Review: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

Challenge criteria: The first book in a series you haven’t read


Anna has everything figured out – she was about to start senior year with her best friend, she had a great weekend job, and her huge work crush looked as if it might finally be going somewhere… Until her dad decides to send her 4383 miles away to Paris. On her own.

But despite not speaking a word of French, Anna finds herself making new friends, including Etienne, the smart, beautiful boy from the floor above. But he’s taken – and Anna might be too. Will a year of romantic near-missed end with the French kiss she’s been waiting for?

Image via Goodreads

What I liked:

I adored the idea of spending your senior school years education in a foreign country, and I think if this opportunity had come up for me I would have jumped at it.

It perfectly portrays the loneliness and confusion that comes with moving country alone, and having been in Anna’s shoes myself I really did empathise with her for the first few chapters of the novel as she tried to adjust to her new home and new culture.

What I didn’t like:

There were some parts that really grated me. I can’t get on board with cheating, so I wasn’t particularly rooting for Anna and St Clair to get together.

Why give a character a beautiful name as Etienne (the French form of Stephen) and then have everyone go about using his last name?

Anna is quite dramatic, and every minor upset is a huge deal for her.

Why was Anna so reluctant to learn French? You’d think if you were to live in a country for a year, you’d at least make some effort to learn the local language and customs to make life a little easier on you. I’m moving to Germany in two weeks and I’ve already started learning some of the lingo.

“I’m moving to California. For you.” NO. Wouldn’t it be a much nicer thing to do to move to California for your recuperating mother, than a girl you lusted after for a year?

Out of five:

Three. I think if you parked this in front of me in 2010, when it was first published and I was 18, I’d have eaten it whole. Today, it is seven years later and the world has made me hardened and cynical. Perhaps not the same effect.


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