Tag Archives: Petite Anglaise

French Kissing – Review

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French Kissing by Catherine Sanderson

Age: Adult

Sally is an English girl, newly separated from her long-time boyfriend, Nico. Living with her four year old daughter and going through the usual routine of work, teaching English to the French business elite, and having lunch dates with close friends is starting to reflect a life that Sally does not want for herself. In a bold move, she signs up for a year subscription to Rendez-vous, a French online dating site. Using Rendez-vous as a launching pad, Sally explores different avenues of her social life, all while juggling friendships and motherhood.

I first came across Catherine Sanderson by chance at the library when I picked up an ARC of her memoir Petite Anglaise, the story of her life in Paris and her blog of the same name. This novel, French Kissing, can technically be classified under chick-lit. Reading through this book I couldn’t help but think of Sanderson’s memoir Petite Anglaise and I imagine much of her inspiration for French Kissing came from her own experiences after moving to Paris from England. I could picture Lila perfectly as the Tadpole in Petite Anglaise. Despite the striking similarities, I really enjoyed French Kissing.  Sally’s character, although well versed in motherhood and work, is at times naive and insecure. There were times where I had to roll my eyes at Sally’s decisions and her interactions with friends and families. Much of the story felt very real. Sally was insecure about herself, insecure about her friends in ways that people naturally are insecure. Sally was not perfect, she did not have it all together and neither did her friends, despite what appearances may try to argue. Overall, I felt that this was a fun read, a better beach read really. The ending was too much of a Hallmark ending as most everyone got their happy ending.

I do think that its a shame this book isn’t available for purchase in the United States. I had to buy it off of Amazon because I couldn’t even find it on the Barnes n’ Nobel or Borders websites.  Its strange because the memoir, Petite Anglaise, is available in the U.S.

Book 11 of 2011

French Kissing
by Catherine Sanderson
Penguin UK, 2009
ISBN 9780141031248
365 pages
Book 12 of 2011

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Find this book at your local library

French kissing

Petite Anglaise – Review

We all start blogs for different reasons and for different purposes. I chose to start a blog to have a place to articulate my feelings towards books I’ve been reading, so as not to fill up my friends’ Livejournal pages with endless rants on books most have not (and probably won’t) read. Petite Anglaise started her blog as a way to reconnect with her former world, to a world separate from her daughter and boyfriend. As her blog developed and gained in popularity, the author and the online persona began to merge into one woman, trying to find happiness and love in Paris.

In her first book, aptly titled Petite Anglaise, Catherine takes us through an eloquent and wistful journey through her life as she rediscovers herself through her blog, her friends and her family. Based on true events, this story of Catherine Sanderson brings a new life to her popular blog. The book follows the span of a year, from the start of the blog, to Catherine’s settlement into being a single mother. She takes us on a special insider’s trip into her world, her life with boyfriend Mr. Frog and daughter Tadpole. Her love affair with frequent blog commenter Jim from Rennes, and the ups and downs of relationships that are all too common in any city, in any country.

The book a very keen first chapter that sets the mood of the book, her frustrations with Mr. Frog, her love for Tadpole and her incessant obsession with everything related to her blog. What makes this book more endearing, is that its based on a real person. Although there is always something stalker-ish about blogs in general, I figure whatever Petite doesn’t want us to know, she wouldn’t post on her blog and wouldn’t publish in her book.

When I first read the synopsis on the back cover, I thought to myself, “great, another chick-flick as a book”, but this turned out to be something more profound. Maybe its Catherine’s writing style, her warm tone yet sarcastic tone, her effortless skill with description, her vulnerability as a writer and as a person encouraging the reader to keep reading, to live vicariously through Catherine’s life as many people have done previously through her blog posts.

You can go to her blog to read about her from the very beginning and were she has ended up right now. As long as the blog survives the story can continue. You can currently pre-order the book on Amazon, it is set to be published next week (June 17th).

Find this book at your local library

Petite Anglaise

Petite Anglaise
by Catherine Sanderson
Spiegel & Grau ( June 17, 2008 )
ISBN 0385522800
296 pages