Monday, December 20, 2010

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Anna and the French Kiss
By Stephanie Perkins
December 2, 2010
Dutton Juvenile, 384 pages

Anna was looking forward to her senior year in Atlanta, where she has a great job, a loyal best friend, and a crush on the verge of becoming more. So she's less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris—until she meets Etienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Etienne has it all...including a serious girlfriend.

But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss? Stephanie Perkins keeps the romantic tension crackling and the attraction high in a debut guaranteed to make toes tingle and hearts melt.

— description

Okay, so I know as much French as Anna did going into her Parisian adventure, and I was a little nervous about reading this book because of all the hype surrounding it, but my overall response this book is: Oui, s'il vous plaƮt!

Anna's voice was wry and witty, and the dialogue was quick and realistic. Those are the top things I look for in a main character (See: Darling, Jessica), and Stephanie Perkins did a wonderful job of fulfilling all my wishes with Anna.

That's not to say Anna didn't frustrate me. Oh my gosh, stop moping in your room. It's legal to drink at your age in France, Anna! Go have some wine and see the sights! But, then again, I like my main characters to be a little flawed, so I mostly found all that to be endearing.

[Potential spoiler alert!] I see the appeal of St. Clair (accent! worldly! funny!), but I'm not swooning. I think I like Anna so much that it was hard for me to root for what seemed like a hopeless romance. Not that the guy she left at home seemed like much of a winner, but...St. Clair has a girlfriend! Girl, you're young. You're in Paris. Go meet some French boy and have some fun till St. Clair comes to his silly British senses. Make him chase you a bit!

In short, this is definitely a book I'd recommend. Very impressed by Stephanie Perkins!

Post-read observation: I have never read a book about boarding school I didn't like. Seriously...aren't they the best? Also: Let's discuss how Anna's dad was totally Nicholas Sparks. Hilarious!

If you like this book, you might also like: Perfect You by Elizabeth Scott (because you are probably sick of me and all the Megan McCafferty talk by now)

Anna Reads young adult book blog


  1. This is on my list to read next once I finish VA :-) I am a little worried too b/c of all the hype - but I have faith it will be a quick, fun read! Thanks for the positive review.

    And I don't speak French :-\

  2. Something about this book has me on the fence...something that makes it seem too girly-girl. Maybe it's the title. Anyhoo, love your honest review of this, Anna! I think I'll give it a go after all.

  3. I really need to read this book, I haven't read a bad review yet though I do appreciate you mentioning the little things that bugged you, I like knowing those things upfront:) And I'm always a fan of books about boarding schools as well, I don't know what it is about them!

  4. Boarding school = complete win in my opinion. This is one of the books I plan on reading over the holidays.

  5. I was also on the fence about getting this book, but since I've seen so many great reviews, I've picked it up! Glad to hear you liked it!

  6. Speaking of boarding schools... I just reviewed The Candidates which takes place at an Academy. And I agree, they are interesting.

    I have been hesitant to read this one, but everyone has said good things about it. I guess I need to read it and find out for myself!

    Awesome review, Anna :)

  7. Wait... her dad is Nicholas Sparks?? Regardless, I've got to read this gosh darn book. The glowing reviews just keep rolling in!

  8. Nicholas Sparks was all that I could think of whenever she would talk about her dad. I enjoyed the book, knowing from the start that it would have a happy lovey-dovey ending. It did bug me a little that she was so head over heels for a guy that had a girlfriend. Overall, though, I think it was a cute fun read.

  9. Picked up this book after reading your rec, and I could not put it down once I started it. Thanks for the rec!

    In a way, I think Anna was a little like Zoey from Forget You, by Jennifer Echols, in that she was obsessed with a boy that wasn't really hers. I did like Etienne, but like Anna, I didn't understand why he kept going back to his gf.

    I liked Perkin's writing, and was disappointed to find out that I have to wait a few more months to read her next book.


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