[Review] To all the Boys i’ve loved before by Jenny Han

This Book honestly surprised me. I thought it would be cute and predictable and yes, it was all that, but i also loved it so much! Way more than i Imagined.

The Book was published in 2014 with 355 pages and thats what it is about:

What 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. (Source: simonandshuster.com)

The Characters

There are quite a few Characters in this Book, but more surprisingly to me, i liked all of them more or less. First, we have the Main Character Lara Jean, who is a 16 Year old half-korean, half-caucasian School Girl. The Story is told from her perspective and what i loved most about her was how relatable and just real she felt. She is not one of those clumsy Girls who think they are ugly, but are so beautiful and has five Boys after her. She never had a Boyfriend before, she is the middle Girl in her Family, that never had as much Responsibilty, because her older Sister Margot took over the Role of a Mum. She was a Love with a Guy, who was in a Relationsship and she is scared of a few Things. I instantly liked her.

Along with Lara Jean are her Sisters. Margot and the little nine year old sister Kitty. Margot is a very interesting character, taking on the Mum Role with too much responsibilty and being the catalyst to a new Family Dynamic, when she leaves for Scotland. Kitty just rocks! In so many ways. Shes not only the cliche of the cute little sister, she knows what she wants and how to get it. She can be as fierce as nice and mostly has the best one liners in the book.

The Family was really the Highlight to me. The sisterly bond is shown so beautifully, as much heartfelt as funny, so realistic and with so much Depth and History, i loved it. To me, this Book isnt only about Love as in a romantic Love, but also about one the biggest Loves we can already be born into: Family.

The Boys are pretty great too. Josh lacks a bit in charactization as the Book goes on, but Peter was as cute as the whole Book.

Chris is the only Character is liked less because she doesnt add too much to the Story besides being Lara Jeans Friend and she represents the typiscal cliche of Women, who are slut shamed or said to be „edgy“ with the whole package: Alcohol, dyed Hair, much Sex.

The Plot

Yes, the Book is predictable. But was it fun to read anyway? Did i nearly read it in one Day? Was it incredible cute all the way? Yes, yes, yes. The nice Thing is, that even though there are some cliches, the Book is really better than i thought it would be. Because there are many through Bombs about Teenagers, about Family, Society and Relationsships. The Love Story is believable, because it is developed organically and on a more emotional than physical Level at first. I liked that.

The Writing

I also read the Book in about a Day because Jenny Hans Writing is so easy to read without being too superficial. There are still many lines i marked because i liked them or they were rather meaningful. She wrote an honest Young Adult Book, that is so realistic and touches many Topics. What i loved was how inbetween Lines or directly, Jenny Hans doesnt just forget the korean Background of the Sisters, but actually mentions it from time to time. The Problems, the Traditions and Expectations that come with it and that was very interesting to read.

Conclusion

It was such a cute Young Adult Book with Romance, but at the same Time very honest thoughts and Subplots. Jenny Han wrote with so much more Fun and Depth than i expected and i loved it. It was a quick read, that i wont forget as quick. As far as of now, i dont know why it is a Trilogy, but Lara Jeans Storyline is far from over and im very excited to pick up Book two.

Favourite Quote

„When someone’s been gone a long time, at first you save up all the things you want to tell them. […] But it’s like trying to hold on to a fistful of sand: all the little bits slip out of your hands, and then you’re just clutching air and grit.“ (p.294)

 


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