It’s no secret how much j’adore Stephanie Perkins’ debut novel, Anna & the French Kiss, so it was an easy decision to make it our February Book of the Month. We got to chat with the fabulosity that is Stephanie Perkins for a quick Q&A…
Anna and the French Kiss (as its name suggests) is set in France – what made you opt to set it there? Would you consider setting a book in another city like London, Rome or *cough* Sydney? 😀
It’s set in France, because I had a dream in which I saw a beautiful boy sitting on the steps of the Panthéon in Paris, and I couldn’t resist finding out more about him! I’m very open to writing more novels set in foreign locales, but . . . I wouldn’t write one just to write one. I’d have to have a great idea or a great character first. There always has to be a reason.
What are your favorite and least favorite moments in AATFK?
I don’t have a least favorite moment, though it was difficult to write the scene that takes place in the patisserie (not because of the desserts, but because of the content of the conversation). My favorite moment is easy — their first kiss! Swoon!
Is there a secret about one of your characters you can share with us?
Rashmi was originally two characters: Rashmi and a girl named Jennifer, who was dating Josh. Both characters were reading flat, so I combined them into one, and BOOM. An interesting character. Combining characters is one of my favorite writing tricks, something I use in almost every story I write or every critique I give. It adds instant depth.
You’ve said on your blog you think books should have more kissing in them (I couldn’t agree more), what’s the best kiss you’ve ever seen, read or had?
Oh, heavens. What a great question! The best kiss is the first one I shared with the man who became my husband. We met online, and we lived across the country from each other, and we didn’t get to meet in-person for nearly five months. When he stepped off the airplane, we didn’t even speak — we moved straight into a kiss! We even had an audience, because he’d been telling our story on the airplane, and I’d been telling the people waiting beside me at the terminal. It was very, very romantic.
I know it’s still super secret but what can you share about your upcoming projects?
I wish I could tell you! Soon, soon. All I can say now is that LOLA AND THE BOY NEXT DOOR (September 2011) takes place in America, and ISLA AND THE HAPPILY EVER AFTER (Fall 2012) wraps things back up in France. ANNA, LOLA, and ISLA are companion novels, which means that each story was written to stand alone. But they do have character overlap, so it’ll be more fun to read them all!
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You can see our review of Anna & the French Kiss here.