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The Kissing List

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Description

An inventive debut that recalls the imagination of Aimee Bender and the sardonic wit of Lorrie Moore.

The interlocking stories in The Kissing List feature an unforgettable group of young women – Sylvie, Anna, Frances, Maureen – as their lives connect, first during a year abroad at Oxford, then later as they move to New York on the cusp of adulthood. We follow each of them as they navigate the treachery of first dates, temp jobs and roommates, failed relationships and unexpected affairs – all the things that make their lives seem full of possibility, but also rife with potential disappointment.

Shot through with laugh-out-loud lines, yet still wrenchingly emotional and resonant, The Kissing List is a book about women who bravely defy expectations and take outrageous chances in the face of a life that might turn out to be anything less than extraordinary.

From the Hardcover edition.

From Publishers Weekly

Feb 27, 2012 – Reents’s collection is formally adept—one story in which a woman trades sex for designer clothes moves seamlessly into another that begins with an ill-fitting and outdated suit worn to a temp job. Despite the pleasing transitions, however, the entire volume is infused with a melancholic wistfulness that can come off as self-indulgent, and the weakest stories tend to be shallow and predictable. The stories form a patchwork of the lives of friends and acquaintances in New York, told from different perspectives, which flesh out significant events—such as Laurie’s cancer, or the ever-changing landscape of Sylvia’s love life. Reents uses the myriad viewpoints and freedom of the short format to play with different styles and forms, but the whole is cohesive. “Roommates,” for example, is a traditional, realist narrative, but Reents experiments with surrealism (“Disquisition on Tears”) and a detached, third-person narrative that reinforces the notion of a diaspora of the self (“Love for Women”). If not exactly trailblazing, Reents has created a collection that is emotionally vivid and stylistically interesting.
The Kissing List
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  • $9.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Fiction & Literature
  • Published: May 22, 2012
  • Publisher: Crown/Archetype
  • Seller: Penguin Random House LLC
  • Print Length: 240 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

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