Sunday, 8 September 2013

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephine Perkins

“I mean, really. Who sends their kid to boarding school? It's so Hogwarts. Only mine doesn't have cute boy wizards or magic candy or flying lessons.”

Anna and the French Kiss has become one of my all time favourite YA books. I started and finished it all in one day, I haven't been so captivated and entranced by a book in such a long time. The romance is beautiful and the story line is sweet and endearing. I could harp on and on about this book all day and believe me I have been to my friends. It made my happy, I think I actually read this book with a huge grin on my face it was that good.

Anna is shipped off to boarding school by her father and she hates it, she is homesick and lonely.Anna is upset that her father has pulled her away from her best friend and a possible love interest, and the fact that she can't speak any French has left her feeling isolated and insecure. And then she meets a great host of characters, including the charming St Clair, who drag her out of her dorm room to experience the wonders that the city of Paris has. As the story progresses Anna and St Clair develop a beautiful friendship that starts to turn into more, with plenty of obstacles to overcome are Anna and St Clair brave enough to take the leap into something more?

I absolutely adored Anna, she was the type of female protagonist that I could find myself relating too, the girl with the raisin sized gap in her teeth and a stripe in her hair, she was imperfectly perfect. She is shy but has a witty and sarcastic side to her as well. I loved how well Stephanie balanced Anna's homesickness with her excitement to explore a new city, she is the type of character that I find myself becoming connected too, when she is embarrassed I feel embarrassed right along with her and that is a credit to Stephanie to create that type of connection. Anna is sweet and adorable, she over thinks everything down to the tiniest moment and sometimes I wished she would have been a little more perceptive to St Clairs feelings but I think that's one of the things that made the story so special watching there relationship grow throughout the course of the book was beautiful.

“I wish for the thing that is best for me.” 

St Clair was definitely swoon worthy, unlike a lot of other reviewers I didn't get the whole English accent thing, well that being because I am English and its nothing special to me but I do get what makes everyone give him the title of hottest male character. Unusually for a male lead he is actually a sweet, kind and caring guy, at first you can tell he honestly just wants to be a friend to Anna but as they become closer, especially over thanksgiving when they are running through Paris together having the time of there lives you can see the relationship switch but he never makes a move. Yes he has a girlfriend but he does try to do right by her, he tries to work on their relationship but this connection with Anna is always at the back of his mind.

“Why is it that the right people never wind up together? Why are people so afraid to leave a relationship, even if they know it's a bad one?” 

Like Anna St Clair is imperfectly perfect, he has a rubbish relationship with his father and even though he is definitely attractive he does has his imperfections, Stephanie has created two leading characters that are human, they aren't perfect, they both make mistakes but they learn from them and that's what makes them perfect.
Stephanie has created a whole bunch of characters that are just wonderful, you really feel a connection to all of them, they each bring something to the story.

Its not only the characters that makes this book it is also the writing, Stephanie has an amazing way with words, she creates breath taking images of Paris, that you can feel coming alive through the pages. She has turned such a simple plot into something extraordinary, you can feel the tension and the emotions of the characters as they all struggle to come to terms with there feelings, the story is dramatic in its simplicity and yet its so realistic, I could actually imagine this happening. Its Stephanie's writing that creates such an emotional response in her readers, she creates a connection between her characters and her readers unlike other authors.

This book was a breath of fresh air, it was beautiful and heartbreaking and made me want to go back to Paris and have the same experiences as Anna. I wish I could express how much I loved this book, it was beautiful and mesmerizing, Stephanie just has a way with words that creates a world and characters that I would love to experience and to know. Anna is a real character, she sees the world in such a realistic way and honestly she has a rather negative view of it that I can relate too, she suffers from anxiety and stresses about such small things. I feel like I've known Anna a lot longer than a few hundred pages. Considering I'm not normally one for what would be considered romantic fiction I think you can tell that I thoroughly enjoyed this book and maybe in the future I wont be so quick to judge a genre if it contains books like this one. Whatever you do read this book, I promise you wont regret it.

“The more you know who you are, and what you want, the less you let things upset you.” 

My rating: 5

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