To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

Thursday, December 10, 2015

To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Publication Date: April 15, 2014
Pages: 368
Source: purchased
Buy It: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository
Lara Jean 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 can pour out her heart and soul and say 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. --Goodreads
Lara Jean writes love letters, not to confess her love to boys but to say goodbye.  It is a sort of parting letter that she will never send out, a letter to herself to get over the boy she currently loves.  She has loved five boys in total.  When the letters mysteriously get sent out, Lara Jean has to face the five boys, including Josh—the boy she currently loves.  To get him off the trail, Lara Jean pretends to have a relationship with another boy who also received a letter.  However, pretending to love him only helps in rekindling the emotions she used to feel for him.

Lara Jean is the person I want to be when I grow up.  That’s not necessarily true but she has the best wardrobe any girl could want.  Plus she makes all types of desserts with every meal.  There were two things I was absolutely positive while reading.  One: Jenny Han—with the gorgeous descriptions of Lara Jean’s wardrobe—inspired me to go on a small shopping spree.  Two: I will never write a parting love letter about this book because I want to stay loving it for a very long time.

To All the Boys was gorgeously thought-out.  It was a contemporary romance that seems different than all the rest: more original, more realistic.  This book may focus on these letters that were sent out but through that event, readers are introduced to every crevice of Lara Jean’s life, including her family life.  A lot of contemporaries I read are so focused on the romance that they completely forget that after school, teens go home and interact with their family.  It shouldn’t be romance all the time.  With To All the Boys, Jenny Han brought in this family that was so together, so real, and so amazing.  Jane Austen features close sister relationships within her writing, both with Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice.  Jenny Han created similar relationships within the novel and it creates a beautiful cast of characters in Lara Jean’s life.  These characters are far from perfect but that is what makes them so realistic.  These three sisters will certainly put a smile on your face.

Han also keeps readers on their toes.  With To All the Boys, Lara Jean changes her mind, goes back and forth, and depicts a teen who can’t make up their mind.  Han creates Lara Jean to make her incredibly relatable—what teen absolutely knows exactly what they want?  She is definitely a realistic character who will have you eagerly awaiting the sequel (which is currently in stores now) just to listen to her story and what she will do next.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before takes you on a new type of romance, starting with goodbye and ending with hello.  Lara Jean will easily become your favorite protagonist.  Jenny Han has certainly begun a stunning new series.

P.S. I Still Love You (5/26/15): TBA

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