Author: Jenny Han
Started: January 29, 2019
Finished: February 3, 2019
Genre: Young Adult
First Sentence: I like to save things.
Summary: [From BN] What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them...all at once? Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control.
Thoughts: I must confess that I saw the Netflix film of this book first. I loved the film and and fully expected that I would be enchanted by the book. I was.
As with all adaptations, I think the book is richer and more nuanced than the film. Our characters get to be more fleshed out and their emotions are a touch more complicated. Also, since the film mashed two of the books together, the story has a bit more of a slow burn to it. The story telling is well-paced with enough drama to keep it going without flying off the rails.
What I love most about this book is the connection between the sisters. Han gives backstory as it is needed and throws in character quirks at the right time. Those aspects show the strong bond between the Song girls. It also shows why their emotions get all tangled up at points throughout the text. These three girls feel like real sisters. While Lara Jean is the star of the books, her story would be sorely lacking without her sisters. It's a real treat to see this family come alive on the page.
I will get Netflix this - their design and casting decisions were spot on.
Rating: 8/10 [Terrific]