Review: Anna and the French Kiss (Stephanie Perkins)

Product Details:
Reading Level: YA
Pages: 372
Publisher: December 2nd 2010 by Dutton
ISBN: 9780525423270
Source: ARC from forever ago
Read it in 2 days.



Anna and the French KissAnna 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 Etienne St. Clair: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he's taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home. As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near - misses end with the French kiss Anna - and readers - have long awaited?

I am going to do the unthinkable and say that I have mixed feelings about this review. Ack. Go ahead and gasp and tell me how horrid I am. I’m ready for it. Now, don’t get me wrong, I did enjoy this book; however, there were some things that keep me from proclaiming my undying love for it.

First off, I’m one of those pesky people that want all lose ends wrapped up. So when I didn’t find out what happened with the Dave and Amanda situation, it left me a little disappointed. Of course, this was such a minor element in the story that it didn’t take away from the overall book, but still. There were a few other minor things, but they aren’t really worth mentioning. Besides, I’m pretty sure it’s just me. I honestly think it’s my lack of interest in contemporary novels that kept me from proclaiming the utter and complete awesomeness of this book. For me to say that a contemporary read is phenomenal, slap yourself wonderful, it has to leave me speechless. Anna and the French Kiss did not leave me speechless, but it did make me smile at times.

What did I love about this book? Many, many things! First off, the setting. OMG. The author did such an amazing job with the setting. It was like I was back in France. Every little detail was so wonderfully descriptive. I could picture everything in my mind as I read. Instant love. In fact, it made me wish I was catching a flight to Paris right now so I could relive everything Anna and Etienne experienced. The way the catacombs in Notre Dame were described was perfect. The author was spot on… the entire time. I think I can safely say that Stephanie Perkins did one of the best jobs EVER in setting the stage for a novel.

She did an equally amazing job with the characters. Seriously, what is there not to adore about Anna and her crew? Anna was witty and self-conscious. She was great. I loved her and her raisin sized front tooth gap. Then there is Etienne St. Clair. Le sigh. Simply charming. I swear he makes me want to go around calling everyone “mate” and “bloke” while I wear knickers and stare at wankers. So much fun! He is a perfect book boyfriend. The remainder of the crew is also fun… very Joyluck Club-ish. They were a perfect complement to one another.

I also think it’s worth mentioning that there is a subtle theme in this story. It was a little unclear at first, but it became clear by the end of the story. I also loved that the English Literature teacher helped deliver this theme. Her lectures on translated works helped Anna discover a huge secret about herself, which translates beautifully to real life.

This was a great contemporary read. I’m not a huge fan of contemporary works, but I did enjoy Anna and the French Kiss. It’s a well-developed story with fantastic characters. A perfect beach read.



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2 comments:

Christa @ Hooked on Books said... .

Everyone is always talking about this novel but I still haven't read. Since I'm not the biggest contemporary fan I imagine my reaction would be similar to yours. I'd enjoy it but it wouldn't blow me away. Glad to know I'm not the only one!

July 17, 2012 at 8:58 AM
The Flashlight Reader said... .

You are not the only one! Sometimes I feel like a big ole freak for not having the same reactions as the majority of others. Oh well.
July 19, 2012 at 4:11 PM

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