Tuesday, October 9, 2018

Review: Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han + Series Review

Always and Forever, Lara Jean
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books For Young Readers
Release Date: May 2nd, 2017
Format: Hardback
My Rating: 


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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?
I am very conflicted about this review. I changed my rating for this multiple times before actually posting, because I just don't know what to think. On the one hand I liked this better than the second book, but on the other hand LITERALLY NOTHING HAPPENS! So, this book, and this series as a whole just had me super conflicted. I think partly this book wasn't supposed to be published, and it feels like it was done more as a fan-service. So if you love Lara Jean and you loved the other two novels, this is probably your jammeroo, but if you were "meh" on the second book I advise you to just quit reading. 





I think part of my issues with the book other than not really anything substantial happening in it, it was just filled with "high school drama". Which, I think is fine, because I am adult and I am CLEARLY not the target audience for this book, but it was just too much for me at times. I also think why this stuff bothered me so much was because I really think Lara Jean made the wrong choice in the second book. I don't think she ends up with the person she is supposed to be with, and the last book ends with me not really thinking she is going to stay with that person. Let's be real, they aren't going to stay together. 

What I really liked about the book is that it emphasis the extreme pressure kids have on themselves to burn themselves out in high school just so that they can get into the perfect college. I was really glad this book showed failure and how in life everything doesn't always go according to plan. I never really experienced this myself, I applied to like three state schools and got into the one I wanted so I went there, but I know a lot of people go through this. It's a really tough time, and I think there is way too much pressure on kids to do X,Y,Z to get into a college and get a good job. To be perfect, perfect, perfect, and I HATE that. I also like that Lara Jean realizes that maybe her plan just wasn't the right plan for her. My favorite part in this book is when she goes to Chapel Hill with Chris and sees the college, and it's the right college for her. I was getting super worried she was going to go somewhere else just because of a boy. So I was glad about her college choices at the end of this book. 

The book was still a cute romance, but I just felt a little indifferent to what was going on in this one...because there wasn't really a plot. I need a plot to really enjoy a story. So it wasn't a bad book per se, it just didn't really make me want to talk about it all that much. 


FINAL SERIES THOUGHTS:

I still think this is a cute and easy series to get through. I LOVED the first one, and I still stand by my review of it. I would still recommend the first book, but if you are not completely sold on it, I don't think the rest of the series is for you. I found myself just not really feeling anything from the second book or this final book. I just didn't care anymore. I think overall, I just didn't love Peter and Lara Jean in real life, but more the idea of them. I would still give this series as a whole a solid 3-star rating.

Have you read the series? What do you think? Do you agree with me on the third book? If you loved it, why?



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Happy Reads Everyone!
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