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A Kiss Before You Leave Me (English Edition) van [Hulbert, James]
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A Kiss Before You Leave Me (English Edition) Kindle-editie

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Kindle, 9 sep 2010
"Probeer het later opnieuw"
EUR 2,20

Lengte: 244 pagina's Verbeterd lettertype: Ingeschakeld Bladeren: Ingeschakeld
Taal: Engels

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Three master manipulators--and a woman in love--clash in the worlds of surveillance, voyeurism, and art.

Miranda Kincaid used liquor and other men to flee the control of her husband Vince and his mother Kathleen. Now divorced, sober, and man-free, she's putting her life back together. Vince, now her friend, wants her back--and his mother will stop at nothing to keep them apart. Kathleen's secret weapon? A new man: a seductive, married misfit, a once and future painter with demons of his own--and his own plans for Miranda.

Equal parts moral tale and "guilty pleasure," "A Kiss Before You Leave Me" is plotted like a thriller, but its most memorable violence is emotional--and all the more disturbing because it's done in the name of love.

Ten rave reviews from readers at; average rating 4.9 stars (out of 5). An bestseller for psychological fiction. A 2013 nominee (literary fiction) for BigAl's Books and Pals Readers' Choice Award.

"Cast a spell over me from the opening words... Strange and unexpected...
Develops as the kind of affair you might have had (if you were lucky or cursed, depending on how you look at it) that makes you think deeper, drawing emotions not only from your heart and mind, but your very soul. Surface things are not always as they appear, motives, intentions, people. Seductive, powerful... excellent overall." --Red Haircrow,


  • Editie: Kindle-editie
  • Bestandsgrootte: 571 KB
  • Printlengte: 244 pagina's
  • Verkocht door: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Taal: Engels
  • ASIN: B0042JT19G
  • Tekst-naar-spraak: Ingeschakeld
  • X-Ray:
  • Schermlezer: Ondersteund
  • Verbeterd lettertype: Ingeschakeld
  • Gemiddelde klantenbeoordeling: Schrijf als eerste een recensie over dit item
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Meest waardevolle klantenrecensies op (bèta) (er kunnen recensies van Early Reviewer Rewards-programma bij zitten) 4.6 van 5 sterren 17 recensies
2 van 2 mensen vonden de volgende recensie nuttig
5.0 van 5 sterren Top Quality Writing 24 april 2011
door Wi Su Lin - Gepubliceerd op
Geverifieerde aankoop
The writing in this novel is excellent, and the author depicts the characters well. Here is one of the main characters, the stockbroker Vince Kincaid:

"Taped just inside the top drawer of his desk, she knew, were Homer's lines about Odysseus that served Vince as an immodest visualization of himself: `He is so shrewd, when it comes to amassing riches, no man on earth is his rival.'"

The minor characters are also done well, such as Charlie, the savvy Manhattan art gallery manager, with `flawless skin,' `New York in a bottle,' advising an artist on which nine pieces to include in a show:

"Charlie's gracious, measured `every bit as good' that day meant among other things: Let's not even get into what looks or feels better to you. You want to be right? OK, you're right. Who knows better than the artist himself? I won't say those over there in your pile are `better' than the nine in mine, but I'll give you an `every bit as good.' That way we don't have to talk about it. What we care about are the right nine for one particular moment in time. It's my job to know which nine."

The gem in the novel is Miranda, a translator who has gone through hard times and is trying to get back on her feet with a translation of a young woman's diary written in Paris. Much of the plot in the novel unfolds through Miranda's eyes. In the opening pages, when she goes for a business lunch interview for doing the diary translation, the author deftly slips this in:

"... (he) eased a worn volume from his briefcase, but just as he opened its pages Miranda was suddenly there, as if by magic. He forgot the diary and rose to take her hand. She was beautiful."

Particularly fine in the novel are the half-page passage on Miranda looking at herself this way and that in the mirror getting ready for a big date; her heart to heart conversations with Casey, her gay landlord; and her wry perceptions of the men in her life. She has no agenda, as in the interview for the translation:

"Miranda, in truth, had spent more time steaming her grey Chanel suit than applying make-up. The only impression she wanted to make was of someone who'd show up on time and keep her promises."

The novel has many fine descriptions, some of them daringly erotic, and the conversations and repartee are spot-on. Don't miss the line about a couple of kids from Georgia. Enjoy, enjoy ...
1 van 1 mensen vonden de volgende recensie nuttig
4.0 van 5 sterren Art, obsession and betrayal 1 oktober 2011
door B. Beard - Gepubliceerd op
Geverifieerde aankoop
The question of identity is one that cannot be answered in isolation. As a social creature, the way we define ourselves is often heavily influenced by the way we view others and the reverse. This tangled web of relationships and identity forms the heart of James Hulbert's literary character study, A Kiss Before You Leave Me.

The novel follows the flow of interactions between translator Miranda Kinkaid, her ex-husband stock-broker Vince, and her new beau, a lawyer. Miranda is a recovering alcoholic still emotionally and even financially reliant on her dependable ex-husband. When a new man is brought into her life by circumstance, she is soon drawn toward a deep emotional intimacy that she's been lacking, all the while inspiring the artistic fire in her new boyfriend. Emotional betrayal, artistic obsession and the wounds of the past all combine together into a plot that may be more subtle in its tension yet still engaging.

Characterization is the true strength of this novel. Although Miranda gets the most focus, every character introduced is actualized with a depth that lends more weight to their interactions. Many of these characters may not necessarily be likable depending on the reader's tastes, but they are all very intriguing nonetheless. Psychological states and changes play a key role in the progression of events, and they are all handled in a manner that is both dramatic and interesting yet avoids any hint of implausibility. The character work is generally strengthened by the use of multiple points-of-view throughout the novel, though there were a few occasions where it felt like certain information was held back that should have been accessible given some of the POVs being followed. I will note that I did find the occasional and uneven use of a frame narrator not only unnecessary but also somewhat distracting. The issue didn't arise enough to seriously impact my enjoyment of the story.

On occasion, there was a slight tendency toward summary that did find less interesting, mostly in the middle acts of the story. Those segments aside, the plot itself is generally paced well and moves along with enough emotional climaxes to have kept my interest. For a mostly psychological character study, there were a surprising number of interesting twists all the way through the end.

Bourgeois ennui as a thematic thread runs throughout the novel. Even though the ennui, in itself, didn't resonate with me, the expert characterization and the more general exploration of relationships and social expectation were more than satisfying. In particular, I found the examination of how various positive social connections can so easily be turned into damaging ones one of the most interesting aspects of this story.

Overall, I found A Kiss Before You Leave Me an intriguing exploration of the hearts and minds of several realistically depicted emotionally-damaged characters.

Rating: 4 stars

My indie, my tea and me
J.A. Beard
5 van 5 mensen vonden de volgende recensie nuttig
5.0 van 5 sterren In a class to itself 30 juni 2011
door Mapuche2 - Gepubliceerd op
Geverifieerde aankoop
One's first impression is that, in its detail, "A Kiss...." is consummately crafted as a Faberge egg. There's not a word out of place, and many passages could comfortably stand by themselves as prose poems. At the same time, from the beginning--which refers to a "key" moment which comes much later--one realizes that "A Kiss...." is architectural in the sense that each detail is a carefully positioned part of a mystery, for like a Faberge egg the novel is made to beautifully display the fact that it contains a secret. One reads on with the pleasure of anticipating its revelation.

"A Kiss...." is in a class all to itself, and I read it twice, fascinated. This is not a novel for lazy readers (or for prudes), but I heartily recommend it to all who love tight prose and a great mystery.
1 van 1 mensen vonden de volgende recensie nuttig
5.0 van 5 sterren A Kiss Before You Leave Me 30 mei 2012
door BigAl - Gepubliceerd op
Geverifieerde aankoop
A Kiss Before You Leave Me is literary fiction (one of those "you know it when you see it" things) with the plot of a suspense novel. The characters are different from the norm enough that guessing their secrets and how it will all work out is virtually impossible. How I felt about different characters kept changing as the story progressed with some significant surprises down the finishing stretch.

One item I noted was what seemed like a change in the point of view from one book (major sections of the novel) to the next. In reality it wasn't a change in the point of view - it is all in third person - however, it changes from past tense to the narrator describing a series of paintings in present tense which allude, albeit ambiguously, to what happened. I don't see anything wrong with this practice and these sections were well executed, but it may be off-putting to some readers.

**Originally written for "Books and Pals" book blog. May have received a free review copy. **
2 van 2 mensen vonden de volgende recensie nuttig
4.0 van 5 sterren Does it always End with Kisses? 3 november 2010
door Jack Newpeasant - Gepubliceerd op
Geverifieerde aankoop
An apparently ordinary story full of unexpected twists and turns, about people who keep surprising the reader, and perhaps even the narrator, who starts out by "eavesdropping" on a party, is at times prescient, but at times also taken aback by the turn of events. More exactly, this is not just about people but also about diaries and paintings that seem to reveal something about their creators but also go beyond the original impulse of their making, acquire a significance of their own, and intervene into subsequent life in surprising ways.
The narrative sucks you in, gradually involves the reader in a psychodrama. At the end, one is sorry, not just for the figures, for their bad fortunes, but also for having come to the end of the book. However, the painful freedom into which the heroine is finally released encourages readers to keep spinning follow-up stories.
A wonderful and exciting reading!