Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han

Genre: YA, Contemporary, Romance
My rating: 3/5
Recommended for: People who have read the previous two books in the series

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Going away to college is a big deal. This is what Lara Jean is going through, too. It’s somewhat easier though that she’s made up her mind to go to UVA, which is very close to home she can practically go back on weekends if she wants to. Plus, her athlete boyfriend is also going there. It’s all been written for her, and she can’t wait to start the future that she has dreamed of for a long time… But then, an unwanted email arrives.

This is an ending to the widely popular series To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before that I never expected to come out. The first book ended nicely as a one-off, but then the second one came out and it wrapped up the story well, too. And then this one came out and I was like, do we absolutely need this? Frankly, I don’t think that’s the case.

Let’s start off with things I do like about this book: Peter Kavinsky. He’s a prince. He knows how to love, and he isn’t the least bit embarrassed to show it. Obviously, he isn’t perfect, and I think the way Han writes his character is what makes the light yet fun series so addictive.

I also really like Lara Jean’s family! I have since book one. They don’t have a mother, but I feel like they are a very happy family where everyone isn’t afraid to say what they think, because it’s very clear that they all accept and love each other.

The book reminds me of how scary it is to make big life decisions (something I still experience now), and it’s nice how Lara Jean takes people’s opinions into account but ultimately makes her own choice. It’s an important message young people should remember, and this book delivers.

It also talks about how family is something you choose – you’re not family simply because you’re related by blood. It takes a real effort, and if you want to be in someone’s life, you show it by showing up and supporting each other.

Why I don’t think this particular book is necessary, though, other than that the story felt complete at the end of book two, is also that it’s essentially the same things with the previous books. It feels more like an addition – an afterthought – than a conclusion. It’s a much welcome one, though, because I really do like the characters in this series and it was fun hearing more about their lives.

It’s a fun one – it’s full of Peter Kavinsky style romance, Chris style friendship, and even John Ambrose McClarence makes an appearance! It’s not a must-read, but it’s like a nice letter from people you like, catching you up with their lives.

Bonus points:

  • Peter Kavinsky. I’m gonna say his name a million times more because he’s my favorite thing from all these books.
  • “Never say no when you want to say yes.” – Stormy
  • Best friend road trip!
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