Anna Oliphant’s wants in life are simple: finish out high school in Atlanta, date her movie-theatre coworker Toph, and become a famous film critic. But then her father decides she should go to a fancy American boarding school in Paris for senior year even though she doesn’t want to go and doesn’t speak French. At all. As much as she wants to hate Paris and all of it’s non-English-speaking ways, Anna makes some fast friends and discovers that Paris might just be amazing. One problem: Étienne St. Clair, the boy who quickly takes over the role of her best friend. Her feelings for St. Clair turn into something more than friendship. But he has a girlfriend and she has a potential boyfriend back in Atlanta…so where does that leave them?
J’adore Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins (Speak, an imprint of Penguin)! You might not believe in love at first sight, but this was definitely love at first read. I don’t think I used the word adorable enough while I was reading so I’ll say it again: This book is adorable! I was immediately drawn in to Anna’s voice and Perkins’s fresh and funny style.
Anna and the friends she meets during her time at boarding school are rich with heart, flaws and depth, no one more so than Étienne. He quickly snatched up my heart and held it for the entire book. I loved watching these characters grow and discover.
In Anna, Paris is as much a character as it is the setting—vibrant, alluring and alive. Through Anna’s exploration of the city, Perkin’s gives the reader a tour of the City of Light that could be second only to going there in person. Paris was never very high on my travel bucket list but after reading Anna it’s right up there near the top. (Side note: If there isn’t already, someone should totally do an Anna and the French Kiss tour of Paris—I would so go on that!)
What struck me most about this book, though, was how well Perkins has captured that wonderful/awkward/exhilarating mix of emotions that is being young and in love. *swoon*
If you are looking for a great contemporary romance, this is the book for you. If you are having a bad day and need a pick-me-up, open Anna and the French Kiss; I guarantee you will instantly be in a lighter mood. What can I say? I am head-over-sneakers in love with Anne and the French Kiss!
♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ (5/5 hearts)