Monday, June 20, 2011

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Who wouldn’t love a year of study abroad? How about your senior year of high school? You would have to leave all your friends and everyone you know to travel to a country whose language you don’t speak. You would have to start over.

Anna from Atlanta (ha, ha!) gets to spend her senior year of high school at a boarding school in Paris.  The problem is, it wasn’t her idea.  Anna’s dad is a popular romance novelist and with his new money has come a concern to keep up appearances.  He decides to send Anna to the prestigious School of America’s in Paris.

Anna doesn’t even speak French, she took Spanish at her old high school in Atlanta. She doesn't want to leave her friends or her little brother, Sean. Faced with new situations, Anna must adapt and thankfully, her new neighbor, Meredith, invites Anna to join her group of friends.  There’s Rashmi, the beautiful Indian girl who’s dating Josh, the Senator’s son and a talented artist.  Then, there’s Etienne St. Clair, the gorgeous, charming boy who lives on the floor above Anna and Meredith.  Everyone’s in love with St. Clair, but he has a girlfriend.

Anna grows to love Paris, learns to speak French, learns a ton about herself and finds her true love. 

Although not a totally predictable romance, it’s still a romance that kept me up until 1am reading. The characters are complex and it is very well-written, especially for YA.

Themes:  friendship/relationships, loneliness, love

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