P.S. I Like You

Book review by
Bess Maher, Common Sense Media
P.S. I Like You Book Poster Image
Popular with kids
Charming contemporary romance hits all the right notes.

Parents say

age 18+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 11+
Based on 10 reviews

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this book.

Educational Value

Shows how hard it is to write songs, but if you work at your craft, you can get it done.

Positive Messages

Don't jump to conclusions. Never change for anybody. Stand up for yourself. Be yourself. Love yourself. Never give up.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Lily works toward her goal of submitting a song to a songwriting contest. She doesn't put guys above her family and friends. She and her best friend get into a small fight, but they quickly work it out. She has some shortcomings, such as jumping to conclusions about people, but she's willing to be honest with herself about them. Even though she feels like an outcast sometimes, she never considers trying to change or hide who she is.


Cade calls Lily "Magnet" in freshman gym class because the balls are always hitting her, and the nickname sticks. A girl in Cade's group of friends steals Lily's private notebook and reads it publicly on two occasions.


Romance is the main focus of the plot, but Lily's passion for songwriting and her family and friends are also a focus. Lily passionately kisses the guy she ends up dating.


Cade almost calls Lily a "bitch" on two occasions but stops himself.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that P.S. I Like You, by Kasie West (author of The Distance Between UsThe Fill-In Boyfriend) is a sweet, funny contemporary high school romance. Lily Abbott is a self-proclaimed "quirky," "awkward," and "weird" girl. Just when she decides it's impossible to find a guy who likes her the way she is, she picks up an anonymous pen pal in chemistry class -- a guy who shares her taste in music and gets her sense of humor. The letters quickly become the best part of her week. The book's messages stress the value of being yourself, putting your friends and family before boys, and working on your craft to gain confidence. Teens commit minor transgressions, such as writing on school property, trespassing, and almost saying swear words. There's mild bullying when a popular boy gives a girl an unwanted nickname and another girl steals her notebook and reads it out loud.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 14-year-old Written bysw181615 s. March 1, 2018

p.s. I like you

i think it is a good book for teenager and it is a really good book for me
Teen, 15 years old Written byThe Angel Of Music January 8, 2017


This book is my all time most favorite book ever!!! It is a romance naval, so if you're not into romance then it's not for you. there are lots of mome... Continue reading
Teen, 13 years old Written byGilmoreGirlsFan July 5, 2020

Cliche Romance w/ Mystery

This was an enjoyable book; I liked reading it and the dynamic between Lily and "Note Writer" was written very well.

Cliche, but the element of myste... Continue reading

What's the story?

In P.S. I LIKE YOU, junior Lily Abbott refuses her best friend Isabel's efforts to set her up with a guy. "I'm awkward and weird and it's not fun at all for me or the poor soul who agrees to go out with me," Lily tells Isabel. Still, she's been secretly pining for a senior named Lucas. When her chemistry teacher won't let her doodle in the notebook where she jots down ideas for writing songs -- her passion -- she writes the lyrics to her favorite song on the desk. Someone continues the lyrics to the obscure song, and soon they're writing full-on letters to each other. Lily falls for this person who shares her taste in music, "balances" her, and gets her sense of humor, but she's afraid she could never be the cool, confident girl she appears to be on the page. Meanwhile, she finds an ad for a songwriting contest, the winner earning a scholarship to a prestigious music school. Will she muster the courage and confidence to enter -- and finally finish a song? And what will she do now that Isabel's ex has taken an interest in her?

Is it any good?

Parents and teens will like the message in this refreshing book of being true to yourself, even when you don't fit in. Lily is a non-mainstream teen who's not mopey or self-destructive. She has a loving family, and she puts her family, friends, and songwriting passion before guys. And even though her self-esteem wavers, she knows deep down that a guy she can't be herself around isn't the right guy for her. 

The resolution to the letter-writing mystery isn't a surprise, but it's not meant to be. The main thing is that Lily gains confidence and learns not to jump to conclusions about people -- and treat them harshly as a result. It's a fine message for teens and everyone.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about how self-esteem is explored in P.S. I Like You. Have there been times you wanted to change to fit in? Have you ever wanted to change for a boyfriend or girlfriend? Have you ever been bullied or bullied someone else?

  • Is it a good idea to change for a romantic partner? What kinds of qualities are worth changing for someone else? What kinds of qualities are not worth changing for someone else?

  • Does putting a boyfriend or girlfriend first, before your friends, family, and interests, make you feel good about yourself? Does it make that person like you more?

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