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Episode #004 | Love Letters: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before review

Saturday, 22 September 2018
Podcast episode 4, to all the boys I've loved before book and movie review hand lettering

(0:00) On your way to work? Doing a spring clean? Or maybe you’re just chilling at home with a cup of coffee. Whatever you’re doing, however you find yourself here, welcome to Rants and Reviews. In this episode we dive into the details of the Young Adult novel, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, by Jenny Han, and discuss whether the 2018 Netflix movie adaptation lived up to expectations. Spoiler warning: we do talk in detail about both the book and the movie, so if you aren’t familiar with the story but are planning to read or watch it in the future, this might not be the episode for you. If you’re not fussed, stay tuned!


Each episode we’re going to be sharing what we’re currently reading, so you can discover our favourite genes, add some books to your TBR pile, and hear us rave and rage about characters, plot, setting and more. Sophie is currently reading Travelling in the Dark by Emma Timpany, and What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera. Anjali is currently reading The Anger of Angels by Sherryl Jordan.

(02:50) Instead of jumping straight from our Currently Reading into the main feature, we talked about the outrageousness of magazine prices. Sophie recently bought the latest Frankie magazine (which has a cool cover - check out our Instagram in the coming week!), and it was NZD $15. Anjali mentions the only magazine she’d buy is the New Philosopher magazine, which is also $15.

(05:12) Anjali has also seen recently that the Hush Hush series by Becca Fitzpatrick is becoming a movie, so she thinks maybe she needs to bump the series up her TBR list.

(07:20) Sophie gets excited about receiving her Book Exchange book, which is a fun Instagram chain floating around the place. Essentially you put your hand up to send a stranger one of your favourite books, and if anyone expresses interest to your about the exchange, you give them the address of the person before you. So everyone gets books from people all around the world! It’s a super neat idea.


(08.30) To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before has recently come out on Netflix, and is an adaption of the book. Here’s the synopsis from Goodreads: What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them… all at once? Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control. Sophie gave it a 4 stars on Goodreads, Anjali gave it a 4.5 stars.

(10:08) We chat about who writes love letters these days, and who addresses them. Sophie: Get a diary! Anjali: With a lock on it!

(10:50) We spend a little time talking about the characters we liked and the ones we didn’t like. The opinions changed a little between the book and the movie.

(13:25) Find out which one of us cried at the ending on the book (but not in the movie).

(13:50) We chat about the ending and whether it was good or not, and if it makes sense in regards to the following two books (P.S I Still Love You and Always and Forever, Lara Jean). Neither of us have read the other two books yet, however they are on the list and we will get back to you when we have read them.’

(14:28) Sophie chats about Lara Jean and how she sits as a character in relation to other YA protagonists, mentioning that she doesn’t let her past define her as a person.

(15:42) Was it a good idea to read the book and then watch the movie straight afterwards? Anjali’s not sure.

(16.50) Who sends Lara Jean’s letters? We chat about how the movie makes it 100% obvious who sent the letters, while the book sort of left it open with a few possibilities.

(17:30) Sometimes movies change the ages of the characters in the book to suit their audience more, but it’s also the case (on occasion) that the voice of the characters in the books don’t quite suit their age. We spend a few moments chatting about this difference.

(18:10) When movies are made out of books you’ve really enjoyed, it’s hard to picture the characters in a way that’s different to what you had imagined in your head. We talk about the casting of TATBILB and if the characters matched what we had in our heads.

(19:45) Did the Netflix movie keep to the book? Were there changes? How well did they stick to the book?

(21:14) Sophie missed the entire post-credits scene with John Ambrose Mcclaren. Make sure you watch the credits, friends. Learn from Sophie!

(23:40) Anjali feels sad because someone misses out on setting up for Christmas in both the book and movie. And that hurts.

(25:30) Both the book and the movie are good on their own, so even if you read/watch one and not the other, then that’s totally fine. Even if you’re not into YA soppy, fluffy teen romance, you might actually enjoy this. It doesn’t have many of the typical clichés that most teen romances have, and we think that’s one of the things that makes it great.


Have you read or watched To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before yet? Do you agree with our thoughts? Let us know via social media! Tell us what you think or just give us a follow for updates and sneak peeks on future episodes. Until next time though, happy reading!

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Books mentioned in this episode
Travelling in the Dark by Emma Timpany, What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera, The Anger of Angels by Sherryl Jordan, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han, The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han.
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