. Athena's Books: Falling in Love With English Boys...on Valentine's Day
Monday, February 14, 2011

Falling in Love With English Boys...on Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day!  If there's one thing I love to read...anything with a smidgen of romance!  No doubt Falling in Love With English Boys fits the criteria.

Hmmm...what could this book possibly be about?  London, falling in love, romance...yes, that's exactly it!  The title and picture basically say it all, so this is the perfect book for Valentine's Day! 

Summary (from book)

Sixteen-year-old Catherine Vernon has been stranded in London for the summer - no friends, no ex-boyfriend Adam the Scum (good riddance!), and absolutely nothing to do but blog about her misery to her friends back home. Desperate for something - anything - to do in London while her (s)mother's off researching boring historical things, Cat starts reading the 1815 diary of Katherine Percival her mom gives her - and finds the similarities between their lives to be oddly close. But where Katherine has the whirls of the society, the parties and the gossip over who is engaged to who, Cat's only got some really excellent English chocolate. Then she meets William Percival - the uber-hot descendant of Katherine - and things start looking up.

Here's my Minnie/mini-review

The Good...personal blog vs. personal diary--the entire narrative is in this format, providing something quite different than other novels.  But the first person POV keeps it familiar to other YA's you've read.

The Better...Katherine's 19th century diary entry--there's just more depth to her entries or maybe I just perceive it that way because her entries give insight to an unfamiliar society so unlike ours.  I mean, the waltz is considered quite a scandalous dance in Kat's world.

The Not So Bad...there's just not a big enough sweep-me-off-my-feet factor.  Maybe because all entries are first person blog and diary entries.  It's difficult to bring out fantasticly romantic conversation because then it's no longer such a personal account...it starts turning into a regular novel narrative.  But Kat's diary does a better job of bringing the emotional punch, not to mention the scenes where Kat just wants to slap the man she doesn't yet know she loves.

The Not So Ugly...N/A!  Just look at the cover!  Absolutely gorgeous! The only criticism I have is that it doesn't match either Cat or Kat.  Cat from the 21st century is not a fashionista and Kat from the 19th century could never show an ounce of ankle--ever.

Of course Cat falls for the tall, dark, and handsome, blue-eyed Brit...not Simon Cowell at all.  He also happens to be devastatingly rich and wel-travelled.  Of course there's the modelesque girfriend, too.  And she is one of the central problems between them.  The other problems...all boil down to basic facts--He is British and rich and mature and she is American--typical high school girl who cares about shopping and cute boys and being like by others.

I guess I can say Kat is very similiar to Cat any many teenage girls out there...BUT...society demands Kat be this way.  The right match has to be made to secure her future.  She has to be the best dressed and has to end up with someone at least equal to her status.  Luckily, she has a mother to help her stand up for herself and not take the first man her father finds for her.

Of the two, I liked 19th century Kat better.  I only wished her story would have continued...that the big love scene would've been way bigger.  But this is Cat's story, so more of the focus has to go to Cat and her quest for love.