Saturday, May 14

Anna & The French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Anna and the french kiss
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 √Čtienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, √Čtienne 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.
I know this book has been out for a bit, but I’ll be honest. I really didn’t think it was going to be my cup of tea. Exactly why that was I can’t put my finger on. I know the cover seemed a bit cheesy to me at first, and not being able to see a bit more of the boy on the cover was a bit irksome to me. Regardless of whatever kept me away from this novel before, I’m glad I was able to overcome it and pick up this great read.
First off, I was pleasantly surprised at how developed the characters were- having such a unique setting in Paris could have given Perkins the write-off for having the characters be flat. However, Perkins went beyond static characters who were simply infatuated with Paris and being away from home- these characters had real backgrounds, real issues. I truly appreciated how Perkins took the time to give depth to even the smaller characters in the novel, such as Rashmi, who was suffering from being forgotten by her best friend, and having to deal with a rocky relationship.Perkins could have easily put Rashmi in the background, but her not doing so not only created a better novel, but also showed that Anna’s time in Paris was about more than a boy and the possibilities of falling in love. It made the book go beyond just being a romance.
Considering the main characters, I fell into a love/dislike (yes dislike, not hate) relationship with Anna. I loved how careful she was in developing her relationships, and how she had an independent streak, which was emphasized with her wanting to become a film critic. However there were times where she would be a little erratic in her attitudes about things- she would become a bit more emotional about things than I think she truly had warrant to. It also made her a bit childish at times, which contrasted with the sophisticated air that the book had.These things didn’t make me hate Anna’s character, but it did turn me off from her a bit.
Overall, however, this book was a great read. The storyline was progressive in a way that kept me interested and the characters felt fun and fresh without seeming over the top. 
My Ratings:
Plot: B+
Unique and fun, but not too complicated
Characters: A
Even the smaller characters were dynamic and interesting
Cover: B-
It’s just a bit too corny for me. The matching shirts, the Eiffel Tower in the background, are just too much. I would have loved to have had Anna and the boy holding hands while walking down the streets of Paris at night, or something along those lines.
Length: A
It moved a little quickly at times, but slowed down at all the right places.
A fun novel about an American girl in Paris (SATC, season 6, anyone??) I give Anna and the French Kiss:
Four Stars!
Anna and the French Kiss is available now:

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