Saturday, December 18, 2010
Fresh New Voice of YA- Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
"Anna was 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. So she's less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris--until she meets Etienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Etienne 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? Stephanie Perkins keeps the romantic tension crackling and the attraction high in a debut guaranteed to make toes tingle and hearts melt."- summary from Amazon
I absolutely cannot say enough good things about this book. When I finished it, I actually turned my computer back on to tweet about how much I loved the ending. That's how much I loved this book.
Anyway, I was really excited for this book because I love romantic comedies and the cover was really cute, but this book is not fluffy or anything. What I love about it is that I feel like it breathes new life into this genre- the story is compelling, deals with some real issues, the characters are well written and have flaws and everything is just realistic. It's just an amazing book; Perkins has a fantastic debut on her hands.
The romance is handled so well and is in a similar vein to Sarah Dessen. St. Clair is completely swoon-worthy, though he's not perfect. Neither is Anna, and that makes it a great story to read. Plus, St. Clair has a girlfriend so there's that added on. What I liked with this is that St. Clair and Anna started out as friends and are friends for a lot of the book. It's not a simple, clear cut romance, which can be usually seen in other YA titles; there are obstacles, arguments, and the whole "can we be more than friends?" thing.
The relationships between all the characters in this book are so well-defined and the interactions all make sense and are natural. I love Anna and her friends at SOAP. They're so funny, loyal, and are so realistic.
I also want to point out how much I wanted to punch St. Clair's dad, but that's probably not news to anyone who's read the book because that's my usual solution for a character that angers me. I'm like "Why don't you all just go take a plane and take him out?! Strength in numbers!" Sometimes I do think violence is the answer, but Perkins finds a less-violent way to deal with it. Good for her.
Overall, this is definitely a good book for the winter time (or, really, any time) because you can make some hot cocoa and curl up with this great book. You won't want to put it down. Perkins has gained a fan for life.
FTC: Received ARC at ALA (and it's now signed!). Link above is an Amazon Associate link; any profit goes toward funding contests.