In To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, Lara Jean Song Covey’s life is turned upside down when her younger sister sends out a series of love letters that she had written to the boys she had overwhelming feelings towards. One letter, to the popular and handsome Peter Kavinsky, led to a fake relationship that sparked real romance. The second book starts with Lara Jean deciding to make a play for Peter, for real this time. They get back together, or rather finally get together, and all is well…or is it?
Meanwhile, another letter finally reaches its recipient: Jon Ambrose McClaren. He used to live in their neighborhood when they were in junior high, and he and Lara Jean start a correspondence. In these letters, she conveniently never mentions that she is dating Peter now. For his part, Peter is always hanging out with his ex, Lara Jean’s former friend Gen. He claims that she is going through something, a family issue that he doesn’t want to divulge. To make matters worse, Peter and Lara Jean’s infamous hot tub video from the school ski trip is still circling around. Lara Jean is certain that Gen is responsible for putting out the video, but Peter denies it.
In less dramatic news, Lara Jean starts to volunteer at the local nursing home. She spends a lot of time with a sassy resident named Stormy. Stormy is always trying to set Lara Jean up with her great-grandson, who turns out to be none other than Jon Ambrose-McClaren! They have some romantic moments between them, especially when Peter and Lara Jean break up for a bit.
I also watched the Netflix version of P.S. I Still Love You. I really enjoyed their To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, especially Noah Centineo as Peter Kavinsky. The second movie was a pretty decent adaptation. The kids are still cute, and I enjoyed the romance. Jordan Fischer made for a charming Jon Ambrose, and made it a little hard to be completely Team Peter, though I still completely am. Even though the movie won’t be released for a bit, I also read the third and final book in the series, Always and Forever, Lara Jean.
At the start of the third book, Lara Jean and Peter are together and better than ever going into their senior year. They even plan to stay together in college. Peter was accepted to UVA to play lacrosse. UVA is also Lara Jean’s top choice, her dream school since childhood. It seems inevitable that she’ll get in…but she doesn’t.
Lara Jean decides to go to her second choice school, William and Mary. It’s a bit of a drive, but still somewhat manageable. Plus they decide that Lara Jean can always try to transfer to UVA after Freshman year, and everything will be perfect again…then Lara Jean finds out she got into UNC. She had been waitlisted at first, so she never gave it a second thought. He best friend makes her take a road trip to check out the campus. They end up having a big adventure with a concert and burritos, and Lara Jean falls in love with the school.
Alas, UNC is much farther than William and Mary. What should Lara Jean do? Their mother told Margot (LJ’s older sister) not to go to college obsessing over your high school boyfriend. Margot keeps telling Lara Jean to give whichever college she picks a fair chance, to choose what’s right for her and not what’s best for her relationship. Peter’s mom even secretly asks her to break up with Peter. She worries that Peter will give up his full scholarship to stay with Lara Jean, and Lara Jean would never let him destroy his future for her.
It’s sort of nice that there is less “I’m worried you’re going to cheat on me” drama in this book. It adds a certain maturity. Part of me was very proud and excited for the kids heading off to college, but I was also jealous because they are young, in love, and looking forward to the future while I am none of those things. Anyways, my sad life aside, I am looking forward to seeing the movie adaptation when it comes out and more of my inappropriate crush Noah Centineo.