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Monday, February 14, 2011

A Little Extra Romance - Music & a Review

Thank you to everyone who stopped in to read my excerpt from Beneath the Surface and left a comment.  I'm so grateful to have wonderful blogger friends who take the time to care about someone else's work.  I heart you all.

If you read the excerpt, the song that Cass sings is called "Set Down Your Glass" and it's by Snow Patrol.  The song is beautiful and romantic and I wanted to share it with all of you.

And if you want a review of a très romantique book this Valentine's Day, check out Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins.  How do I love this book?  Let me count the ways:

First, it's set in Paris.  Who wouldn't love to spend their senior year of high school at an American school in Paris?

Second, the main love interest (Etienne St. Claire), despite being American, was raised for a time in England so he has a dreamy British accent.  *swoon*  He'd be even more perfect if he didn't already have a girl friend. (Yeah, you see the problem.)

Third, this book will remind you of the angst, flutters and all the million other tingly emotions that came the first time you fell in love.  For a YA novel, it was surprisingly long - which is wonderful.  We get to experience all the false starts & near misses that can transpire over the course of an entire school year.

Fourth, it's probably the first book written in the present tense that I've loved.  It wasn't distracting, but instead was the perfect way to project Anna's voice.

Fifth, the characters are so subtly flawed and imperfect that it makes them perfect.  Anna is a neat freak and timid.  She's afraid to explore Paris on her own even though it's teaming with her beloved movie theaters (she wants to be a professional movie critic someday).  And Etienne is "short" and bites his nails.  And yet they're both beautiful and compliment each other on every level.

Can you tell I loved this book?  If you haven't heard enough yet, here's the Goodreads description:

Anna is 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. Which is why she is less than thrilled about being shipped off to boarding school in Paris—until she meets Étienne St. Claire: perfect, Parisian (and English and American, which makes for a swoon-worthy accent), and utterly irresistible. The only problem is that he's taken, and Anna might be, too, if anything comes of her almost-relationship back home.

As winter melts into spring, will a year of romantic near-misses end with the French kiss Anna—and readers—have long awaited?
In short, this book takes home a highly-coveted HFAC rating - that's 5 out of 4 Greek coins! Go hence and get ye a copy!