Reading Stephanie Perkins’ Anna and the French Kiss series has been an interesting experience.
Especially when I go on Goodreads and see the varying opinions on the books. Some love only Anna. Some, like me, despise Lola. Some, unlike me, dislike Isla. Some love the whole series, some hate the lot of them.
The funny thing is, each book depicts a very different kind of relationship. Anna’s story is about being friends first. Lola’s is about physical attraction, proximity. (Well, at least to me, anyways.) Isla’s is about idolizing someone and finding out who they really are.
And I’ve come to understand that what I like and don’t like about these books is indicative of what I think love is.
Which is extremely eye opening.
I love Anna because they are friends first. They pay attention to one another.
I dislike Lola because there doesn’t seem to be a basis for relationship, and yet they end up together. There was no chemistry.
And I love Isla because it addresses how even our loved ones are severely flawed, how dangerous it is to idolize and love them without considering their imperfections.
Coming from a someone who’s never been on a date in her life, this may sound like a limited understanding of what love is, and yes, that’s true. I don’t know, but at least I know what I want.
And people who like Lola found something in Lola and Cricket’s relationship that they think is valuable.
I’m starting to believe that there is at least one rom com out there for each person. Be it Anna, Lola, Isla, any work of Nicolas Sparks or John Green or Rainbow Rowell or whoever—each person in the world has a story of love and romance they hold dear. Because that’s what they think love should be.