I can’t believe the concluding film of the To All the Boys trilogy released on Netflix! It has been so amazing seeing Lara Jean’s love story come to life—a YA romcom trilogy—the past few years through Lana Condor and Noah Centineo. And this conclusion was utter perfection. It was everything I wanted to see in her story and more! But what changed between the book and movie? Well, let’s dive into some of the differences!
We start right of the bat with a big difference—the trip to Korea! In the book, Lara Jean’s graduation present is to spend the entire summer with her two sisters touring Korea and visiting their extended family. Something that she wasn’t entirely excited about because that would mean leaving behind Peter and all of their plans before they head off to college. In the movie, though, Lara Jean and her family (including Trina) head to Korea during Spring Break. This was obviously such a fun way to start the movie and set the tone well!
Another major difference? The colleges. The books are set in Virginia, and so the college Peter earned a lacrosse scholarship for was the University of Virginia, which is nearby their town. Lara Jean really wanted to attend UVA obviously for Peter, but also because she grew up around the campus with her mother and since it would still keep her close to her family. Her backup school was Willian & Mary instead of UC Berkeley, which she had been intending to go to until she got off the waitlist for . . . the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill! Once she received the acceptance, Chris whisked her away on an impromptu road trip to UNC, which ended up convincing Lara Jean to attend there (which would mean Pater and her would only be about 3 hours apart).
So while Lara Jean did not apply to NYU, she did still visit New York City for her class trip! Lara Jean and Peter visited bakeries and had fun in the city. Plus, he did his promposal on top of the Empire State Building by recreating the scene from Sleepless in Seattle. The awesome subway couch scene was sadly not present in the book, though.
In P.S. I Still Love You, we were blessed with Jordan Fisher’s portrayal of John Ambrose McClaren. He sadly did not make an appearance in this movie, but if you want more John Ambrose McClaren fix, he is present in the book a couple times as is Stormy. We first see Stormy at the beginning where she gifts Lara Jean a beautiful ring and of course some words of advice. When we see John Ambrose McClaren, it’s sadly at Stormy’s funeral as she passed away in her sleep. There we find out John Ambrose McClaren has a girlfriend and will be attending Willian & Mary in the fall. We see him again after graduation when all of the new graduates head off to Beach Week. This part wasn’t in the movie either, but one of the scenes from it made its way into it.
In the book, Peter takes Lara Jean to the diner after prom, where he has a surprise birthday party waiting for her with all of their friends. It’s such a sweet moment and gives Lara Jean a fun memory to end her night on. In the movie, they head back to her room where they get into a fight and break-up. This is a combination of the last night of Beach Week and the night of Dr. Covey’s Bachelor party. In the book, though, Lara Jean initiated the break-up because of Peter’s mom. And instead of giving Peter her hat box full of mementos, in the book, Lara Jean creates a scrapbook for him with all of their memories.
This is starting to get long, so let’s wrap up some of the smaller differences. In the book, Margot brings home her college boyfriend, Ravi, during Spring Break. We don’t see this in the movie, but we do see Kitty meet a boy in Korea and keep communicating with him after she heads home. For the storyline with Peter’s dad, he attends one of Peter’s lacrosse games where he meets Lara Jean. Peter eventually invites him to graduation, but he bails last minute. I liked the changes in the movie where we see them at the diner together, the start of mending their broken relationship. Chris and Trevor also do not have a relationship in the books, and Gen’s storyline isn’t there in the third book either.
Lara Jean’s dad and Trina’s proposal is also different—in the book, Lara Jean, Kitty, and Peter all help him pull it off on a hike. Lara Jean then spends a lot of her time planning the wedding, effectively taking her mind away from the stress of college decisions. She and Margot attend Trina’s Bachelorette party and Peter throws Dr. Covey’s Bachelor party. In both, on the night of the wedding, Peter and Lara Jean reunite and Peter creates a new contract for their relationship in Lara Jean’s yearbook.
Finally, the book ends the night before Lara Jean heads off to college. She and Peter head to the lake to watch a meteor shower. In the movie, we flash forward to Lara Jean settling into her dorm a NYU—with a new haircut!
So while this may seem like a lot of differences, the movie actually stayed very true to the essence of the story and brought to life the iconic moments. I reread the book right before watching the movie, and there were so many lines that I recognized right away from being word-for-word from the book. This movie was such a lovely ending to the trilogy, and I wouldn’t change anything about it!
Louie Mattoxsays:February 19, 2021 at 10:51 AM
This is such an interesting post! I watched all three movies this month and I loved them, I haven’t read the books yet, but I definitely want to!
Jordansays:October 12, 2021 at 9:13 PM
I love the movies so much (and the books too)! Such great adaptations!
Tammy Vsays:March 5, 2021 at 8:35 AM
I’ve watched the first one and liked it. I tried the books but she was whiny to me. After seeing the show I may go back and try again.
Jordansays:October 12, 2021 at 9:14 PM
I first read the books when I was in high school and loved them! The movies are so fun!