April 14, 2014

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

4 peanut butter brownies.

Cover Love:
Yes!  It fits the tone perfectly!

Why I Wanted to Read This:
Jenny Han is a master of contemporary romances.  I loved Shug (which is a middle grade romance) and her Summer trilogy (The Summer I Turned Pretty, It's Not Summer Without You, We'll Always Have Summer).  So of course I wanted to read this one!  Here's the synopsis from GoodReads:
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.


Romance?:  Yes!

My Thoughts:

The thing that fascinated me the most and what made for a fully developed character was the relationship between Lara Jean and her sisters.  She is the middle of three sisters.  Their mother died when they were young (their youngest sister doesn't even remember her).  This event defined their roles and relationships in their family.  When Lara Jean's oldest sister goes off to college it's up to Lara Jean to be a better big sister and the organizer of the house.  She truly comes into her own in this new role, but its so subtle in the book that you don't realize it until she is spelling it out for her older sister towards the end.  I loved this dynamic!

There are two guys for Lara Jean.  The author made them both such good guys it's hard to have a favorite.  The interesting thing is that the boys are both suspicious of each other, but I think they are truly both good guys.  They both make a few mistakes, which is perfect because they are just teenage boys.  There isn't a perfect one out there!

The romance is really secondary in this book.  Like all good coming of age stories this is about Lara Jean coming into her own.  I think we will see a much stronger Lara Jean in the second book, one who isn't afraid of giving her letters to the boy she loves!

To Sum Up:  I will read any contemporary teen romance Jenny Han writes!

ARC requested and received from Simon & Schuster. Thanks Venessa!

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