Genre: Young Adult
Review in a word: Squeeeee
Opening line: “Here is everything I know about France: Madeline and Amelie and Moulin Rouge.”
Anna’s father, a wealthy writer of cheesy dramatic novels (think Nicholas Sparks), sends Anna to an American school in France for her senior year. France is cool and all, but really—her senior year? She’s not happy about leaving behind her friends and a budding romance with her coworker. But she makes the best of it, quickly making friends with a good group. And in that group is Etienne St. Clair—known just as St. Clair. He’s the handsomest guy in school, and he’s also taken. Practically married to his longterm girlfriend. But he doesn’t seem happy, and suddenly he and Anna are best friends. She can’t help but fall in love.
My best friend has been urging me to read this for a while, and she’s absolutely right. I’m now officially a fan of YA. This story was adorable and sweet, but it wasn’t too light, either. There are some hard issues that Anna faces: betrayals from friends, bullying and peer pressure, intense stress from school, and problems with parents. These are all things that high schoolers are dealing with, often for the first time in their lives. On top of that, they’re falling in love for the first time. Anna and St. Clair are fully-realized, relatable characters. And Stephanie Perkins’s writing is perfect—she exactly captures the blushing and butterflies and heartache of a first kiss and first real relationship.
Rumor has it Stephanie Perkins wrote Anna as a NaNoWriMo project! You can read more about Stephanie Perkins on her website.
Recommend? Yes! If you like YA and need a feel-good (but still smart) story, this is perfect.
You might also like:
The Fault in Our Stars by John Green
Every Day by David Levithan
Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell