Posted in Book Reviews

Mini Book Reviews: To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before Series + Movie Review

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When I heard that the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before series was being made into a Netflix movie, I knew that I wanted to read the series before watching it. I was able to get the series box-set for super cheap before I left my job at the bookstore, so this was the perfect time and opportunity to read it in its entirety! I’m going to do three mini reviews, and then talk about my thoughts on the movie as well. Let’s get to it!

**Warning: Spoilers ahead! Proceed with caution!**

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To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han ~ 355 pages ~ published 4/15/14 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Synopsis:

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.

What I Thought:

I thought that this was a cute, sweet little story. Lara Jean is a fun and relatable main character who made me want to root for her. I enjoyed the fact that she had a fairly diverse set of interests – she loves baking, Korean culture, her family, volunteering at the senior living center and the boy next door. I found the plot to be fun and attention grabbing. I just kept turning the pages, because I had to know what was going to happen next. I will say something now that might not make me any friends though…I’m not really a big Peter fan 😬 I found him to be kind of annoying and rather selfish. I left this book hoping he would grow on me though.

My Rating:

4.5/5.0

I gave To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before 4.5 STARS.


psistillloveyou

P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han ~ 337 pages ~ published 5/26/15 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Synopsis:

Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once? Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing.

What I Thought:

Of the three books in the series, this one is my favorite. I thought that Lara Jean did a lot of growing up in this book. It helped me to see her as a more well-rounded character, and it started exploring her as an individual more, and less in relation to the boys around her. I mean, it definitely had a lot to do with the boys around her, namely Peter and John Ambrose McClaren. I did feel that the love triangle thing was a little bit tired, but I appreciated Lara Jean’s emotional progress through it, so I’ll let it slide.

My Rating:

5.0/5.0

I gave P.S. I Still Love You 5 STARS.


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Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han ~ 325 pages ~ 5/2/17 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Goodreads Synopsis:

Lara Jean is having the best senior year.

And there’s still so much to look forward to: a class trip to New York City, prom with her boyfriend Peter, Beach Week after graduation, and her dad’s wedding to Ms. Rothschild. Then she’ll be off to college with Peter, at a school close enough for her to come home and bake chocolate chip cookies on the weekends.

Life couldn’t be more perfect!

At least, that’s what Lara Jean thinks . . . until she gets some unexpected news.

Now the girl who dreads change must rethink all her plans—but when your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?

What I Thought:

I liked this book the least of the three. I felt frustrated by Lara Jean’s indecisiveness and immaturity in this book. The fact that she was so intent on her boyfriend that she almost decided to not enjoy college because she wasn’t near him was an incredible let-down. The fact that she kept giving Peter more and more second chances even when he was treating her like trash was annoying. I liked that she finally figured out that she should focus on herself rather than her boyfriend when it came to her college decision was gratifying, but I would have much rather she had just made a clean break from Peter, personally.

My Rating:

4.0/5.0

I gave Always and Forever, Lara Jean 4 STARS.


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To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before – The Movie!

What I Thought:

I thought that the movie was, overall, very sweet and cute. It was definitely a quality teen romantic drama, a good chick flick, if you will. I also liked how they made Peter a more swoon-worthy romantic interest (in my humble opinion). They changed some things from the book, as well as left out some stuff from the book, but I felt like they stayed very true to the original storyline overall. One thing that annoyed me was that I felt like they made Josh’s character more whiny and annoying, which is not at all how I felt he came across in the books. I realize that this helps the audience to like Peter more, but as a reader it bothered me. It wasn’t the best movie ever, but it was certainly worth watching.

My Rating:

3.5/5.0

I gave the To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before movie 3.5 STARS.


Are you interested in learning more about this series? Check out the links below! 

Jenny Han’s Website

Jenny Han’s Twitter

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before on Goodreads

Purchase To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before series on Amazon


Have you read this series? Have you seen the movie? I would love to know what you thought of each of them! Let me know down in the comments. 

Love and happy reading,

Posted in Book Reviews

Book Review: Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander #2)

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Dragonfly in Amber (Outlander #2) by Diana Gabaldon ~ 754 pages ~ published 7/1/92 by Dell

Goodreads Synopsis:

For twenty years Claire Randall has kept her secrets. But now she is returning with her grown daughter to Scotland’s majestic mist-shrouded hills. Here Claire plans to reveal a truth as stunning as the events that gave it birth: about the mystery of an ancient circle of standing stones about a love that transcends the boundaries of time …and about James Fraser, a Scottish warrior whose gallantry once drew a young Claire from the security of her century to the dangers of his…

Now a legacy of blood and desire will test her beautiful copper-haired daughter, Brianna, as Claire’s spellbinding journey of self-discovery continues in the intrigue-ridden Paris court of Charles Stuart in a race to thwart a doomed Highlands uprising …and in a desperate fight to save both the child and the man she loves…

What I Thought:

After absolutely loving the first book in the Outlander series (you can read my review of book one here), I was very excited to read Dragonfly in Amber. It was much to my dismay that I had such a hard time getting into this book. I have been trying to finish this book since April…which is unheard of for me.

I am generally able to get through a book this size within a few weeks, maybe a month tops. To this day, I’m still not exactly sure what it is about Dragonfly in Amber that didn’t capture me. It was incredibly well researched. Gabaldon, as always, writes absolutely beautifully. The characters are interesting and well-written. All in all, I should be jumping up and down for joy over this book. But, I had to actually schedule out chapters to motivate me to finish reading it.

By the last quarter of the book, I was really flying through it. The entire part of the book after Claire and Jamie return to Scotland was incredibly interesting to me. The beginning of the book, in the 1960’s, was slow for me. I felt the same way about the pre-time-travel section in the first book, so I was expecting it. However, the whole section of the book that took place in Paris (which was at least half, if not more) was just…meh.

I’m not sure if pacing was the issue, or if it was something else. Generally, if it takes me months to get through a book, I will just set it aside and move on. However, I have been told by other Outlander fans that book two is not as good as the others, and that I should push through. I’ve heard great things about book three, so I’m glad that I finished Dragonfly in Amber, if only so that I can move on to the rest of the series.

My Rating:

3.5/5.0

I gave this book 3.5 STARS. I originally gave it 4 Stars, if only because Gabaldon is such an amazing writer, who wrote captivating characters and did incredibly thorough research. But the immense effort that it took for me to get through this book docked it a bit more in the points for me.


Are you interested in learning more about this book/series? Check out the links below!

Diana Gabaldon’s Website

Diana Gabaldon’s Twitter

Dragonfly in Amber on Goodreads

Purchase Dragonfly in Amber on Amazon


Have you read Dragonfly in Amber? Are you a fan of the Outlander series? Do you watch the tv show? Let me know down in the comments! 

Love and happy reading,