We caught up with NYT bestselling author Sarah Mlynowski before the launch of her newest book, I SEE LONDON, I SEE FRANCE to talk travel, girlfriends and of course, her new book, which is like Anna and the French Kiss meets 13 Little Blue Envelopes! In the book, Sydney has the perfect post-grad European trip mapped out with Eiffel Tower selfies, gelato binges and meeting tres hot guys. Her plans did not include meeting up with her BFF’s ex, or falling for his best friend…..

     

What did you love most about writing this book?

Writing I See London, I See France was like traveling through Europe, except I avoided jet lag and never had to get out of my pajamas. Also, my research included two trips to Europe (!), plus taste-testing multiple macarons, many waffles and way too many flavors of gelato. You gotta do what you gotta do.

Haha! Sounds like you made some serious sacrifices for art. So what inspired this book? 

I backpacked through Europe when I was 19. I traveled with three of my girlfriends, but met up with my then-boyfriend-now-husband along the way. I’ll never admit exactly what’s true and what isn’t, but it’s possible I too ended up in the Riviera in my undies.

What are friends for, if not adventures? Sydney and Leela are so excited for their trip and are childhood besties. What do you love most about girlfriend/BFF relationships?  

Childhood best friends are a bit like sisters, and like relationships between sisters, relationships between best friends can be incredibly complicated. Amidst the closeness, there is selfishness, jealously and love, and sometimes it can be tricky to navigate. I’m drawn to these relationships because of how layered they are. When you’re super close to someone, you know how to hurt them, but you probably know what’s best for them, too.

What do you hope readers take away after reading this?

That sometimes it’s okay to put your own needs first, even if others are used to relying on you. Also that you need tickets to get to the top of the Eiffel Tower.

Good to know! So….your favorite European city is_____because__________. 

Paris because of macarons.

Bruges because of waffles.

Rome because of gelato.

I might need a snack.

We know we do! If you could take any YA author(s) with you on a European vacation, who would it be and why?

Robin Wasserman. Because I did take her with me on a European vacation when I was researching this book! Look! I have pictures!