Review: TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE by Jenny Han

to all the boys i've loved beforeTitle: To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before
Author: Jenny Han
Publication Date: April 15, 2014
Buy Links: Amazon | B & NTBD | Kobo

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.

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My Review:

 

The story in a nutshell:

Lara Jean has the biggest of all dilemmas in her teenage life. She had written five love letters to all the boys she’s loved before. Granted, it wasn’t the wisest of her to have signed, labeled, and addressed them but she did keep them in a box in her room, intended to never be seen by anyone alive, let alone the five boys to whom they are addressed to. But by some twist of fate, said letters did get sent out much to her horror and embarrassment. And now she has a lot of ‘pasts’ to overcome and the good side of it is that she might just find a whole new future for herself.

 

What worked for me?

I seriously love the heroine. I love her voice and it was great to hear the story from her point of view.

I love that as much as it is about Lara Jean’s love story, this book is also about sisterhood and what it means to be a sister. I only have half-sisters and we’re not that close so it was great to have this sisters-dynamic embedded in this story.

I actually pictured the plot differently than what was actually told in the book since you have this set-up of the five love letters getting mailed when they weren’t supposed to be and you can’t help but think of all the potential things that can happen around that really embarrassingly painful (for the heroine not for the readers) but wonderful premise. But aside from a slight disappointment in the beginning, I was completely on board the rest of the way. I wanted to go wherever Jenny Han decides to take the story. And by the middle and towards the end, I was pleasantly surprised at the turns that the story were taking.

 

What did not work for me?

I can’t believe I have began to dislike Josh. I am not sure if Jenny Han wrote him this way or it’s just a personal taste type of issue. Yes, he has his redeeming qualities but towards the end, I wanted to shake him. But I guess, future conflicts have to take root and why not start on the first book, right?

 

My over-all take on it?

This was a solid first book read for me, my first Jenny Han and certainly not my last. Jenny Han says she’s now working on Book 2 titled, “P.S. I Still Love You”, and no matter how ambiguous that title might be because, again, of all the potential things or people that that can refer to, all I can say is that I can’t wait for it to be released and please, please, be very good too. ❤

 

My rating:

 4 stars

 

 

About the Author:

jenny hanJenny Han (Han like Han Solo, not Han like handwas born and raised in Richmond, Virginia. She went to college at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (Go Heels!) and she went on to graduate school at the New School in New York City, where she received her MFA in Writing for Children. She lives in Brooklyn.
Favorite dessert: Passion Fruit anything
Favorite superhero: Buffy the Vampire Slayer
Favorite time of day: 8:00pm
Favorite article of clothing: knee socks
Favorite book: I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith
Favorite fictional father: Atticus Finch 
If I could have any job,
 I would pick Oprah’s best friend or Santa’s helper. Also, nail polish namer, TV writer, White House party planner, ice cream tester.
If I was a fruit, I would be a peach.
If I could have any superpower, I would pick the power of charm.
Weaknesses include:cookbooks, boys with dimples, biscuits with butter and jam, an afternoon nap, popcorn at the movies.Special talents/abilities include: dialogue from the movie Clueless, the perfect brownie, board games, neat handwriting, 90s song lyrics, nicknaming people and stuffed animals.

Connect with Jenny Han:

Website  |  Twitter  |  Facebook  |  Tumbler

 

 

 

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