January 12, 2014 by Bernadette ~ The Bumbling Bookworm
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Publisher/Year: Speak, 16 July 2013 (originally published 2 December 2010)
Genre: Centemporary YA
Source: I bought it!
Other books from author: Lola and the Boy Next Door, Isla and the Happily Ever After
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. She is less than thrilled about boarding school in Paris – until she meets Étienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, he has it all – including a serious girlfriend. Will Anna get her French kiss?
What I Thought…
I must say, I was so nervous when I started reading this book; the anticipation was huge and I was afraid it wouldn’t live up to all the hype. Well, I’m glad I didn’t let my fears get the better of me! This book is just as amazing as everyone says it is, and I’m ridiculously late joining the party… For those of you that know me, you will know that this is a bit of a habit for me, but I’m glad I’ve finally been introduced to the awesomeness that is Anna and Étienne!
Oh, and what can I say about Étienne that hasn’t already been said? Not a lot, probably, but I’m happy to add to the collective swoons and sighs this character brings out in the best of us! I think Anna puts it best:
Any girl faced with daily attention from a gorgeous boy with a cute accent and perfect hair would be hard-pressed not to develop a big, stinking, painful, all-the-time, all-consuming crush.
I loved Anna! I found her to be such a relatable personality, particularly in the early stages of the book when she’s new to the school and isn’t being very adventurous with the food and venturing out into Paris. It reminded me a lot of when I first moved to Melbourne on campus at my university – I was always really nervous about going to meals (would anyone want to sit with me!?) and venturing out beyond the four walls of my room, and I didn’t even have the language barrier as an excuse! Like Anna, I eventually found my feet and made some really great friends who got me through.
The interactions between Anna and Étienne were so well written, and it was very easy to get swept up in the romance of it all. Like Anna, I was surprised it took her so long to realise her true feelings! I think she expressed it well when she finally realises what we’ve known all along:
I grip the edge of a sidewalk café table to keep from falling. The diners stare in alarm, but I don’t care. I’m reeling, and I gasp for air.
How can I have been so stupid?
How could I have ever for a moment believed I wasn’t in love with him?
I devoured this book in almost one sitting, and it was one of the most pleasurable reads I’ve had in a long time. I fell in love with the characters, the prose, and of course Paris! The only thing that irritated me a little bit was the lack of resolution in the Bridgette/Anna storyline. I think that’s more my issue than an issue with the book, as I’m one of those people who has to have everything tied up in a nice neat bow – I don’t cope well with cliffies or unanswered questions!
Stephanie Perkins has become an autobuy author for me, and I can’t wait to read and review the next two books in the series! Thankfully I’ve already got my copy of Lola and the Boy Next Door, and I’m sure I’ll be grabbing Isla and the Happily Ever After with both hands when it’s finally released.
Rating: 4.5 Stars