Brandy Painter's Reviews > Anna and the French Kiss

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
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Jan 03, 11

bookshelves: contemporary-fiction, young-adult
Read on January 01, 2011

This review was originally posted here.

I very much enjoyed the few hours it took me to read this book cover to cover. Anna's voice drew me into the story right away and it was very easy for me to relate to her. I felt like Anna's experiences being in a foreign country were just as realistically portrayed as her new girl experiences (I too have been paralyzed by terror in Paris, France at the thought of ordering off a menu). Etienne St. Claire is a great hero. He's your classic romantic nice guy but his character has a depth to it you don't often find in romantic chick lit novels. I think what I liked best about the book is how Anna and Etienne are friends. Friends who happened to be very attracted to each other, but their friendship is still very real. I loved how, through the character of Anna's father, Stephanie Perkins makes fun of Nicholas Sparks. And I'm all for anything that makes fun of Nicholas Sparks.

There were a couple of things that detracted from my absolutely loving the book unequivocally. For the first two thirds of the book I was really engaged and felt the communication between all of the characters was portrayed realistically. But then all the misunderstandings started to get to be a bit much. It was almost as if the author decided she couldn't resolve the situation until a certain time of the year had come or page number had been reached. The teenage drama and miscommunication in the last third of the novel became tedious to read because I felt like it was being forced. It just didn't flow as naturally as the rest of the book did. My other quibble is a minor one, but it tripped me up every time it happened. Eteinne, who has an English accent because he grew up in England, says "me mum" a lot. Each time I felt his character had been overtaken by an evil version of the Lucky Charms leprechaun. I lived in England for four years, granted it was a long time ago, but I don't remember people there switching out their my's for me's.

I definitely enjoyed my experience in Paris with Anna and Etienne and am looking forward to reading the companion novel Lola and the Boy Next Door when it comes out in the fall of this year.
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