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 Etienne St. Clair: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he’s taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home. As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near – misses end with the French kiss Anna – and readers – have long awaited?

Anna and the French Kiss is a book I’ve heard a lot about. A lot, a lot, a lot. Everyone who’s read the book seems to have loved it and I was really looking forward to reading it myself so I downloaded it for my Kindle and let me tell you, all of the reviews of the novel are utterly correct, it’s a brilliant novel. It’s Stephanie Perkins’ debut novel, but there are two companion novels coming out Lola and the Boy Next Door later this year and Isla and the Happy Ever After the year after. After the brilliant Anna and the French Kiss I can’t wait for the next two novels.

I’ve read quite a few books set in France this year – I’m turning from a person who dislikes French people into a regular Francophile (OK, not that far, but you know what I mean?). I don’t dislike France/French people as much as I did. Anna and the French Kiss is the story of Anna, who’s sent to France by her parents to attend SOAP (an American boarding school) for her senior year. There she meets Etienne St Clair who is a lovely mix of French, English and American (and sounds VERY swoon-worthy). I was taken by the novel early on and I couldn’t wait to carry on reading it each night and it’s one of my favourite books so far of the year.

What’s best about the novel for me was the romance. I’m a big sucker for a romance in a book and the romance in Anna and the French Kiss was something else! I’ve never been so sucked in by a romance and I read Chick Lit for a living. Stephanie Perkins really knows how to make me swoon and I just… the romance was just so GOOD! So ROMANTIC! I was swooning and happy and I just wanted to race to the end to complete the novel. (I stayed up past midnight finishing it, even.) It was such a wonderful novel, with such brilliant characters. I loved Anna, loved St Clair, loved Mer, loved Rashmi, loved Josh. All of them were brilliant and I loved reading about them.

There weren’t many bad things I could say about the novel, except Anna was a bit prone to some very teenager-y teenage tantrums. They were left to a minimum, thankfully, though and didn’t ruin the novel in any kind of major way; it was just a bit annoying how quickly she let her anger bubble over and spurt out! I loved the novel nevertheless and I seriously can’t wait for Stephanie’s next book. She’s a hugely talented writer and I’m really pleased she put pen to paper. Man can the girl write a love story! I can’t wait to see how Anna pops up in the companion novels and I’m looking forward to meeting Lola and re-meeting(!) Isla!

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