Sara Fajardo, The Highlander staff writer reviews the book and Netflix movie "To All the Boys I've Loved Before."
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is a movie taking Netflix by storm. What viewers may not know, however, is that the beloved film first appeared as a book four years ago, hitting the shelves of bookstores across the country on April 15, 2014. Author Jenny Han followed the stand alone novel with two more books. The trilogy centers around high school junior Lara Jean Covey. Lara Jean writes love letters every time she has a crush and then stores the letters away in a hat box. When the letters accidentally get sent out, Lara Jean is forced to leave her sheltered life behind and come out of her shell.
Four years after the novels release, the movie adaption of To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before was released on August 17, 2018, via Netflix. The movie featured the same relatable and likable characters as the book. Actress Lana Condor embodied Lara Jean wonderfully, and Anna Cathcart and Janel Parrish were perfect in their portrayals of Lara Jean’s sisters. There were slight differences between the movie and the book, including the movie’s omittance of a fan favorite Halloween scene from the book, descriptions of Lara Jean’s best friend Christine (as her overall personality is different, she is much flakier in the book), and the reason behind the fake, turned real, relationship between characters Lara Jean and Peter. Despite these variations, the movie’s script and heartwarming message enchanted book lovers as much as the novels did. However, there is one distinct reason why the movie blew up more than the books ever did: Peter Kavinsky.
The character Peter Kavinsky is played by the dreamy actor Noah Centineo, who gained millions of Instagram followers following the release of the film. Peter Kavinsky was sweet and charming in the book, but many of the scenes in the film were even more swoon worthy. The way Peter reacts to slander being spread about Lara Jean also has an impact on viewers.
The hot tub scene is perhaps the most pivotal point in both the film and the book. After Lara Jean spends a promiscuous night in a hot tub on a ski trip, mean girl Gen tapes a picture of Lara Jean and Peter to a locker, attracting attention and the writing of a crude phrase. After seeing students laughing and pointing, Peter comes to Lara Jean’s rescue, declaring that if anyone is caught talking about the incident, they will be in big trouble.
Usually watching the movie before reading the book will cause the audience to miss out on the quirks and details only found in the novel. However, in the case of To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, no one would want to miss out on spending a night on Netflix rooting for Lara Jean Covey.
Editor's Note: The Highlander section features articles written for The Highlander, Gov. Livingston High School's student newspaper.