P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han

Genre: YA Contemporary
Format read: audiobook
Rep: POC (asian), mixed race
Series: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before vol. 2
Rating: planchet-3

After faking a relationship for several months in book one, Laura Jean and Peter are finally, officially, a couple.

However, their obstacles are not over yet. They have definitely succeeded in making Peter’s ex jealous–as evidenced when spreads a video of Peter and Laura Jean making out in a hot tub on a school trip. Despite their best efforts to get the video taken down, it keeps showing up in unsurprising places, leaving Laura Jean humiliated.

When she gets a response to her one missing letter from the previous semester, she rekindles a friendship she thought was gone forever. Peter, however, is jealous. Worse, he can’t understand why Laura Jean gets so angry when he spends so much time with his ex–and then lying about it.

With their fledgling relationship on the rocks, Laura Jean escapes into her volunteer work at a local retirement home, where the ladies are always happy to see her, offering advice on dealing with boys, and are more than willing to set her up with their grandsons.

When one of those grandsons shows up unexpectedly, sparks will definitely fly. But will they be romantic, or just friction?

The Laura Jean books are so cute and sweet. I do have a bit of a problem with some of the things in them–like the jealousy issues, and the fact that apparently Peter’s “best quality” is his face.

This book delves a lot into Laura Jean’s insecurities with sex and her attitudes about it. At times I think it got a bit obsessive, but maybe that’s just because I’m not sixteen. Personally, I think Laura Jean can do better than Peter, though he was very sweet in the way he tried to protect her in this book.

While this isn’t my favorite series, it does evoke some of the feelings I got from Fangirl, which is one of my favorite contemporaries of all time. I guess I have a soft spot for insecure teenage girls.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

Genre: YA Contemporary
Format read: audiobook
Rep: POC (asian), mixed race
Rating: planchet-3

Wallflower Laura Jean can’t confess the way she feels to her crushes, so she writes letters to them instead. But when someone uncovers her secret love letters and mails them, it sends her into a tailspin. Not only have all of her old crushes gotten letters, but so has her current crush and neighbor, Josh. Even worse, Josh also happens to be her older sister’s recent ex.

To help save face and convince Josh she isn’t really interested in him–and maybe to convince herself, too–she and another letter recipient, Peter, decided to pretend they are a couple. Bonus points: Dating Laura Jean will really piss off his ex, Genevieve.

But the lie soon gets out of hand, and neither Laura Jean nor Peter can tell what’s real and what’s just the fantasy anymore.

I was late catching the train on this one. Honestly, I don’t regret it too much. I liked the movie, and though it was pretty cute. I’m a bit less keen on the book (I know, I know. *Ducks flying objects*).

While I loved Laura Jean’s voice, I’m not crazy about Josh or Peter. Josh is a cabbage–that is, a character that could be replaced with a cabbage, and no one would notice. He has very few opinions and the only time we see him express an actual emotion, it’s jealousy.

Peter is the obnoxious kind of boy that I avoided in high school, and the type of man that makes me roll  my eyes and leave the room. Even worse, the narrator for this one did a really annoying voice for him. It was completely in character, but so annoying to listen to. Honestly, I think Laura Jean could do better than both of them.

While the “falling for my fake boyfriend/girlfriend” trope is one of my favorites, I’m still only lukewarm on this book. I do want to finish the series, but it was still only about 3-3.5 stars for me.