release date: December 2, 2010
hardcover, 372 pages
intended audience: Young adult
source: purchased copy
description: 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. Claire: 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?Review: You'd be hard pressed to find a less than glowing and slightly giddy review of this book. So before you even read this review, I will tell you right now---you won't find one here either. Anna and the French Kiss is about as close to a perfect reading experience as one would ever hope to find. It's nearly impossible to focus on whether the writing technique was exceptional or the story arch was perfect (which I'm quite sure they were), because once you start reading about Anna and St. Clair and Mel and Rashmi and Josh---you are completely and utterly immersed in a feeling. This will be a book that I'm going to reach for time and time again whenever I feel like I need my spirits lifted, or I need to lose myself in a far off place, or I need the comfort of friends when mine are all away. Anna and the French Kiss is comfort food in book form.
Anna's experience in Paris was sheer wonder. I would love to go to Paris someday, but who knows if I ever will. The sights and surroundings are so beautifully described that I feel one step closer to being there and experiencing it. But that was not what made this story so great for me. Her experience with this little group of close-knit friends and with Etienne St. Claire were so spot-on and real and were about so many situations that eveyone can easily relate to. Things like facing a new and unfamiliar world head on and being brave enough to get out there and experience it on your own. And having friends you can really lean on in rough times and want to stand up for, and sometimes those that unintentionally hurt us, and the question of whether or not to forgive. And of course, falling in love, and the doubt and miscommunications and uncertainty that comes with it...and the wonder of finally getting there. The chemistry between Anna and St. Claire both as best friends and two people who are falling for each other is irresistible. There are all these delicious little romantic scenes that I found myself going back to read four or five times. And with Anna being overseas, and each of them being sort of one their own and far from family, it beautifully touches on the subject of "home" and what exactly that can mean to each person. What more can I say...it was just wonderful.
Ah, St. Claire---next to my husband, I don't think any man has made me laugh so much in a long time! :D
On a side note: I'm glad St. Claire face wasn't shown on the cover---ever girl should have to chance to create a vision of their own St. Claire! While both my daughter and I would love to see this on the big screen, I would be terrified of the casting of St. Claire. I think a lot of fans of this book would agree, it would be hard to live up to the picture of him in my head and also to pull off his impeccable sense of humor! ;)
Visit Stephanie Perkins site here.
Purchase Anna and the French Kiss at: Amazon • BN.com • BookDepository • Indiebound
One more side note: Another reason I giggled through this book---my daughter, who read this way before me, kept interrupting me to ask "Isn't is awesome?" :D