DISCLAIMER: this review was originally written and posted to my booklr (bookish tumblr) on MAY 9TH, 2015, and is being archived on this blog. This review contains my thoughts on the book at the time that I read it, but I have not re-read it since then, so my feelings about the content may have changed.
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Date of Publication: April 15th, 2014
Dates Read: May 6th – 9th, 2015
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.
My (initial) rating: ★★★★☆
I actually liked this book. I had just read a thrilling, action packed book that had tired me out, so I picked this book up hoping for a nice, cute, soft, fluffy read. And that’s pretty much what I got. But it’s not without its flaws.
I knew I would like the book as soon as I read the description. I’ve been in Lara Jean’s shoes before (liking a lot of guys and having them all find out, although my crushes didn’t find out all at the same time), so I figured I would relate to her relatively well. I found a lot of similarities between us, actually; half asian half white, better at baking than cooking, overlapping elementary school crushes, a little whiney and annoying… maybe my review is biased because I see so much of myself in Lara Jean.
Anyway, aside from my fictional twin, I really enjoyed the cast of characters. They were all different and interesting and meshed well. The dialogue was smooth and realistic, the family dynamic imperfect and therefore perfect. Emotions were portrayed very well, almost making my eyes well up at one point. Really, the plot was good and I finished it relatively quickly. I kept wanting to read it, which to me is a sign of a good book.
One of my only complaints is that it was a little cliche sometimes.
Oh yeah, and I hate the ending.
When I got to the last page I turned it thinking there was another chapter. But there wasn’t, just the Acknowledgement. And I was confused. And really frustrated. Why did Han end it like that? I was left with more questions than answers. I remembered after that the sequel’s coming out soon, but I still hate the ending.
Overall: Lovely read with a frustrating ending.