*thumbs up at Jenny Han* P.S. There are mild spoilers if you haven’t read the first two books, but otherwise it’s spoiler free!
Title: Always and Forever, Lara Jean
Author: Jenny Han
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Genre: YA Contemporary Fiction
Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.
Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.
But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.
When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?
For people who haven’t read the trilogy, here’s my quick explanation of the first book, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before: When Lara Jean “loves” a boy, to get over him, she writes a love letter to him and never sends it. She puts all of her letters into a hat box instead. One day, she looks into the box and the letters are gone. They’ve all been sent and Lara Jean has to deal with what ensues (but don’t worry, it all turns out all right in the end). The second and third books are just continuations of Lara Jean’s story and relationships.
Jenny Han the queen of contemporary, has not let us down this time! Always and Forever, Lara Jean, is the final (and a bit unexpected) book in the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before trilogy. Originally, it was only supposed to be a duology, but here we are!
Always and Forever, Lara Jean follows Lara Jean Song as she prepares to leave for college and for her father remarrying. She then needs to make majors decisions about which college to attend and what to do with her relationship with Peter, her boyfriend.
This book is completely heartwarming and lovely. Lara Jean’s family feels almost picture-perfect, though Lara Jean is struggling with beginning the next stage of her life. It’s a fluffy read, and it’s something that makes you feel happy when you finish. I smiled throughout the entire novel, and if you’re a fan of contemporary, I think you will too.
Almost obviously, it’s not a big thinker, but on the upside, it makes it a calming read. I can guarantee that it won’t make you anxious about what’s to happen later in the book. It’s that book that you really need every once in a while. If you haven’t read the trilogy yet, well, the other books have quite the same feeling and tone as this one.
Overall, I give Always and Forever, Lara Jean, 4.5/5 stars. Charming and well-written, I highly recommend this book.