This is the third year I’ll be participating in the Book Blogger’s Love-A-Thon and this year, I’m cohosting the event alongside Alexa of Alexa Loves Books, Cee of The Novel Hermit and Mel of The Daily Prophecy. Sign-ups are still open so there’s time if you want to join in (and you should) and the Love-A-Thon takes place from February 19th – 20th. It’s the perfect way to meet new book bloggers and make new friends<3
Is there anything more exciting than receiving a surprise care package from one of your best book buddies? Didn’t think so! If you had the opportunity to surprise one or more of your favorite characters with a care package for Valentine’s Day, what would you be sure to include? Have fun virtually shopping for the character(s) you love and let us know via photos, collages, etc., what you would love to send them!
My Character – Lara Jean Song
My Care Package
PRIZE PACK ONE (US GIVEAWAY ONLY):
Passenger, Vassa in the Night, Love and First Sight, A Season for Daring Greatly, Tor Teen pin, The Dark Talent pin, Amberlough pin
PRIZE PACK TWO (INTERNATIONAL GIVEAWAY ONLY):
Passenger, Truthwitch, Seven Days of You (ARC) Radio Silence (ARC), Metaltown tattoo, Tor sticker, Arabella of Mars paper doll, Becoming Bonnie newspaper
I was so excited when I saw Alexa Loves Books’s Christmas mini challenge! It’s called the Not-So-Secret Santa Mini Challenge and if you win, you get $25 worth of books from either Amazon or Book Depository! The challenge is to pick a book character (or several book characters) and tell what you would give them for Christmas!
Alexa already came up with some great ideas in her post so I’m going to try my best to pick different characters but there is one repeat I couldn’t resist (cough Lara Jean cough). Here are the top 5 characters I would love to buy Christmas presents for! Which book characters would you love to shop for if you could?
Lara Jean (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han)
Lara Jean loves baking just as much as I do so shopping for her would be so much fun. I think she would adore this pastel pink KitchenAid mixer because it would make her life easier and it completely matches her aesthetic. Plus, a KitchenAid mixer is the ultimate baker’s dream tool. I think Peter K. would appreciate this gift too because it would mean more sweets for him!
Cath (Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell)
Cath is a writer through and through and if there’s one thing a writer always needs (besides a pen), it’s a place to write down their ideas. I think Cath would really like these flowery Rifle Paper Co. notebooks. She could keep them with her when she’s traveling back home to visit her dad or when she’s sitting in class so if a Simon and Baz idea comes to her she can jot it down without having to fear it being lost.
Anna (Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins)
Anna is obsessed with film and writing movie reviews. It would be easy to get her a notebook as well, or something banana to add to her collection, but I think she would really enjoy this film projector necklace by Betsey Johnson. It seems like something she wouldn’t think to buy for herself but it would allow her to incorporate her favorite hobby into her everyday wardrobe.
Echo (The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey)
Echo is a girl after my own heart because she shares an affinity for good food. We already know she loves macarons and I think it would brighten her holiday to get a giant custom box full of her favorite flavors. Echo is really busy trying to figure out how to stop the war between the Avicen and the Drakhar so she doesn’t have the most time to be stopping to think about food and she can eat these macarons on the go.
Hermione (Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling)
Hermione is everyone’s favorite bookworm and what’s better to gift a bookworm than a set of collectible books? I think Hermione would appreciate this gorgeous collectible set of the Penguin Drop Caps editions and they would look lovely arranged in a central area on her bookshelf to brighten up the area where her neutral colored magic books are displayed.
*This book was sent to me by the publisher in exchange for an honest review. This is no way swayed my opinions.*
**Warning! If you haven’t read To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before which is the first book in the duology by Jenny Han, there will be spoilers ahead. You can read my review of the first book instead if you haven’t started the series yet!**
I can barely even begin to describe how excited I am to have gotten my hands on a bound manuscript of P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han which is the second book and the conclusion to her To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before duology. Ever since I finished the first book I’ve been CRAVING more of the Song sisters and I couldn’t be happier to say that the conclusion did not disappoint. P.S. I Still Love You continues Lara Jean’s story after all of the letters she has written to the boys she has loved during her life get sent out and she is forced to deal with the fallout. There will be spoilers ahead so if you haven’t read To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before you should stop reading this review, go read the book because it’s AMAZING and then come back here :-)
While reading the first book I determined that Kitty is hands down my favorite Song sister and while I haven’t changed my opinion, I grew so much more attached to Lara Jean in the second book that it came really close. I have to reiterate how enjoyable it is to read about such an inseparable trio of sisters. Margo is the oldest Song sis but ever since she left for college in Scotland, Lara Jean, the middle child, takes on more of a parental role in caring for their little sister Kitty and also for their father. All of the Song’s make family a priority and they’re all willing to go out of their way for one another. (Side note: Lara Jean is always baking the most delicious sounding desserts and I would give anything to be able to eat a meal at their house). The characters Jenny Han created are so real that I actually feel like I know them. Han turns this series that is seemingly a YA romance into something that deals heavily with the relationships between family members in a way that is so perfect that it’s like cake for your mind.
At the beginning of the second book, things between Lara Jean and Peter are just heating up before they’re faced with a series of obstacles to overcome. Both Lara Jean and Peter make mistakes and another flame from LJ’s past gets thrown into the mix. The romance between she and Peter is sweet, innocent and frustrating at times but in the most endearing way possible. Lara Jean spends a big portion of the book examining her past and present relationships (romantic, family-wise, and friend-wise) and I love that she gets the majority of her advice from an older woman who lives at the senior care facility that Lara Jean volunteers at.
Final Thoughts: P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han is the perfect contemporary novel. The characters are so well developed and it is an absolute pleasure to spend time in Lara Jean’s head and also to be afforded the luxury of being a part of the Song sisters in some small way. The book flawlessly captures the bond between sisters, the innocence and excitement of first loves and all of the speculation that goes along with growing up. I would be lying if I said I didn’t hug this book several times while pausing between chapters.
Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing. (via Goodreads)
A couple of weeks ago I heard about Jenny Han’s bow challenge to celebrate the upcoming release of P.S. I Still Love You and I knew I had to be a part of it! I LOVED the first book in her duology To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before (which I received for Christmas from my amazing Bookish Secret Santa Michelle!). I immediately had a vision in my mind of what I wanted my photo to look like and it helped that a couple of months prior I had ordered the PERFECT bow for such a situation. When I got home from work I styled my bun, placed my bow, and grabbed my beloved copy of the book. Luckily Andrew was such a good sport about taking multiple photos until I was pleased with the result (let’s just say there were roughly 60 photos that I didn’t use… yeah). But clearly, it was worth it! I can’t wait to receive my bow from Jenny Han and sport it around NYC this summer. I also CANNOT wait to start reading the second half of this story… and everything else Jenny Han has ever written. I usually never win stuff like this so I am too excited not to share it here!
And a week later when I logged onto instagram and @simonteen had announced me as a winner!
Tea & Book Chat: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before By Jenny Han (To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before #1)
I was so excited when I received a copy of To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han from my TBTB Secret Santa Michelle! I found myself so interested in this story that I read it in only two days. Our main character, Lara Jean, one of the three Song sisters, writes letters to all of the boys she’s loved in the past when she wants to stop loving them. Not that she’s had actual romantic relationships with any of them. She places them in a hatbox in her room and she’s basically living a nightmare when someone the hatbox goes missing and several of the boys start confronting her about the letter they received.
To make matters even more complicated, one of the boys who received a letter is the long time boyfriend of Lara Jean’s sister Margot who breaks up with him right before leaving for college in Scotland. I have no idea what I would’ve done in Lara Jean’s situation but I loved the way she handled it! I really related to Lara Jean as a character because she’s very family oriented and she enjoys staying home to bake cookies and reorganize her closet. We’re also both terrified of driving and would do almost anything to not have to do it. I loved the way that Jenny Han focused on the relationship between the Song sisters. My favorite character is the youngest sister, Kitty, who is more confident and feisty than many older characters I’ve ever read about.
Another interesting aspect of the book is that the Song sisters are half Korean so I enjoyed learning a bit about their culture. I always love learning about experiences that are different than mine and I thought the way Jenny Han included those cultural aspects worked really well. Being Korean didn’t define the characters, it was just a part of who they were. One of my favorite parts is when Lara Jean dresses up as Cho Chang from Harry Potter for Halloween because she’s tired of people asking what she’s supposed to be and assuming she’s an anime character.
Also, the love story was SO GOOD. As soon as I finished reading, I texted my friend Carolyn who works at Simon & Schuster and basically begged her to send me a copy of the next book when it’s going out because there is just no way that I can wait until June 2nd to find out how the story ends. I could absolutely see this being made into a YA rom com. Another part of what drew me to the book initially is the BEAUTIFUL cover. I mean seriously, look at it!