I See London, I See France by Sarah Mylnowski
Best friends Sydney and Leela have talked about backpacking around Europe together since they were little girls. They’ve dreamed of eating stinky cheese and macaroons in Paris, having tea in London, and seeing the famous statue of David in Italy.
And finally Sydney and Leela are making their dreams a reality. They are actually boarding a plane and escaping Maryland, a needy family, and a cheating ex-boyfriend. Everything is going to be perfect.
That is until Sydney spots Leela’s cheating ex boyfriend just a few rows from them … in the same plane…heading towards London.
From that moment on both girls expectations of this trip plummet. Now Leela is expecting her ex Matt to realize the error of his ways, and to drop her and Sydney’s plans so that they can travel with Matt.
While this isn’t part of the plan, and while she doesn’t necessarily mind traveling with Matt and his super hot friend Jackson, but she does mind the feeling that this isn’t going to be the trip of her dreams.
Will Sydney have the time of her life? Or will it be a trip she rather forget?
I See London, I See France, written by author Sarah Mylnowski, is a contemporary romp through Europe.
Mylnowski’s writing is solid and engaging. What it excels at is the fact her writing is full of vivid descriptions. As I read I easily was lost in thought, filling feeling as if I was experience the sights and sounds that Sydney and Leela experiences in each new country. When they visited London I was instantly transported to my favorite city. When they were in Amsterdam, I became excited for my own upcoming adventure. Besides the vivid descriptions, I truly appreciated Mlynoski’s knack for writing authentic dialog.
Going into I See London, I See France I was excited. This book, I knew, was going to be my perfect book. And it would have been perfect but I found that one key aspect fell short for me: the characters.
Sydney and Leela, at least for me, were not likable in the least. I found Sydney to be weak when she had the potential to be strong. And Leela …. I could go on and on listing the reasons why I didn’t like her as a character. In short I found her to be, not only selfish, but incessantly whiney.
I wanted to love both of these character. I wanted them to be the kind of characters that I could see myself within, and cheer on. Instead I often found myself shaking my head with annoyance and wanting to shake some sense into them.
A lot of their flaws I could have ignored, but what I couldn’t ignore was the fact that I felt that I didn’t see any growth. Both Sydney and Leela had opportunities to grow and develop into complex characters. I feel those opportunities went overlooked.
When I started I See London, I See France I thought this was going to be a story about friendship. But as pages turned into chapters I couldn’t help but feel that this was more a story about a friendship on the verge of dissolving. Honestly, that saddened me.
I See London, I See France was not my cup of tea. However, I’m glad I read it. I’m glad I had the chance to experience this book even if it did fall short for me.
Even though this book wasn’t my cup of tea, I urge you to read it and experience it yourself. I’d love for you to share your thoughts.