Anna & The French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
5 out of 5 stars (formally 4)
This is the last book (non-series) that I'm going to review from 2011. I read it at the end of November (on the Overdrive app on my phone) and I just fell in love with it. Seriously, I haven't felt this way about a new book in a long, long, long time. I mean, there are definitely books that I have liked a lot and really enjoyed and that I would call a favorite. But nothing has grabbed me or enchanted me the way this one did. Well, then why didn't I rate it 5 stars, you ask? Honestly, I don't know lol...maybe I didn't want to seem too needy. :) That's it, I'm changing it to 5 stars!
I'm kind of mad I read this on the app now though, because I want to go buy it and reread it over and over and hug it and squeeze it til it's eyes pop out. O.O But that's okay, I will get it eventually and I got her newest book, Lola & The Boy Next Door, last weekend. I started it last night and I was hooked by page 28. Like, I stopped to tweet that I was in love with this book already lol. I'm so excited to find a new author!! I hope she continues writing for a long time.
"Is it possible for home to be a person and not a place?"
Okay, I'll stop gushing and tell you about the dang book now. :) Anna is all set for her senior year in Atlanta, GA until her dad drops a bomb and ships her off to a boarding school in Paris. And not Paris, Tx lol...we're talking croissants, menus and movies all in French, the Eiffel Tower and Notre Dame, French bookstores (omg I so wish!!), berets (okay not really). Anna is a bit peeved to say the least, but she quickly finds a new group of friends including a swoon-worthy young English American French (yep all 3) boy named Etienne St. Clair. He's got floppy hair, speaks French with a British accent, and shows Anna how to live and survive in Paris. There's just one catch: he already has a girlfriend. *le sigh*
You would think this is going to be a typical YA, romancey, pink book but it's not somehow. I mean yes, there's the teen angst and drama along with some hand-holding and longing looks. But Anna is also a smart, sarcastic girl who loves movies and plans to become a director or producer or something. And yet, she doesn't know France is like the movie capital of the world? That was the only thing I found hard to believe. St. Clair (as he likes to be called) is a witty, short guy afraid of heights and with some family problems.
I've probably made this book sound totally cheesy now and you're sitting there thinking, "geez Jenn, why would I try that when you've hyped it up so much? It's probably going to totally suck." And maybe it will for you. But what if it doesn't suck and it's totally awesome and you fall in love with it and Perkins just as much as I did? :)
And my (2nd) favorite quote from the book...I so wish this was true. I try to hold my sister's hand (at home) sometimes but she won't let me.
“I wish friends held hands more often, like the children I see on the streets sometimes. I'm not sure why we have to grow up and get embarrassed about it.”