It’s that time again, and this month we are going to talk about Meet Cecile. This book is unique because it’s one of the few situations where one of the BeForever/Historical friends actually had a good bit of a story revolve around her instead of just the main character. Yes, Julie had Ivy, Samantha had Nelly and some of the other girls had friends, but I don’t think any of them were given quite the prominence as Cecile. I’m still sad that these girls are gone from the American Girl line too because they were both such great characters.
I was very excited to read this book as I absolutely loved Meet Marie-Grace. What I didn’t realize is Meet Cecile was not written by the same person!! I was surprised to learn that, but the story didn’t suffer because of it.
Meet Cecile has it’s similarities to Meet Marie-Grace in it’s setting and some of the places discussed such as the Marketplace, the place where both girls take their music lessons and some of the others, but overall, the book has a very different feel to it. I love the use of many French words, I took several years of French in school and it was fun to see how much of it I remembered.
The family dynamic is totally different for Cecile too, she comes from a busy household with several servants and a brother who is away in Paris. The two stories come together though with the tale of the adventure the girls have at the Children’s Ball, but told from a different perspective. There doesn’t seem to be quite as much about the developing friendship between the two girls though, much more of Meet Cecile is devoted to her family preparing for her brother to come home from Paris. There is also an antagonistic character, but much like the one in Meet Marie-Grace, it’s very fleeting, not like some of the ones in other books.
Meet Cecile also goes into a lot of detail about the Free People Of Color with a very interesting part of the story devoted to it, as well as a whole section in the back of the book that explains more about it. I think this is something very relevant to what is going on in our world today, and I’m very glad that someone thought it needed discussing when they worked on the concept for these books.
Overall, I liked Meet Cecile, not quite as much as Meet Marie-Grace though. I do have the rest of the series and will be reading it eventually. If anyone would be interested in continuing with these books for book group later on, please let me know in the comments!
What did you think of Meet Cecile?
The book for February will be Grace, March will be Meet Felicity. I hope everyone can get their hands on these before then and participate in the discussion!