I’m glad it lived up to expectations and I’m looking forward to reading it for myself 🙂
    Andrea @ Bookish recently posted..Top Ten Tuesday: Books that will make your cryMy Profile

  6. Great review! This is on my list of most anticipated books of 2014!
    Your review just added to my excitement 🙂

  7. Ah, my expectations may have risen after reading your lovely review. I was already excited but now? O__o I’ve already preordered this one and can’t wait for its arrival – or for it to release, for that matter! It’s been a while since I’ve read a contemporary by Jenny Han. Oh, how I’ve missed it.

  8. Hah, love this! I absolutely adore Jenny Han and I was really wondering about this novel. It’s always scary starting a completely new book/series by an author you love, because what if it’s not nearly as good as her previous works? You totally convinced me that it’s worth a read. Thanks for the review.

    I totally love your funny, gushy review style, by the way!
    Lefty recently posted..Lefty’s Lowdown: Crash Into You by Katie McGarryMy Profile

    • Right? It is terrifying, you never know if it’s going to be the best ever or one of those fluke books that are terrible.

      THIS ONE IS SO TOTALLY WORTH A READ.

      Thank you! Thank you! I just open up WordPress and kind of gush out all the words ha ha.

  9. I am seriously, seriously, SERIOUSLY excited for To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before! I’ve been looking forward to it ever since I first heard about it. To see that you enjoyed it so much definitely has me even more antsy to have a copy in my hands! And to know that it combines self-growth, sisterhood and romance into a story so well is even better. Thanks for making me even MORE excited about this one!
    Alexa S. recently posted..Something Real – Heather Demetrios (Review)My Profile

    • The self-growth and sisterhood and romance are so aces in this book. Like it brings the story up to the next level, so to speak.

      I hope you are able to get your hands on a copy soon. 🙂

  10. I’m dying to get my hands on this book. And your review is wonderful! I cannot wait to read this for myself.
    Chrystal @ Snowdrop Dreams of Books recently posted..Personal Reading Challenge: Ferbuary 2014My Profile

  11. I love seeing you flail over a good contemp!

  12. Glad you loved it! I’m so excited for this one!!!
    Heidi @ YA Bibliophile recently posted..CressMy Profile

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