We’re counting down the days until the release of Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins with a read-a-long celebration event! While I’ve just finished reading Isla and the Happily Ever After three days ago, I have not read Anna and the French Kiss or Lola and the Boy Next Door until nearly two weeks ago for the very first time. Even then, when I heard that there’s a read-a-long of all three, I jumped at the chance to join in on the fun on Twitter, and decided to take matters into my own blog as well. Today, I’ve got some tastey French treats in store, plus photos of the City of Love, and a photo diary of my Paris trip from 2006. The #IslaIsComing read-a-long is hosted by Andi’s ABCs, Cuddlebuggery (who made that lovely banner above), The Perpetual Page-Turner, Paperiot, and A Bookish Sinister Kid.
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. Clair. Smart, charming, beautiful, Étienne 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?
There’s more about France that Anna knows. In fact, a whole paragraph more. But I’ll leave the rest up to you to find out.
Latin Quarter (aka The Fifth Arrondissemont aka district)
“The buildings in my arrondissemont blend one into another, curving around corners with sumptuousness of wedding cakes [. . .] sidewalks , they’re lined with identical benches, and ornate lampposts, bushy trees ringed in metal grates, Gothic Cathedrals and tiny creperies, postcard racks and curlicue wrought balconies.” -Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss (pg. 19)
The School of America in Paris (aka ASP — or what Josh calls “SOAP”)
“The entrance is through a grand archway, set back in a courtyard with manicured trees. Geraniums and ivy trail down from window boxes on each floor, and majestic lion heads are carved into the center of the dark green doors [. . .] On either side of the doors hangs a red, white, and blue flag — one American, the other French.” -Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss (pg. 19)
“It’s massive dome and impressive columns rise up to crown the top of the neighborhood.” -Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss (pg. 19)
“It’s a place for tombs–of famous people. people important to the nation.” -Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss (pg. 168)
Point Zero Des Routes De France (translation: Point Zero of the Roads of France)
“. . .is a coppery-bronze octagon with a star. Words are engraved in the stone around it: Point Zero Des Routes Des France. . .It translates to ‘Point zero of the roads of France.’ In other words, it’s the point from which all other distances in France are measured. It’s the beginning of everything.” -Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss (pg. 84)
Ile de la cite (the Island of the City)
La Tour Eiffel
L’Arc de Triumph
Cinema Le Champo
Cimetiere du Pere-Lachaise
“It’s like a miniature city itself. Wide pathways act as roads through neighborhoods of elaborate tombs. They remind me of tiny Gothic mansions with their arched doorways and statuary and stained-glass windows. A stonewall with guardsmen and iron gates runs the perimeter.” -Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss (pg. 128)
One of my literary heroes is buried here. RIP, Oscar Wilde.
Shakespeare & Company
“Thick planks of creaky hardwood and a chandelier draped with twinkly strings of topaz crystals. They glow like drops of honey.” -Stephanie Perkins, Anna and the French Kiss (pg. 154)
Chocolat Chaud (aka hot chocolate)
Smoked salmon and ricotta cheese and chives
What St. Clair ate while grabbing a bite to eat with Anna.
Parma ham and fontina cheese and sage panini
And this is what Anna ate.
Banana Nutella Crepe
Fun fact: don’t judge, but… I don’t like nutella *le gasp*
“A puff pastry with custard.”
“Like Water for Chocolate Balzac and the Little Chinease Seamstress” by Laura Esquirel
Love Poems by Pablo Neruda
“Happy Thanksgiving,” he says, handing me my ticket. “Let’s see some dead people.”
While visiting my cousins across the pond in England and Scotland, I went to visit the romantic city myself back in 2006 for post-eighth grade/summer vacation, and reading Anna and the French Kiss made me feel nostalgic for Paris. So I dug up a few pictures from that trip and wanted to include it here. I went to more places than what I’m going to post below, but here’s a few of the pictures that I can locate right now. (Fun fact: it cost 11 Euros ($15 US) to ride the elevator to the top of the Eiffel Tower (at the time). I was also afraid of that elevator ride, but had a blast going down the stairs to the bottom.)
Well, hello! I’m Stephanie Perkins, and I write novels for teens (and for adults who aren’t afraid to admit that teen books are awesome). I was born in South Carolina, raised in Arizona, attended universities in San Francisco and Atlanta, and now I live in the mountains of Asheville, North Carolina. My best friend is my husband Jarrod. Our house is almost a hundred years old, and every room is painted a different color of the rainbow. We share it with a cat named Mr. Tumnus. I’ve always worked with books—first as a bookseller, then as a librarian, and now as a novelist. On weekdays, you’ll find me at my desk, typing away, downing cups of coffee and tea. On the weekend, you’ll find me at the movies, waiting for the actors to kiss. I believe all novels and films should have more kissing. For more information, please check out my F.A.Q.