A Review of ‘To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before’ by Jenny Han


Carson Francis

The young adult series, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han, is one of romance and diversity.

Jenny Han is the author of several other books, which include the children’s’ novels Shug and Clara Lee and the Apple Pie Dream, the coming-of-age series The Summer I Turned Pretty, and the Burn for Burn trilogy. Han has been writing since 2006, first publishing Shug while still attending college at The New School.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before touches basis on the romantic and personal struggles an average teenage girl experiences in high school. The first book within the series starts with a girl who is facing various challenges as she faces reality in high school; the following book in the series, P.s. I Still Love You, continues with the same story, along with Always and Forever, Lara Jean; the final installment finishing the chapter in the girl’s life as she grows up and has to move on with her life as an adult. The emotions felt throughout the first book, but the series as a whole as well grabs readers’ attention in a sense that the struggles being faced are relatable and personal to many.

In To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, the story follows teenager Lara Jean Song Covey. Lara Jean has experienced love several times, but here’s the catch– she has never confessed to one of her crushes. Instead, she wrote letters to each of the five guys she fell in love with and kept them. Until one day, they mysteriously get sent out to all of the guys the letters are addressed to. From this, Lara Jean’s life spirals out of control as she reencounters old love, carries the heavy duty on her shoulders of taking over her older sister’s place once she has left for college across the world, and looking after her quirky, but hard-working father and little sister.

The story goes through this girl’s journey in finding herself and facing reality in the world of romance. It is definitely a wild ride to keep up with as Lara Jeans gets hit with a train of emotions, and so will readers. Emotions experienced are relatable to many teenagers in general, not just girls. Love is a hill a fair amount of teenagers tend to climb, or at least hope to.

The story, of course, holds bits and pieces of irony and comedy. Diversity presents itself in the book, too, as Lara Jean is half Korean and half Caucasian, along with her sisters. In the book, audiences read about the different customs and parts to Lara Jean’s Korean heritage here and there, giving insight on the diversity that is a part of many families.

At the end of the day, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is a story that should undoubtedly be read, whether it be just the first book alone or the whole series. Although, the first book is likely to draw readers’ attention to only read more. The story can appeal to audiences who may prefer differing genres; a book that is one to undeniably be favored.

If interested in reading this engaging book, the school’s library carries it along with its partner, P.s. I Still Love You. Come check it out!

*If interested in buying your own personal copy, look here!