Thursday, February 24, 2011
Title: Anna and the French Kiss
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Publication date: December 2, 2010
Genre: YA Romance
My rating: 5 Crowns
Anna Oliphant is horrified when she finds out that she has to spend her senior year at a boarding school in Paris. While many teens would jump at this opportunity, Anna doesn't want to leave her best friend Bridgette or Toph, the friend who might be something more. She also doesn't speak a word of French and hates that she wasn't given a choice. On her first day there however she makes a friend in Meredith, the friendly girl across the hall. Through Meredith, Anna finds a new set of friends including Etienne St. Clair, the gorgeous part British/French/American boy with the perfect girlfriend. St. Clair encourages Anna to step out of her comfort zone and experience life. As Anna begins to open up and enjoy Paris, she finds herself more and more attracted to her new friend St. Clair.
Anna and the French Kiss is a sweet and fun romance. Anna has a very distinct personality. I love how she enjoys old movies and is true to herself even when others might think her tastes are odd. She is a fun and quirky protagonist. I loved the development of the friendship between Anna and St. Clair although they did have some difficulties with miscommunication. I think Anna has a very authentic voice as she expresses confusion about her relationships. The attraction between Anna and St. Clair is electric and thrilling. The book is far more than a love story however as it deals with some heavier issues like family troubles and serious illness. No one is perfect in this book which makes it more realistic. Anna has to learn to trust and be forgiving and St. Clair has to learn to go after what he wants. Both St. Clair and Anna have fathers who aren't the greatest but Anna is able to see that her dad at least has redeeming qualities even when he lets her down.
The supporting characters are excellent, especially Meredith although at times she does seem to disappear in the face of Anna and St. Clair's growing relationship. The setting is fantastic and I loved the descriptions of the French cuisine! This is a delighful book, perfect for a cold winter night or a hot day on the beach. I would suggest this to fans of Maureen Johnson and E. Lockhart. Anna and the French Kiss is a wonderful debut novel and I can't wait to see what Stephanie Perkins will write next.
Readalikes: A Field Guide for Heartbreakers by Kristen Tracy, Kissing Adrien by Siri Mitchell, The Juliet Club by Suzanne Harper, Amy and Roger's Epic Detour by Morgan Matson, 13 Little Blue Envelopes by Maureen Johnson
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Royal Reviewer Angela Renee at 2:05 PM