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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

My Thoughts: French Kissing by Catherine Sanderson

Name: Sally Marshall
Status: Single mother
Age: 32
Nationality: Ten years in France, yet still English through and through.

I like: Living in Paris, playing with my daughter Lila (four-years-old), the company of good friends, the smell of baking bread . . .

So reads Sally's ad, posted on a French online dating site called Rendez-Vous. Sally left Nicolas, her French boyfriend of ten years and Lila's father, after she discovered that he was having an affair with his secretary. Six months have now passed, and although most of the time she feels like she's just dashing around like a headless chicken, she's beginning to bounce back.

But making a new start is fraught with complications. As she meets freshly-single Frédéric for a drink, spends the night with charmer Manu and runs away from ex-pat Marcus, she wonders: can she find a way to reconcile motherhood with single womanhood? To what extent can she keep Lila and her love life separate? And is she truly ready to turn her back on Nicolas?

I really like British Chick Lit. So much so that I don't know why I don't read more of it. Although this novel is set in Paris, it is British through and through and it was wonderful. French Kissing by Cathering Sanderson is Sanderson's first novel and it's a good one.

Sally, the protagonist is upbeat, fun and very likeable. She's fiercely independent and is trying to adjust to life as a recently single mom; having to deal with the fact that she cannot go out with her friends when she wants to (which leads her to sometimes feel like she is being left out) dealing with the fact that she has to sometimes leave a party early because the sitter needs to get home. Life is not as easy as it once was for Sally. So she give the Internet dating a try.

There was nothing overly special about this book, it wasn't overly funny, the story was interesting but it wasn't a novel idea. But the writing was good, and the characters were great. It was an easy and quick read. I almost wish I would have saved this for summer because it would have been great to read in the morning on my front step. I also loved that the story took place in Paris and that Sally was an English born woman living in France. I desperately want to live in France some day and this book fueled my desire and helped me realize that it is possible.
Catherine Sanderson herself has lived in Paris for many many years and is originally from somewhere in the UK, but has made Paris her home.

The one thing that I did find a little annoying with this book was the amount of french phrases and sentences that were thrown into the book with no translation. I can speak and read French fairly well, however there were sometimes when I wasn't to sure about what sometime meant and had to just be ok with that. I would imagine that for someone who spoke no french this would have been pretty frustrating.

Overall I think that if you are looking for something light and fun, this is the read for you.

Happy Reading Everyone!


  1. Oh1 Sounds good -Goes to add to wish list - thanks for the lovely review. I do love light and fun.

  2. I don't believe I've ever read any British chick lit before but It sure sounds fun. I love reading books that have a distinctly British voice.

  3. Hi Sara,
    I just found your blog through a comment you left on ames' blog. I'm glad I clicked over--you've got a great blog here! Your header is gorgeous, btw!

    This book sounds really sweet. I have read at least one British Chick Lit book that I can think of off the top of my head and have to say that I adored it, too! I'm going to look for this one... I think I'd really enjoy it. :)

    Happy Reading!


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