Meredith's Reviews > Anna and the French Kiss

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Rate this book
Clear rating

's review
Sep 07, 2010

it was amazing
bookshelves: contemporary-fiction, humor, romance, ya, 2011
Read from December 30, 2010 to January 01, 2011

Originally published on The Librarian Next Door:

There’s not very much I can say that hasn’t already been said about this fabulous, wonderful book. Nearly every single book blog I read has already reviewed Anna and the French Kiss and given it heaps of well-deserved praise. I’m pretty sure my review adds nothing to the conversation; in fact, I feel like I’m one of the last people in all of the book blogging world to finally get my hands on a copy. But this is just one of those books I can’t not write about, so please excuse the gushing that will follow.

The hype and buzz surrounding Perkins’ debut was so incredible and positive, I worried that Anna and the French Kiss couldn’t possibly live up to it (as has happened to me in the past). Luckily, Stephanie Perkins’ debut novel DID live up to the hype. Anna and the French Kiss is a witty, smart, hilarious, utterly authentic story about ordinary people who come to see each other as perfect, flaws and all.

There are, in my very humble opinion, many things to like about this book. There are Anna and Etienne, two exceptionally well-developed characters with real personality traits, quirks and flaws. There is the natural, slow growth of their relationship as they become friends, supporting each other through various crises and eventually embracing their mutual attraction and admitting their love. There is the near pitch-perfect writing, with intelligent quips and realistic dialogue that captures so accurately the angst of being a teenager, the excitement and fear of uprooting your life and the vast uncertainty that accompanies being a teen on the brink of so much more.

There are the little details, the tiny little things that add up to bring such depth to the story, like Anna’s collection of bananas and elephants or Etienne’s British-isms. There are fantastic secondary characters who come alive as vibrantly as the leads and who always add to the story, instead of taking away. And then, of course, there is Paris – beautiful, magical Paris as the backdrop for this book. A Paris that is so vivid and real, it might as well be a character in the book as well. A Paris that makes you want to put down the book (and that’s saying something) and hop on a plane RIGHT NOW.

Of course, it doesn’t hurt that Perkins makes some veiled (but not totally subtle) criticisms of Nicholas Sparks. (My apologies to those misguided among you who might actually like the Sparks, but those of you who are like me and bemoan the day he received a publishing contract, you know what I’m talking about.)

I try to write balanced reviews and temper my gushing with some criticism, but in all honesty, the only bad thing about Anna and the French Kiss was that it ended far too soon. Finishing this book was bittersweet; I wanted to cheer for Anna and Etienne when they finally got their happy ending because they fought for it and it was so hard-won. But I was also sad to leave them - and Paris – behind. I wanted to linger in Stephanie Perkins’ world for just a little bit longer. Believe the hype. Believe the buzz. This book lives up to all of it. Read Anna and the French Kiss and you will not be disappointed.

Sign into Goodreads to see if any of your friends have read Anna and the French Kiss.
Sign In »

No comments have been added yet.