'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Saturday 19 January 2019

Review: To All the Boys I've Loved Before

For a well-written, can't-put-down summer read, you can't go past To All the Boys I've Loved Before by successful US author Jenny Han. Although published in 2014, I came across it the other day and had a glimpse to see why this novel/series has been so popular. I wasn't disappointed.

In the first of this best selling trilogy, we meet Lara Jean, a 17-year-old of Korean/American background who has kept secret love letters to the five boys she's ever loved, in an old cherished hat box.

One day, somehow, all her letters are posted and Lara Jean has to deal with the fallout of the letters' contents. She is mortified, especially as one of the recipients of the letters is her sister's recent ex-boyfriend and another is one of the hottest, most popular guys at school. Lara Jean has a lot of explaining to do.

In damage control, and although always a homebody and introvert, she has the advantage of being a funny, smart and a positive person. Lara Jean's sudden inexplicable impulsive behaviour one day at school with one of the boys leads to a plan to solve her problem with the other four recipients of the letters.

I won't divulge any spoilers here but Lara Jean's life is propelled into unknown territory and what follows is a highly engaging un-put-downable novel with strong and beautiful characterisation, sharp dialogue and the reality of high school and teenage drama in a modern world. You can't help but love Lara Jean. I loved her proud rich cultural heritage and mature, responsible personality and how Lara Jean has to deal with a whole lot of teen drama for the first time in her life - and make sense of it.

This New York Times bestselling series is also a Netflix film. Guaranteed to please.

Title: To All the Boys I've Loved Before
Author: Jenny Han
Publisher: Simon & Schuster, $20.99
Publication Date: 7 August 2014
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781407149073
For ages: 12+
Type: Young Adult Fiction