Author: Stephanie Perkins.
Published: December 2nd 2010 by Dutton.
Sort: Part one of ‘Anna and the French kiss.’
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?
“The more you know who you are, and what you want, the less you let things upset you.”
Anna’s parents are divorced and her rich father believes he has a great idea: he puts Anna in a boarding school in Paris. He tells her it will be a wonderful experience, but all Anna thinks about is what she leaves behind. A good job, a best girlfriend, her little brother and her crush.
On her first day, she meets Meredith and her friends: especially Étienne St. Clair. He is this perfect boy every girl wants to be with – and every boy wants to be him. He has the looks, the popularity and the personality. Only downfall is his egocentric dad who keeps Étienne away from his sick mother.
Anna starts to fall in love with him, but there is a little problem: he has a girlfriend, Ellie, and he isn’t planning on breaking up with her. He doesn’t want to be lonely and he is afraid for his mother. Will they ever get together or will Anna stay with her fling Dave?
As you can see, I wasn’t blown away by this book. This is the main reason why I try to stay away from hypes; most of the time, they don’t deliver. Was it cute? Definitely. Did I like the writing-style? Yes, I did. So, let me tell you why my rating is low.
1. Anna. Like all the other girls, she falls in love with Étienne’s looks right away. But, she is actually pretty easy with her feelings, because Dave is also in the picture – and not to forget the crush in her hometown. She develops a friendship with Étienne, but she keeps whining that his gorgeous looks distract her and that she wants more. What she had to do was stay the hell away from him, because he has a girlfriend.
2. Étienne. The perfect boy who has everything, but to make the storyline a bit more complex, throw in a sick mother and a bad father. Girls swoon around him and he never got the guts to tell Meredith that he doesn’t like her. Poor, naive girl. He stays into this bad relationship with Ellie, because he is afraid to be alone? Yeah, alright. I don’t like these perfect, pretty boys and he just wasn’t fair to Ellie and Anna.
3. All. the. drama. Anna and Étienne keep walking around each other in endless circles, making a lot of fuss and drama in the meantime. Fighting, staying friends, wanting more, fighting, blablabla. Just get on with it already! You like him, he likes you, the end. I have the feeling I actually read the same thing over and over again until they finally made their decision.
4. Alcohol. I don’t like drinking, but I know that it’s something personal. What I find distracting was the fact that the author made it seem like it’s perfectly normal to get wasted. Anna has never been drunk before and I liked that about her, but after the whole puke-and-lose-my-memory-situation I had to roll my eyes.
5. Mean girls and boys. There were so many stereo types. Every girl Anna doesn’t like is a mean girl (Amanda) and every boy Étienne dislikes is a bad guy (Dave). The only people in between are Meredith, Josh and Rashmi; who doesn’t really play a bigger role than making Anna feel better about herself.
I hope that I don’t get all the fan girls hating on me now, haha, because everybody seem to love this book. I guess it’s also because I normally don’t read these type of books. Perhaps Perkins should have thrown in some zombies to make it more spectacular for me ;)