Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Kiss Me First; Lottie Moggach

Title:  Kiss Me First 
Author: Lottie Moggach 
Publication Year:  2013 
Publisher: Random House
Edition: arc and audio 
Reader: Imogen Church (very good)
Source: my shelves/library
Date Completed: Sept - 2013
Rating: 4.5/5

Kiss Me First, is a terrific debut novel that held my interest from the very first page. It takes place outside of London.

20-something Leila, is a sad sack, an underdog who has led a sheltered life. She lacks self-awareness, and because her mother suffered from MS throughout Leila's childhood and young adulthood, she has missed out on a lot. When her mother dies, Leila who is well familiar with the web and spending all of her free time with the World of Warcraft, finds a new website to occupy her time. The website is called Red Pill,  a chat room for members to for debate ethical issues such as assisted suicide and euthanasia.  After Leila engages in discussions on the philosophical forum -- she's  pro-euthanasia, since dealing with her mother's debilitating illness and death, she impresses the web site's founder, Adrian Dervish. He asks her to meet him to discuss something.

Adrian proposes that Leila help a woman named Tess who has lost her will to live. Tess is approaching 40, severely bipolar and wants to quietly slip out of her life by committing suicide, but without hurting her family and friends in the process. Leila's job will be to learn as much as possible about Tess, her background, family, friends, childhood, drug use, sexual encounters and more, all in just a few weeks so she can pretend to be her.  Tess will then slip out of the here and now and Leila will assume her identity online. Tess believes it would be easier to let her family believe that she has simply cut all ties, than to have to deal with her suicide. 

Kiss Me First is a story about lonely, messed-up people. Leila is an unreliable narrator who is smart, and a bit cunning, and not a particularly likable character (no likable characters in this book), yet the story held my interest throughout. The story is told by Leila after she had agreed to take over Tess's identity, and I loved the fact that the (2) women couldn't be more different. Both messed up, but different.

A psychological thriller of sorts, Kiss Me First is a story is one that really makes you think. A real eye-opener given all the information that is so freely shared in today's social media arena and all of the virtual relationships that have been created online --scary.  Just another reason I'm not a FB fan.

READ this book! I really enjoyed it.

Thanks Jackie/Farm Lane Books for bringing this one to my attention


  1. I like it when there are unlikable characters, but the book is enjoyable. I will keep an eye out for this one.

    1. I agree and she is a good one. I know you would enjoy this one.

  2. This sounds really good and I'm intrigued by the cover!

  3. This sounds like a great plot. I can think of so many ways it could go. I published a review of the novel The Gods of Heavenly Punishment and an author interview. Hope you'll take a look. I think you'd like the book.

  4. Sometimes, despite the unlikable characters, we do stay glued to a story (like a train wreck?). This one sounds interesting. Thanks for sharing.

  5. How interesting. It makes me wonder who I'm really interacting with online!

  6. That is a great recommendation and sounds so interesting.

  7. Ooo, this sounds really interesting! I actually kind of like unreliable narrators; they keep you on their toes.

  8. Diane, this does sound sinister and intriguing. Thanks for another terrific and concise review.

  9. Yay! I'm so pleased that you enjoyed it! It is good to know it works on audio - I'll recommend it in that format too now :-)

  10. I've been reading a lot of books with unreliable narrators and unlikable characters lately. This sounds very interesting!

  11. Thanks for your great review. This does sound like an interesting story.

  12. Not a Facebook fan? Good for you. I rely on it too much to keep track of friends and family.


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