I was able to burn through my library haul fairly quickly. What did I think?
To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
I’m about 15 years too old for this book but I needed a palette cleanser/literary cotton candy. Lara Jean lives a comfortable sheltered life until the letters she wrote to all her crushes get mailed (I totally called how it happened BTW). Now shenanigans ensue as Lara Jean lives with the consequences.
It was exactly what I expected it to be. Light, fluffy fun that doesn’t hit too hard or make you think. There is no existential crisis of the world ending or someone’s world view getting rewritten with a hard truth or someone dying. Lara Jean is very sweet and a bit like myself when I was her age. Her biggest concerns are what her peers think about her and taking care of her family, although I would have handled certain situations a bit differently.
If you like the sound of it, you’ll probably like the book. I set my expectations at face value that they were met. 3 out of 5 stars. If I was the target market or had this book 15 years ago, I might have loved it then. Now, it’s good for what it is.
Age of License by Lucy Knisley
Lucy Knisley was in her early 20s when she had a European adventure. I really enjoyed her art style. I was never confused by the structure. Despite not looking like ‘traditional’ comics, Knisley did a great job of creating the comic in a way that the eye naturally follows.
I was impressed with how honest she was about what she was thinking and feeling as she had this adventure. Not everyone is so confessional with their storytelling. It created a closeness with the reader and Knisley. I liked the mix of color and B&W. The sketches she made while living it would be B&W but she was able to give us full color glimpses of her adventure.
I really enjoyed the message that you should go out and have adventures, make mistakes, find new experiences, and discover yourself. I’m beyond that place in my life for the most part but I can see what several folks on BookTube were very excited about this. 4 out of 5 stars.
Displacement by Lucy Knisley
I loved this one because it gives a younger audience a better idea of what it’s like dealing with ailing loved ones. My mom was in charge of my grandfather’s care at the end of this life. While I didn’t have to get my hands as dirty as Lucy Knisley did, it gave me a better picture of the harsh realities.
I thought what she did was incredibly kind and gave her lovely memories of her grandparents while she still had them. My grandfather lost his ability to walk, wasn’t much of a joiner, and had no desire to go anywhere. When he first came to live near us, he was the same weight Taft was when he got stuck in the tub and his mind was fading fast. I wish I could have known my grandmother better. I’m told she was a battleaxe but adored me. I wonder how she and I would have gotten along as I got older.
While I appreciate how exhausting and difficult it was, I’m envious that Lucy got to take this trip. A must-read for anyone in their 20s and 30s to get a preview of coming attractions. 5 out of 5 stars.