Release Date: 1st January 2014
Genre: Young Adult & Contemporary
Read: 1st January 2018 – 3rd January 2018
So it has been four years since this book has been released and nearly three years since I first read it and let me tell you, I now have very different views and they are quite mixed as on the one hand, to a certain extent the story was enjoyable however at the same time it was too heavily focused around the drama and I have definitely grown out of that. I found Anna to be a very annoying teenage girl, at first, I kind of let her off as I guess anyone could be annoyed at being sent to Paris without having a say in it but as she started to get more whiny and hypocritical I just lost interest in her and her problems. Plus, most of the time I thought she was 14 instead of 17/18 by the way she acted and how she described everything around her. She did realise the mistakes she made and kind of apologised but to me, it kind of wasn’t enough and I still cannot support the problematic relationship that this book centres around.
Anna has everything figured out – she was about to start senior year with her best friend, she had a great weekend job, and her huge work crush looked as if it might finally be going somewhere… Until her dad decides to send her 4383 miles away to Paris. On her own.
But despite not speaking a word of French, Anna finds herself making new friends, including Etienne, the smart, beautiful boy from the floor above. But he’s taken – and Anna might be too. Will a year of romantic near-missed end with the French kiss she’s been waiting for?
Magical…really captures the feeling of being in love.” – CASSANDRA CLARE
“Very sly. Very funny. Very romantic. You should date this book.” – MAUREEN JOHNSON
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Okay, so lets just get the bad stuff out of the way, the aspects of this book that I really didn’t like, for instance, the way Anna kept reminding herself that she can’t see St. Clair in more than a friends way as he is taken and her new friend Mer has a crush on him and he is TAKEN! I have no idea why every girl in this novel was swooning over St. Clair if he was taken, am I the only one that has self-control and dignity not to put myself in a situation like that? Once I had a crush on a guy that was single but then I found my friend liked him and my instincts told me to stop lusting over him so I did, it isn’t that difficult and I feel like Anna didn’t even try. She reminded herself that he is just a friend and then a couple sentences later she would swoon over his hair or something else that she found great about him, so yeah, I didn’t feel bad for her when everything started to go downhill for her.
Another thing that actually scared me about Anna is her jealous side, how vicious she became when St. Clair once again ditched her for Ellie. I have no idea how I could forget the words she used to describe what she would do to Ellie just because she was with the guy she wanted. Lily from LilyCReads pointed this out in her review if you want to watch it click HERE, but it was very violent which sent shivers down my spine, just read this:
‘I fantasize about their break-up. How he could hurt her, and she could hurt him, and all the ways I could hurt her back. I want to grab her Parisian-styled hair and yank it so hard it rips from her skull. I want to sink my claws into her eyeball and scrape.’
Okay, so I might get jealous and angry sometimes at people but I have never fantasized about hurting someone like our main character does, which made me not want to support her in getting her dream man! Like how can you like her after that? Plus, she was a hypocrite as she hated Ellie for only being ‘slutty’ and with St. Clair, and then when Ellie shot her dirty looks for being with her boyfriend she was like why does she hate me, I didn’t do anything… OMG! I just could not deal with this girl!
One last thing that I really didn’t like is how shallow the relationships were in this book, no one was with someone they truly loved, they were only with them to not feel alone and to just be in a relationship. I found this disturbing, I haven’t ever been in a relationship but I don’t think I would want to be in one just for the sake of it. People were used by others to make other people jealous and I feel like the boys were very self-absorbed as they never realised that it’s bad leading people on if you actually have no interest in them romantically. Actual communication between the characters would have prevented all the drama that took place and the only person I actually liked was Isla and she was only mentioned three times.
Getting on to the positives, I did like getting to see glimpses of Paris as it is definitely a city that interests me and I loved that the stereotypes of Parisians were proven wrong as from doing my own research a year ago for my English A-Level exams I was surprised by how wrong the stereotypes are about Parisians. Plus seeing Shakespeare and Company bookshop made me so happy, it is definitely one of the places that is on my bucket list of places to visit! I liked that Anna wasn’t scared of going to the movies by herself as that is something that I have grown to do myself and it is a lot of fun, definitely try it if you haven’t as I bet you will love it.
I’m glad I have reread this book as it just shows me how much I have grown as a reader and how my views have changed. It was an okay read for me but nothing special like I initially thought, I think I let the hype get to me at the time I first read it and I won’t let that happen again.
What did you guys think of the book? Have you reread it? Did you like it more after you reread it or were you like me and you didn’t find it as appealing as you did before? I would love to know your thoughts and I hope you enjoyed reading my review.
See you soon 🙂