Book Review

Review – Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

This morning I woke up earlier than usual, and happier than usual, and I wanted to read. I wanted to read for myself, not for an edit, not for a beta, but for my own enjoyment (don’t get me wrong, I LOVE my editing and beta clients! But sometimes, you want something else). I wanted something lighter than my usual haunts, something contemporary so I didn’t have to worry too much about the details of a new fantasy world, and something short(ish). So I swiped through my new kindle paperwhite, glossing over the bajillion fantasy titles I have, and comparing the book lengths of the others. When I saw Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins, I knew what I would be reading, it looked absolutely perfect.

I was the lucky recipient of a giveaway a while back from Of Spectacles and Books (Amanda is an absolutely lovely human being that you should be following and supporting), it was a paperback of Lola and the Boy Next Door. Not long after, Anna and the French Kiss (ebook) was on sale! Since I knew they were part of a series, I got it, because I have a need to read the first one first, that’s just how it goes. It feels like it has taken me a long time to get around to reading this, but I’m glad I finally did. I started reading somewhere just before 9AM and finished just after 2PM, so it was a pretty quick read for me, especially considering there was kid-care in there, too.

Enough about me, on to the book!

Anna and the French Kiss Anna is 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. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris–until she meets Étienne St. Clair. Smart, charming,beautiful, Étienne 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?(Goodreads)

I give this book 4 stars!

I really had a fun time reading this book. Within the first page I could hear Anna’s voice so clearly, I knew I was going to enjoy reading it.

Positives:

  • A light read.
  • I could hear Anna’s voice immediately, and I really enjoyed that the view and experience of Paris was hers. There wasn’t anything, as a reader, I was really expected to know (which is good, ’cause I don’t) about Paris in order to follow the story.
  • I was pleasantly surprised by her first interactions with another student (Mer). While there was the cliche mean-girl, Anna’s first run in was not with her, but someone who would become a friend, instead.
  • I love how Anna begins to refer to St. Clair differently depending on how she’s thinking of him.
  • A lot of the misunderstandings, experiences, and relationships seem pretty true/believable for the age-group.

Negatives:

  • I might have liked to see a *little* more of the girls hanging out with just each other, because I wanted to know more about Mer and Rashmi.
  • I felt like it ended kind of abruptly. I looked down and saw there was only 10% left of the book, and I was like, “Wow, really? This can wrap up that quickly?”

Other:

  • In the ebook there were a lot of missing spaces after periods. Once I notice something like that once, I notice it every time, and it happened A LOT.

***THE FOLLOWING CONTAINS SPOILERS***

Sorry about the bold warning — I thought someone might appreciate it, although this is a “romance” and there are things that are typically expected with that. Anywho…

Sometimes I find it more difficult to suspend my disbelief in a contemporary setting than others, so I am left a little cynical at the ending of the book. Of course if you put the girl who’s had almost zero experience with boys in a boarding school on the other side of the world, she’s going to fall in love with the handsome boy in her group of friends. The ending we’re left with seems to be a happily ever after, although in my mind I’m screaming because in five years, they’ll each be in love with someone else! But that’s why we read, isn’t it? To escape this world where hearts get broken so easily, where teenage love can withstand the test of time. Where our cynicism can take a back seat to light, fluffy feelings, if only for a few hours.

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