Wednesday, June 29, 2016

"One Paris Summer" by Denise Grover Swank

About this book:

  “Most teens dream of visiting the City of Lights, but it feels more like a nightmare for Sophie Brooks. She and her brother are sent to Paris to spend the summer with their father, who left home a year ago without any explanation. As if his sudden abandonment weren't betrayal enough, he's about to remarry, and they’re expected to play nice with his soon-to-be wife and stepdaughter. The stepdaughter, Camille, agrees to show them around the city, but she makes it clear that she will do everything in her power to make Sophie miserable.
  Sophie could deal with all the pain and humiliation if only she could practice piano. Her dream is to become a pianist, and she was supposed to spend the summer preparing for a scholarship competition. Even though her father moved to Paris to pursue his own dream, he clearly doesn't support hers. His promise to provide her with a piano goes unfulfilled.
  Still, no one is immune to Paris’s charm. After a few encounters with a gorgeous French boy, Sophie finds herself warming to the city, particularly when she discovers that he can help her practice piano. There’s just one hitch—he’s a friend of Camille’s, and Camille hates Sophie. While the summer Sophie dreaded promises to become best summer of her life, one person could ruin it all.”

Series: No. 

Spiritual Content- A mention of Catholics; A mention of Christian being buried in the catacombs; A couple mentions of statues of biblical kings & Virgin Mary; A couple mentions of an old Sunday School lesson mentioning hell having fire & brimstone; Mentions of churches (a wedding and rebuilding a church, not actually going to church for church);
*Note: “Thank God” is said four times (more likely slang than seriously thanking God); “Good heavens” is said (again, slang); “God bless him” and “Bless your heart” (more of southern sayings/sass than truly meaning it); A mention of “heaven knows where”; A mention of the Lord knowing about a match made in heaven (sarcasm, slang); A mention of (slang) “God forbid”; A mention of demons; A mention of making a deal with the devil; A mention of someone making someone else’s “life hell”; A couple mentions of the “summer of hell” and saying “I was living in hell.”; A couple mentions of superstitions; A couple mentions of the Gates of Hell statue; A couple mentions of statues of naked gods & goddess; Mentions of giving someone a blessing to do something.

Negative Content- Minor cussing including: a ‘butthead’, a form of ‘darn’, a ‘for cripes’ sake’, an ‘Oh my God!’, a ‘shoot’, a ‘what the heck’, a ‘what the hell’, a ‘yuck it up’, two ‘duh’s, two ‘shut up’s, two ‘suck it up’s, four ‘freaking’s, four ‘jeez’s, four forms of ‘suck’, six forms of ‘idiot’, six ‘witch’s, nine forms of ‘screw up’, sixteen forms of ‘crap’, nineteen ‘stupid’s; twenty forms of ‘pissed off’; Mentions of “impressive” curses (said, not written); Lots of Sarcasm & Eye rolling; Sophie talks back & can be very out of line with her father; Sibling bicker; A mean girl & hating; All about divorces, a father leaving & verbal fights; Teen drinking (Sophie is with teens who drink & get drunk, she only takes a sip of the wine); Mentions of wine & champagne; Mentions of teens (17 and up) going to clubs; Mentions of bones & catacombs (semi-detailed); Mentions of lies & lying; Mentions of blackmail; Mentions of a car accident & injuries (barely-above-not-detailed); A few mentions of pickpockets; A few mentions of murder; A few mentions of punching; A few mentions of barfing; A couple mentions of parties; A couple mentions of gossip; A couple mentions of peeing; A mention of farts; A mention of smoking; A mention of gangs;
             *Note: A couple mentions of secular movie, The Breakfast Club.

Sexual Content- two hand/knuckles kisses, a forehead kiss, three not-detailed kisses, nine barely-above-not-detailed kisses, ten semi-detailed kisses, and four borderline semi-detailed // detailed kisses; Touches, Hand holding, Embraces & Warmth (up to semi-detailed); Noticing (up to semi-detailed); Butterflies; Dane manhandles Sophie three times & leaves marks on her wrists (he also kisses her); a ‘harpy’, a form of ‘hot’, a ‘prick’ and a ‘sleazy’; All about boyfriends, girlfriends, dating, crushes & cute guys; Many mentions of cheating, catching them in bed together naked (no doubt what they were doing, no details), sleeping around & doing it in a truck; Many mentions of blushes, flirting & jealousy; Mentions of kisses & making out; Mentions of kissing, nuzzling & nibbling (barely-above-not-detailed); Mentions of nearness; Mentions that Sophie’s mom was pregnant with her brother when their parents got married; Mentions of hooking up; Mentions of sneaking around & dating couples being alone together; Mentions of a guy & girl being alone in his apartment (nothing sexual happens, but other people think they do); Mentions of a guy screwing girls & only wanting one thing; Mention of Eric’s threats for guys to keep their hands on his sister; A few mentions of a jerk not being able to keep his eyes on Sophie; A few mentions of the secular movie Taken, a human trafficking ring & being sold into a harem; A couple mentions of the French not being strict with s*x, only that they have s*x when in love with someone; A couple mentions of molesting; A couple mentions of a Homecoming dance & dates; A (joking) mention of a guy being gay & “batting for the other team”; A mention of cougars; A mention of reputations; A mention of a man looking at his fiancé like he can’t wait for the wedding night; Love, falling in love, & the emotions; 
             *Note: Sophie reads a PG-13 YA romance (Dane calls it porn to embarrass her); A mention of Americans with their nudity; A couple mentions of a French pastry called a Paris-Brest, which is “round and shaped like a…”; A couple mentions of changing in front of other women; A couple mentions of being naked; A couple mentions of statues of naked women; A couple mentions of a jerk making snide comments about a the physical features of a statue of a naked goddess (not written); A few mentions of a statue of a naked couple in a passionate embrace & teens recreating the pose; A few mentions of a shirtless guy & guys taking off their shirts (barely-above-not-detailed); A mention of a bra; A mention of tampons; A mention of midriff showing tops; A few mentions of a bikini & it covering the girl’s butt; A mention of a butt leaning against a building; A mention of falling on a butt; A mention of something biting someone in the butt; A mention of a guy getting handed his butt on a platter in a competition.

-Sophie Brooks, age 16
                                         1st person P.O.V. of Sophie
                                                        348 pages

Pre Teens-
New Teens-
Early High School Teens-
Older High School Teens-
My personal Rating-
Okay, I'm familiar with Blink published books. Very rarely do they have any Christian content in them. I honestly wasn't expecting any Christian content, so when I finished it and there wasn't truly any, I wasn't shocked at all. For a Christian book, this was not okay-- The hints, kissing, cussing and teen drinking. For a secular book, it was decent, I guess. But this is not a secular book review blog, now is it?
One of my favorite shows is set in Paris, and that’s truly the only reason I was going to try this book out. Was that a good idea? Not really no. This looked like a cute cheesy chick-lit, but I was highly disappointed in all the major minor cussing (which is just plain soap worthy in the house I grew up in) and sexual hints. The author seemed to thrive on awkward situations and did many of them. I understand there is teen drinking in France, but that doesn't strike me as something that should be promoted as okay in a “Christian” book. Like most books now a days, there's the playboy who can't keep his hands to himself and tries to go after the main girl. Honestly, that's so cliché now and the ending just seemed like an easy way to drama and shallow. There's the mean stepsister who hates the main girl. (Don’t forget the backstory on why she’s so mean. Hello, typical?) Being all about Sophie’s parents’ divorce and her father leaving, it's hinted about each of them, later after separating, being alone on trips or living together with their boyfriend or girlfriend/fiancé which, again, didn't seem like a very Biblical view. Of course, Eric was conceived out of wedlock, but see, that could have been a redemption moment for the adults, and there were parts where Sophie could have prayed to God (she keep wanting to talk to someone...!), for the adding Spiritual Content to this book published under a Christian publisher, but there wasn't.
The only parts that got me through this book (okay, I had to finish this book due to reviewing reasons, but the only parts that helped me get through all the cussing and such) were the piano parts. I'll admit the author did a good job showing Sophie's emotions through her music. I did enjoy looking up and listening to the songs mentioned. Very pretty stuff.
So overall? This is a long review. And that’s not usually a good thing.

{Note: Rude comments with be deleted.}

See y’all on Friday with a new review!

*BFCG may (Read the review to see) recommend this book by this author. It does not mean I recommend all the books by this author.
*I received this book for free from the Publisher (Blink) for this honest review.


  1. I've read one of this author's books too. It was a little sketchy. Well written but I don't like books with cursing in them.

    1. Uh oh! I totally agree! No cursing please! ;)