Anna and the French Kiss
by Stephanie Perkins
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. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Étienne has it all…including a serious girlfriend.
But in the City of Light, wishes have a way of coming true. Will a year of romantic near-misses end with their long-awaited French kiss?
Anna and the French Kiss has been on my TBR for a very long time. I was gifted an ebook a while ago and still hadn’t sat down to read it. I don’t read contemporary often but I’ve heard so much about this one that I wanted to get to it eventually. So, I picked it as my July #RockMyTBR book!
What I liked:
I loved that through Anna I was able to travel to Paris. I’ve only been to a small southern town in France when I did a side trip while I had been in Spain. It was lovely but I still dream of going to Paris! Stephanie made Paris accessible to people like me who are only familiar with major landmarks (Eiffel Tower, Louvre, Arc De Triomphe & Notre Dame). I really felt I learned things about the city but it was made fun by the way the book was written. This was my favorite part of the book, hands down!
- The easy writing style
- That I read it in a day! Yay! (most of my ginormous fantasy books never get read in 1 day)
What I didn’t like:
Before I get into what I didn’t like, let me say that this part of my review will contain spoilers. So if you haven’t read this book please stop here and note that I did have a BIG problem with this book and I keep struggling with how to rate it. For now, I’m giving it a 3 stars.
- The Romance
Anna travels to Paris against her wishes because her dad wants her to experience something new. I slightly was annoyed at her attitude of not wanting to spend a year in Paris. It’s PARIS! But, I get it, she’s alone and away from her parents and she did eventually make friends and learn to love it there.
She meets Étienne St. Clair, a charming and cute guy who was born in the US, raised in England and who’s dad is French. I actually loved the beginning of Anna and Étienne’s friendship. They immediately clicked and Étienne was very charming and their dialog was adorable. He showed her around Paris and helped her feel like she belonged.
BUT he had a girlfriend.
I get that his relationship was falling apart but I got so annoyed that Étienne didn’t dump his girlfriend sooner. His excuses of “they’ve been together forever”, “I can’t handle change right now” weren’t sufficient for me.
He argued that he dropped hints to Anna of his affections but that she rejected him. Which, to be honest, she did NOT! She made it clear multiple times that she had feelings for him and even told him MULTIPLE times she didn’t want to be his friend because he STILL had a girlfriend.
It’s sad to me because this had such potential but I do not like at all how Stephanie executed the romance here. Étienne needed to have dumped his girlfriend much sooner than he did in the book. He didn’t dump her until he and Anna made out in the park.
Anna tried her hardest to keep appropriate boundaries between them because he was seeing someone.
I loved that I read this book in one day but then I finished feeling a bit ticked off. And every time I think about this book now, I’m still pretty pissed. HE WAS A CHEATER. I’m sorry but this was not romantic to me. He needed to have said au revoir to his girlfriend right away when he knew he loved Anna.
I loved the writing style of Anna and the French Kiss and it was fun with great banter between the characters. However the romance in this book spoiled the story for me and I don’t plan on reading anymore books in this series. I don’t own them and this book didn’t motivate me to give them a shot. Unfortunately this book left a bad taste in my mouth but it did leave me with a stronger desire to visit Paris.