Thursday, June 1, 2017

Book Review: Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #3) by Jenny Han

Author: Jenny Han
Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
Pages: 320
Format: E-book
Published: May, 2017
Price: $10.05 -> Rp133.675 (Amazon)
Rating: 3½ / 5 stars

Date started: May 31, 2017 - Date finished: June 1, 2017

Other books in the series:

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?
It's Lara Jean's senior year and everything is going great. Her father and Ms. Rothschild is getting married soon, she and Kitty couldn't be more thrilled about that. On top of that, things are going great between her and his boyfriend Peter Kavinsky. College acceptance news is one of the most important part for seniors. Lara Jean and Peter already planned on going to the University of Virginia together. Peter got in early there because he got a lacrosse scholarship and Lara Jean really wants to go there because UVA has been her dream school.

When college acceptance news came around, Lara Jean didn't get into UVA, which kind of dampen the plan she had with Peter. Few weeks later, she got into one of her safety schools, which isn't far away. She committed to that school and is planning on transferring to UVA after a year there to stick with the plan. One day, out of the blue, she got accepted into a school that she thought was impossible for her to get in. She then went there with a friend and ended up really liking it up to the point of thinking of going there instead of her safety school choice, the problem is it's really far from UVA and Lara Jean and Peter is not sure long distance will work for them.

Lara Jean is not sure she wants UVA anymore, Peter is getting busier with college lacrosse trainings and they kind of slowly drifted apart because changes are coming and its coming fast.
It's only been one day and I'm already longing for him the way I long for Christmas in July. Peter is my cocoa in a cup, my red mittens, my Christmas morning feeling.
This is by far the best book in the series, but its definitely not without its flaws. For me, Lara Jean grew up in this book. In the previous books she was kind of immature and annoyed the hell out of me, but oddly not that much in this one. Although, there were still some scenes where she were acted childish but she's not as gullible as she was before and she's also more confident and more open to trying new things. To me, the main point of this book was to show the readers how Lara Jean is coming into her own, discovering herself, who she wants to be as a person. I really liked that the author focused on that.
"A meet-cute is when the hero and heroine meet for the very first time, and it's always in a charming way. It's how you know they're going to end up together. The cuter the better."
"The hottest places in hell are reserved for people who maintain neutrality in times of crisis," I say, licking my spoon
This is one of those books where plot-wise not much happened and the driving force of the story is the relationship between the main characters. The conflicts of this book lie in the relationship of its main characters and also some family problems. What I dislike about this book is how the "main conflict" surrounding the main characters was so exaggerated, it's actually not that big of a deal but it was made into such a big fuss here.

Side characters weren't developed all that well as I thought it would be. I mean it is the third book and we still didn't get to know more about Lara Jean's father or Ms. Rothschild and they were pretty important in this book. But correct me if I'm wrong because I didn't revisit the first and second book before starting the third one so I might miss some things. I do like that there's more Margot and Kitty, interactions of the Song girls are the other plus point of this book beside Lara Jean and Peter's romance. 
"Disappointment is good for kids, it prepares them for the real world, where it's not all about them and their feelings."
Families shrink and expand. All you can really do is be glad for it, glad for each other, for as long as you have each other.
The romance is still the main selling point of this series, and Jenny Han definitely delivered. This series definitely is super sweet and fluffy in terms of relationship. It showcased the best of young adult romances, what youngsters feel when they experience love albeit sometimes the romance felt a bit too good to be true. I mean come on, Lara Jean and Peter's romance is like one of those romances that only happen in movies. Oh yeah, I can also definitely picture this series being turned into a movie.
"Neither of us wants to break up. So why should we? Because of some shit my mom said? Because your sister did it that way? You're not the same as your sister, Lara Jean. We're not the same as Margot and Sanderson or anybody else. We're you and me. And yeah, it's gonna be hard. But Lara Jean, I'll never feel for another girl what I feel for you." He says it with all the certainty only a teenage boy can have, and I have never loved him more than at this very moment.
I'm not sure if I recommended this book to anyone in my previous reviews on its predecessors but if I did and said that I'd recommend it to everyone I take that back. After reading this book I think this book is more suitable for hardcore contemporary romance readers because they'll appreciate it more.

That's all for now!

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