Serena Fuentes won't waste one moment of her whirlwind trip to Paris. She has it all mapped out, right down to the photos she will take, and the last thing she wants is a change in plans. Yet suddenly she's touring the city with Jean-Luc, a French friend of her sister's boyfriend. He has to take pictures of his own if he ever hopes to pass his photography class, and his project totally slows Serena down. Why can't he get with her program? One minute they're bickering, the next minute they're bonding ... and soon they're exploring corners of Paris together that Serena never imagined. When it comes to love, sometimes it takes a different lens to see what's right in front of us. A romantic adventure for anyone who sees the possibilities in a spontaneous tour of the City of Lights with a charming French stranger, and anyone who's ever wondered if true love is waiting on the other side of the ocean. Catherine Rider's delightful follow-up to Kiss Me in New York will sweep you off your feet.
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What worked: Well, in one word: Paris. Rider is able to show us Paris through not only Serena's eyes, but through Jean-Luc's camera. Serena is very organized and loves her lists. She really wants to go to all the places her parents visited some 25 years previously, but nothing goes as planned. Jean-Luc 'tries' to show her the 'real' Paris by his take on the so-called tourist places. Little by little both of their guards come down. Secrets, loss, and betrayals are shared behind the backdrop of the City of Lights.
Serena's obsession to make a memorial scrapbook for her mother is sweet, but her determination to hit every Parisian tourist spot had her miss at times the real magic of the city. I liked how Jean-Luc shows readers some hidden parts of the city that he captures behind the lens of his camera. Also I like how both characters are able to share some of their pasts with each other. Each have something similar happen to them. Serena's pain of losing her father continues to hang over her while Jean-Luc's grandfather's slow decline in heath affects him too.
I love the stops on Serena's Romantic tour, only I wanted to see more! I felt they went by a tad bit too fast so they blended together. I did love the encounter Serena has with a boy from her school that is similar to her, only he wants her to agree to a life long plan together right on the spot!
There's some funny parts like when Serena and Jean-Luc get on the wrong boat and end up crashing an office Christmas party. Each mishap though seems to pull the two closer together.
Romantic Parisian setting where a teen finds that it's okay to make your own romantic tour and to take a risk on love.