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

SynopsisWhat if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once? 

Sixteen-year-old 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.

Review: I'm going to talk about the book and the film in this review. I'm just going to come out and say that I heard a lot of people talk about how annoying and immature Lara Jean sounded when they read this book. I disagree. I found her to be wistful, but also grounded. She has an idea of love that is a bit naive, but she also wasn't exposed to many relationships in her life. Her mom died when she was young and the only major relationship she was even around was her sister and Josh. That's not even a great example of a relationship because of how Josh was a fixture within her own family. 

As much as I hate the "friends to lovers" trope, I felt this was done rather well in To All the Boys I've Loved Before. Jenny took the time to really show how Josh was a real part of the Song girls' lives. He felt necessary and loving him was an understandable part of the story. This also did a great job with the fake dating trope. It seemed like there were distinct moments when Peter stopped pretending to date Lara Jean and legitimately wanted it to become a reality. 

As far as the film goes, I thought it was a solid adaptation. I wish they kept my favorite scene which is when Peter goes to get the donuts Lara Jean likes for the ski trip. They kind of do that when he gets the Korean yogurt, but part of me wishes they kept the donut aspect. Maybe it's because I like donuts more than yogurt. That was the only thing they changed that I wish they hadn't. I felt like the movie sped up the relationship between Peter and Lara Jean, so it didn't feel as genuine when they started to actually have feelings for each other. Like I said, a solid adaptation that I will definitely rewatch again and again.

4 howls