Friday, December 17, 2010

Friday Lit Spotlight: Anna and the French Kiss? Yes, Please!

These are macarons, they are pretty and French!

Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins
Before I read this book, I was sure that I was done with my top 10 books for the year. Then Anna Oliphant came along and shook up my list! I'd also like to say, hey John Green, I was done with this book and seriously in love with it before you mentioned it in your latest video, so don't try and take credit for introducing me to it ...

Anna is off to Paris for her senior year. Her dad is a famous American romance author whose works are being turned into movies with teenage starlets in them (cough like The last song? cough) and he is obsessed with seeming more cultured, so Anna is being sent to an American School in Paris. Leaving behind her normal life and friends and crush-worthy co-workers.

And with that, you're off on a year's adventure in Paris! This is the type of book where every character is drawn so well that you want to know what happens to each of them after the book ends. Not only that, but the book is set in Paris for goodness sakes, the city of lights! There's lots of sites to see, food to imagine (macarons, croissants, chocolate... oh my), and opera singers in the next window that you can almost hear.

In a year where so many books featured paranormal characters of one sort or another, especially if the book happened to be a romance, what makes Anna and the French Kiss so special is that everyone is just normal. There are no bells and whistles, just honest and real emotions and relationships.Anna is not an angel or a vampire. Instead, she is a girl whowould make a great friend, and she makes an amazing narrator for a Parisian year abroad.

If you're like me, you may find yourself a bit depressed when you close the covers of this book. I am taking heart in two things: first, Ms. Perkins has two more books set for release that will involve some of the same characters at least peripherally. Second: the two main characters, Miss. Oliphant  and then her friend the American born/French named/British Accented/great haired/amazingly named Etienne St. Clair both have twitter feeds. You can find them here and here but be warned these feeds take place AFTER the book is finished, so they are *Spoiler* filled! Don't click until you're done!

So, what I really want to say is that  I'm all for a world where this Stephanie becomes as well known as that other Stephenie ... you know, the one I mean. It's time for a return to real and Anna and the French Kiss is a great way to start!


macaron image from inoc

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