To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
Concepts That Made Me Hate This Book
“If love is like a possession, maybe my letters are like my exorcisms. My letters set me free.”
There is a page that occurs before the novel starts. It’s not a prologue and I guess it’s suppose to set the tone of the novel, but it does not. From this page, you’d think that the focus of the novel would be on these letters and the repercussions, but nope, there are only brief mentions of these letters, which leads me to my next point.
It took seven chapters to mention the love letters, thirteen to see a partial one, and sixteen chapters to see a full letter. For a story that’s suppose to be about a girl’s life after her secret love letters are revealed, what’s with all the fluff? Jenny Han didn’t spend her time creating a foundation for the eventual problems, she was simply filling pages. I hate reading a book that takes forever to get to the point.
This protagonist sucks. First of all, why does a 16-year-old sound 12? It’s hard to explain, but Lara Jean’s way of speaking and explaining things sounds too young and naive to be a genuine 16-year-old. It’s something you have to read to understand, but this book isn’t for anyone who enjoys a strong female character. As further proof of her naivety, Lara Jean once says, “I never knew it before, but I think maybe all this time I’ve been invisible. Just someone who was there.” Really? She’s only now realizing she doesn’t have any friends? She spends all her time with her sisters, her elder sister’s boyfriend, and her “best friend” who’s only around when she’s in trouble with her parents. Yet Lara Jean doesn’t realize she doesn’t have friends or people who notice her at school. Again I question what kind of sixteen year old is this stupid. The last negative characteristic I’m going to comment on- and trust me there are many- is how dramatic Lara Jean is. After realizing the letters have been sent, Lara Jean laments, “This is a horror movie. My life has become a horror movie.” While I’d also be super embarrassed if my secret thoughts and feelings were revealed to my crushes, I would not equate the feeling to being chased around be a serial killer or a monster. Sorry but that’s too much teen angst for me.
The One Thing I Liked About This Book
Kitty. Kitty is Lara Jean’s 9-year-old sister, who Lara Jean talks about as if she’s six, when actually Kitty acts much older. Kitty is the strong female character that Lara Jean should be. To fully explain the awesomeness that is Kitty would mean providing spoilers, which I won’t do. Just know she’s a great character.
Even though this book sucked and I wish I could get those hours of my life back, I will read the sequel because this book ends in a too obvious cliffhanger and I despise leaving a story unfinished.