The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 Book vs Movie Review

written by Laura J.

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2 directed by Sanaa Hamri (2008)

The Second Summer of the Sisterhood; Girls in Pants; Forever in Blue by Anne Brashares (2003; 2005; 2007)

This sequel actually combines the following three books in the series! It doesn’t take too much from the second book but has a lot from the last two in the series. There is actually a fifth book that was released a few years later and I will be reading that later. Once I do, on Patreon I will make a video detailing my thoughts on this book series!

Book review

Overall, I liked these books a lot. They ranged from 3-4 stars for me I would say. They reminded me of Anne of Green Gables at times since they follow young women as they grow up and learn different lessons along the way and we see their friendship blossom as well as their romantic relationships.

Movie review

I didn’t like this movie as much as the first one, but it was impressive how they were able to fit quite a bit from the last three books in just one movie! Of course, the main four were amazing (though to be honest I was probably the least impressed with Alexis Bledel).

If you have seen the first movie and liked it, you should definitely check this one out!

2025 will be twenty years since the first movie came out, how cool would it be if they made a reunion movie! I know it would be cheesy but I don’t care, I want it!!

From here on out, I will be getting into the details of the plots which means there will be spoilers!

 Lena

Let’s start with Lena shall we? In the second book, Lena and Kostos are long distance dating but she ends up breaking things off because as time goes on without seeing him, she feels emotionally distant from him as well. He shows up in the states though, and she realizes her mistake and they begin dating again. Things are going great, but then he has to hurry back to Greece and later writes her saying they have to end things but he will always love her. He does the annoying thing though where he is like, we have to break up but I can’t tell you why, I hope you understand. Uh, no I don’t understand because you aren’t telling me! Ugh.

Anyway, when she goes back to Greece she finds out he is engaged to a woman he had had sex with and she is pregnant so he is marrying her and Lena is left heartbroken.

This is all briefly shown early on the in the movie, setting the stage of Lena having her heart broken by him when he marries someone else. Then in the movie, she is in an art class and this guy is flirting with her, then the guy ends up being the nude model for the class which makes Lena very embarrassed. She and this guy, Leo, begin dating and seem very happy. However, in the end they go to Greece and in the movie her friends make her meet up with Kostos who she never stopped loving and we see they are back together in the end.

In the book, Leo is a fellow student and to help each other in the class, on weekends they take turns posing for each other. This leads to them being intamite which is Lena’s first time. She doesn’t feel the same strong emotions for Leo though that she had for Kostos.

In the book, her friends don’t set her up with Kostos in Greece, rather she just finds him. While they do kiss, the book is more open ended. It seems like down the road they may be together but they both know that now isn’t the time for them to be together.

I liked her story more in the book even though the book has an annoying part where Lena says some people can fall in love multiple times, but others can only fall in love once. Implying that she can only love Kostos for the rest of her life. Uuuuugh so stupid! But I do like that they aren’t officially together in the end. In the movie she and Leo seemed to be a good pair and os it was annoying she chooses Kostos whereas in the book Leo thought of her as his muse so their relationship was romantic, but it was a little different because he was more excited about the painting of her, I would say.

Tibby

In the fourth book and in this movie, Tibby’s main storyline involves her and her boyfriend Brian having sex for the first time, but it leads to them thinking Tibby might be pregnant-apparently, they had never heard of the morning after pill? In the movie it is never mentioned, in the book it seems like Brian mentioned her taking a pill but she never does. Maybe that was the point with the book though, because Tibby kind of self-sabotages and this pregnancy scare causes her to become distant from Brian and ultimately breaking up with him.

Lena’s sister, Effie, then starts dating him even though he still loves Tibby and, in the end, Tibby and Brian get back together again.

We also have Tibby helping Carmen’s mom when she is in labor, because Carmen and her husband can’t be there. This is actually from the third book but I thought the movie did a good job making it work intermixed with the Brian storyline for Tibby.

Bridgette

Bridgette, or Bee, has a storyline that mixes book two and book four and leaves out her story in book three.

In book two, she finds out her father has been holding onto letters her mother’s mom had been sending her and decides to go see her for the summer and reconnects with her.

In the third book, she goes to another soccer camp, and sees that Eric is there as well and by the end the two of them are dating.

In the fourth one, she is with Eric, but over the summer she is doing a dig in Turkey. While there, Eric feels so distant, and she starts to have a crush with this other guy there who is 30 years old and married with kids. Keep in mind, Bee is only 18!! Barely legal dude, she’s too young for you.

Anyway, they make out but stop before things go too far and the next day the guy’s wife and kids show up and she feels horrible.

This is a growing experience for her and she realizes she had wanted to ruin the happy family he had because she is envious due to her not having a happy family of her own. The book reads, “Now she wondered. Did the fact that Peter had a family dampen her interest in him? Or did it inflame it? How chilling that her most destructive impulses should mask themselves as romance.” When she and Peter, the married 30-year-old, talk before the endo f the dig she sees how he isn’t growing from the experience and learning from it. The book reads, “As she said good-bye to Peter, she suddenly felt sad for him. He would do this same thing again. At some other place with some other misguided girl. He was already looking forward, shaking off the past—a past that now included her. She made a vow to herself not to do that.”

When hse goes back home, she makes an effort to bond with her dad and brother. Eric also leaves his summer camp thing early to be with her.

Carmen

In the book and movie Carmen is at a summer theater camp thing because her actor friend, Julia invited her along. Carmen at this point in her life has lost a lot of confidence and feels like she isn’t worthy of even being Julia’s friend.

In the movie, she meets an actor named Ian who flirts with her but she is unresponsive. During auditions, he pulls her on to the stage to audition and she ends up being cast in a big role. She bonds with Ian as they rehearse and things are going well until Julia tries to sabotage her by acting like Ian is into her. This, as well as drama with the friends, causes Carmen to lose the groove she had been in with acting. She then overhears Julia talking crap about her to the director. In the end, she realizes the truth about Julia, gets her confidence back once again, and gives an amazing performance on opening night.

In the book, she is wearing the pants and goes to watch auditions when one of the ladies in charge ask her to audition and she decides to do it. She then is cast to her surprise. Rehearsals are going well, but Julia is giving her the silent treatment. Until Julia decides to help Carmen learn the meter with how the play is written and being so focused on that, messed Carmen up in rehearsals.

She realizes that when she feels down, Julia is happy but when she was happy, Julia was down. She gets back to the basics with learning the script and moves forward knowing Julia was never a true friend. On opening night, the three friends show up and as true friends are, they are full of support and happiness for Carmen.

In the movie we also have her mom giving birth while all of this is going on. I preferred Carmen’s story in the book because I didn’t love the incorporation of Ian in the story and Julia using him as a way to mess with her.

Going to Greece

In both, Effie takes the pants to Greece and loses them. This causes the four friends to decide to go to Greece to look for them. While there the Kostos stuff happens, and in both they don’t find the pants. But they realize while at first the pants helped them learn to feel close when apart, as time went on, they were apart more often because since they had the pants, they felt like it wasn’t as important to see each other. They learn that the pants chose to be lost, so they would stop using them as a crutch.

Book vs Movie

For the first book and movie, I actually said the movie won over the book! However, with the sequel I will say I like the book(s) better. I like Lena and Carmen’s stories better in the book, and in general I just didn’t like this movie quite as much as the first. I would still recommend it though and I still want them to do a third movie!