Author: Stephanie Perkins
Publication: Dutton Juvenile (December 2, 2010)
Description: Anna was 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. So she's less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris--until she meets Etienne St. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Etienne 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? Stephanie Perkins keeps the romantic tension crackling and the attraction high in a debut guaranteed to make toes tingle and hearts melt.
My Thoughts: What a wonderful romance! Anna is sent to Paris for her senior year of high school by her father who is a newly rich novelist whose books have become hit movies. She leaves behind her mother, younger brother, best friend, and potential boyfriend. She arrives at the school to meet a wonderful young man named Etienne St. Clair who is just perfect - except he already has a girlfriend.
The story is filled with mixed signals as Anna tries to avoid falling love with him both because of her maybe boyfriend back home and his very real girlfriend in Paris. But Etienne does become her good friend. They have so much in common. He helps her become familiar with Paris and helps her to venture out and explore. They both have fathers that they are unhappy with - hers is a shallow, poseur who has abandoned his family; his is a controlling flirt who dominate both Etienne and his mother.
When Etienne's mother is diagnosed with cancer, his father refuses to let him go home to visit her. Anna and his other friends at school try very hard to be there for him. Both Anna and Etienne are left in Paris for Thanksgiving vacation and they spend a lot of time together getting to know one another. But after everyone is back, Etienne seems to back off again.
This is a clear case of miscommunication on both their parts. Both are afraid to put themselves out there emotionally. It was still a very touching love story. I will be passing this on to my students who love romance. I know they will be as swept away as I was and, like me, will be hoping for a trip to Paris to see if the man of their dreams is there.
"Huh?" I have such a way with words. I should write epic poetry or jingles for cat food commercials.
He smiles. "Place your feet on the star, and make a wish."
"Oh. Okay, sure." I place my feet together so I'm standing in the center. "I wish--"