Sunday, October 25, 2015

Review: Anna and The French Kiss

Stephanie Perkins - Anna and The French Kiss
Published: December 2nd, 2010 by Dutton Juvenile (first published January 1st, 2010)
Pages: 372
Genres: Contemporary, Young Adult
Find on: Amazon, Goodreads, Book Depository
Rating: 2/5

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?

~

(I removed a star. I think I was feeling generous yesterday.)

Confession: I used to love this.

I brought the book when it first published in 2010 - doesn't that just scream, OG? - and used to carry it around everywhere. Today, that book jacket is literally falling apart and I've had to tape it over since.

I liked Anna because she was awkward. Since I hadn't read the book in a few years, I've always kept that same view of her. A realistic awkward, one we could all relate to. And even though he was shrimpy, St. Clair was a babe. Literally, I loved the book. I even recommended it to a stranger at the eye doctor. So when I saw people beginning to hate on it, I was completely mortified.

After Anna is deposited in Paris by her loving parents, she couldn't think of anything worse. She would much rather be home. So she cries dramatically into her pillow, waiting for her prince, her parents to rethink their decision. However, a kind girl, Meredith, knocks at her door and offers her hot chocolate.

Before we know it, Anna has taken Meredith up on the offer and is settled in her tiny room, learning about her friends, her family, and her love for The Beatles and colorful jewelry. But after an interruptive call, Anna decides to take her leave and bumps into a wall - I mean, boy. This...this is Étienne St. Clair.


Anna falls for him in the same second. That hair. Those clothes. That accent. The next day, she meets the reunited squad at lunch, Rashmi and Josh, who are dating, and Meredith and St. Clair again. It's soon discovered Meredith is fiercely enamored with St. Clair as well. Though St. Clair has a girlfriend, Ellie, albeit a well-hated one, Anna and Meredith pine freely after St. Clair while his actual girlfriend unknowingly continues her studies at Parsons.

Anna's obsession with St. Clair was borderline stalkerish. She talked about how gorgeous he was, how she wanted to maul Ellie, and how his hair was a work of God. I envisioned it looking something like this:


So after St. Clair makes a drunk love we be all night confession, Anna is befuddled. But instead of attempting to defuse St. Clair's incoming attempts at a romance, Anna encourages them. They share a bed, hold hands, Anna grinds on him in a club, and St. Clair still doesn't leave his girlfriend.

I will never condone cheating. I don't care if she cheated first, if she's a partier, a busy college student, whatever. If your man left you at home with eight kids and deserved to be cheated on. No. Absolutely not. It's unacceptable and unforgivable. The emotional trauma you can inlay on your partner with cheating is monumental. And if you are a cheater, go live in a garbage can with the rest of the fucking trash.

Ironically, Anna's hometown friends sneak behind her back and bone, leaving her in well-deserved tears. But the amount of judging and whining, she does throughout the novel is intolerable. When she was in Paris, she wanted to be home. When she flew back to Atlanta, though, she was all like, "Paris is my home! Take me back to Paris!"


Anna also shits on every girl who casually approaches St. Clair. Or any girl in general. The fact that she not only hates on every school at school but the girls in her clique, too. Seriously, I can't.

Seriously, I don't know what I saw in this before. Though I love the side-characters immensely, Meredith and Rashmi are absolutely lovely. Like I said, Josh is ruined for me after reading ISLA. I wish Stephanie had written a novella for Ellie. I feel like she was unfairly judged. Even Anna's Atlanta friends aren't all that bad. Anna's ex-boyfriend, Matt, sounded somewhat cute and she bashed him continuously. I know. WTF.

This would've been a recommend if I were still fifteen. Sadly, not today. Lola and The Boy Next Door is next on my radar. Later, cupcakes!
~

16 comments:

  1. Thank you HELLO! When I read this, I think last year, it was in the middle of the hype of the release of Isla. Everyone was screaming about how it was so good, and yadda, yadda, so I decided to dive in and I was left a bit disappointed. I didn't care for Anna, like at all, I mainly just liked St.Clair and his bestfriend. I'm not a big fan of fluffy contemporary, I like mine a bit more realistic AND a bit darker, but yeah I get you allll the way with this one!

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    1. I used to love St. Clair's best friend, Josh, but after reading ISLA, he became so gross. And I like all aspects of YA, really, but I definitely agree! The realistic aspect is so important.

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  2. Omigooooodnessss Peach, I'm sorry that your views of this book changed! It just shows we grow and learn I guess. ;) I TOTALLY agree with you - I couldn't stand reading Anna and the French Kiss because of the cheating, and the hating, and just the main characters in general. Not to mention she was a wooden plank with the worst personality. I like the covers of this series, but I wouldn't be caught touching any of the books with a 10-foot pole. Awesome review!

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  3. "A wooden plank with the worst personality." YES. So, so true! Thanks, Aila! :D

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  4. This is EXACTLY why I don't want to reread these books! I read them (the first two only) in 2011 and ADORED them, but I'm 99.9% sure I'll hate them with a burning passion if I tried them again now. The girl-on-girl hate and cheating will make me want to squeeze her eyeballs out.

    Aimee @ Deadly Darlings

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    1. OMG SAME. When I first read ANNA and LOLA, I was absolutely infatuated. But when I finally got hold of ISLA, I realized the error of my ways. The ANNA trilogy is just so full of girl-hate.

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  5. Thank you! I had so many similar feelings. I HATED Anna and St Clair. I see people talk about how much they love him and I just don't get it. I couldn't get over the part when they sleep in the same bed. Also his reasoning for not breaking up with his girlfriend? Cry me a river. I couldn't get past the cheating bits in this one. This is why I'm scared to reread books sometimes. I loved Lola and the Boy Next Door, though! You're making me nervous for Josh. I had such high hopes for him. XD

    Sarah @ Kerosene Lit

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  6. SERIOUSLY THO. I used to absolutely love Anna and St. Clair, then in this re-read, I have no idea what I was thinking. The cheating! The girl-hate! I loved Lola and The Boy Next Door, too! I think it's my favorite in the series. And OMG, you seriously have to read ISLA. It'll totally traumatize your view of Josh. lol.

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  7. Yeah...sometimes our perspective changes once we become wiser. I find myself reading more NA books than YA because they are more suitable for me and I'm actually enjoying myself HAHA

    www.lite-rate-ture.com

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    1. That's completely true! It's been a while since I've read a great NA but I'll definitely make sure to return to the genre, sometime. :)

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  8. Gah, this is all so confusing! See, I have heard like, two sides of this book: The "OMG AMAZING" side a few years ago, and then the "what is this fresh hell?" side now. I mean, I can't decide if I should read it, perhaps just to see where I fall?

    Okay so you're probably going to get mad, but the cheating thing doesn't make me not want to read it. I mean, I am not condoning it, but like, it doesn't automatically mean "bad book" for me. BUT the fact that Anna is annoying AF and is stalkerish... that is a different story. I almost want to read it for snarkability, but that seems wrong.

    I fear for the safety of Lola ;)
    Shannon @ It Starts At Midnight

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    1. Literally, I transitioned from that. lollll. I used to obsessively loooove the ANNA trilogy, then in this recent re-read, I was like, "Ugh. What was I thinking?!"

      Not at all! I think if Anna were to repel a reader, it'll definitely be because of her whininess. She does have an occasionally snarky line or two, though I definitely liked the side-cast more. You should so read it! I would seriously love to see your review! :D

      LOL. I'm currently reading it. Dare I say? It's not terrible!

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  9. It sucks you didn't like this book! I loved it, I found that even though Anna was kind of annoying it was still perfectly cliche. Too bad...also, nice header it's a cute picture!

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    1. I think I grew out of it. I used to sincerely love everything about it but things like (i.e. the girl hate, the cheating) were major turnoffs. Thanks, Claire! :D

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  10. I'm sorry your review of this book changed. I really loved it. Great review! Did you like Lola and Isla though?

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