Have you ever come across a book that sounded really interesting, but then you just never got around to reading it, because well you possibly got distracted by other equally or more interesting books?
For me, that’s exactly what happened with this book/series. I found the premise really interesting, but clearly never interesting enough to pick it up right away. That is until the movie happened. And then I just had to get to it immediately.
Because well what can I say, it’s one of the many bookish quirks I have. I always need to read the book before I see the movie. Unless of-course it is a genre/plot that doesn’t interest me at all.
Which is why, an adaptation getting released, always guarantees a book getting bumped up on my TBR. Which I may or may not have picked up otherwise.
Anyway, that’s how I came to read this book/series, which is what I’ll review today, along with my thoughts about the adaptation.
To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before – The Book
The premise of this book revolves around Lara Jean and her love letters. Not letters that she received, but ones she wrote. To All The Boys She Ever Loved. Or the ones she had an intense crush on anyway.
But the thing is she never meant to send these letters or even have any of them read the contents of these letters. In-fact she wrote these letters as more of a good bye note. In hopes that once she writes down all her feelings towards someone, she can finally relieve herself of them, and move on with her life.
If Love is like a Possession, maybe my Letters are like my Exorcisms. — Lara Jean, To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before.
And this system worked perfectly well for her. Until one fine day when all her letters got mailed. To all 5 boys she wrote them to. All at once.
For 16 year old Lara Jean, this was no less than a nightmare of epic proportions. And the book follows her life, as she navigates the repercussions of this mortifying circumstance (?!)
Which to be completely honest was quite interesting to read. In-fact the book had everything one would expect in a light, fluffy romance, and more.
I say more, because I really connected with Lara Jean as a girl, in many (good and not so good) ways, and I loved how real her character was. Not perfect, not by a long shot, but real.
I also loved their family dynamic, and how the relationship between the sisters was portrayed. Everything, from the petty fights, the underlying tensions, the power struggles, to the genuine bond of unconditional love and support – everything was so real and relatable – that I couldn’t help but care about these fictional people.
And then of-course there’s the main “conflict” of the book – the letters to the boys. But I can’t really say much about them without risking getting into spoiler territory.
However I will say this – I really really do love the “main pairing” (if you can call it that) in this book, even though I am not sure if that’s who she is going to end up with. Because this is only the first book of the trilogy, and a lot can happen over the course of the following two books, which might completely change the course of the relationships in this book/series. But that doesn’t stop me from hoping these two are end-game. 🙂
All in All: It’s a sweet, charming, heartwarming read, which will definitely keep you entertained (so long as you don’t take it too seriously, which if you ask me, you shouldn’t).
GET THIS BOOK HERE:
To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before – The Movie
I saw this movie right after I read the first book. This wasn’t the best idea, because of a couple of reasons (which I’ll get to in a bit) but those things did not hamper my enjoyment of the movie.
Overall I found the movie very cute and charming, which basically was exactly what I was expecting it to be, considering the source material. But I’ve to say that the book was loads better.
And no I’m not only saying this because I believe ‘the book is always better than the movie’ or something like that. Even though it is, more often than not.
In-fact I have to say that as adaptations go, this one was pretty great. They might have changed a lot of things around (some of them for no good reason) but they stayed true to the essence of the story, and I think that’s what matters most.
However (and I don’t know if I can explain this well, so please bear with me) everything in the movie version seemed a little toned down, compared to the book. The characters/the romance/the conflict – everything seemed a little less than (if you get what I mean).
But then I think, this was also possibly because I finished the book, and then (quite literally) 1 hour later saw the movie, which might have made me (unnecessarily) fuss over the details.
ALSO CHECK OUT: 3 Book to Screen Blockbusters Reviewed
Because I’m pretty sure that had I let some time pass, between the book and the movie, I would have loved the movie adaptation more.
Especially because there were so many great things about this adaptation – they captured the spirit of the story, the casting was spot on, and what’s more, even the characters (for a change) did look 16 (or close to it anyway).
So you see..the adaptation did have a lot going for it. I possibly just needed some time and space between the two versions.
That being said, I still shouldn’t have seen the movie after having only read the first book. Because the climax of the movie contains spoilers from Book #2.
Now don’t get me wrong, I don’t blame the movie makers for the spoilery content, because well Book #1 ends on a cliffhanger, and if they had to give some closure to the movie audience, they had to borrow from Book #2.
It’s just that when I finally did get to Book #2 (which btw is my current read) it was difficult to not confuse the altered plot lines. And again, the book version (of the story) was so much better that I regretted seeing the movie before having read it.
So if you share my quirks, I’d recommend you to read Book 1 & 2, before you see the movie.
However, even if you don’t care about the book(s) at all, you must check out the movie if you are looking for a cute and adorable romance.
GET THIS BOOK HERE:
To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before – Reading Order
Book #1 To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before
Book #2 – P.S. I Still Love You
Book #3 – Always and Forever, Lara Jean
That’s all from my end folks. I’d love to hear from you. Did you read the book/series? How did you find the movie? Do share!
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