Liszts Kiss: A Novel

Liszt’s Kiss
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It is correct that people continued to attend parties and charity concerts, but Parisians also left their city and country in droves — apparently, , passports were issued at the town hall. She goes for walks and drives during which we neither hear of nor see the epidemic. It is explained that the poor suspect they are being poisoned, for it is mainly the lower classes who are affected, and the characters discuss newspaper articles which describe mob violence against scapegoats.

But the biggest problem, to me, is the way the novel takes one of the most famous Romantics and one of the most infamous affairs of the period and reduces them to a vehicle for giving a teenager cause for puppy love angst. There is nothing wrong with choosing a narrow scope for a story — for example, the romance genre specialises in tight focus on the developing emotional relationship of a couple. But in order to give such a story substance, it is, I think, generally a good idea to delve into the chosen themes with all the more intensity and depth.

The exploration of it, however, is as superficial, cool, and vague as a reflection in a foxed mirror. Likewise, we learn nothing about what the Romantics stood for, what they wanted to convey with their art, why the movement flourished at this time — even though Dunlap blends several famous names into her story: These are artists and intellectuals who revolutionised the concept of art and created, debated, loved, and fought their way into the Western cultural canon.


What does Dunlap have to say about them? Oh, and how a pianist places her hands on the keys. Carriage terminology broughams, chariots is off, as is attire Anne wears hoop skirts , proper address, French etiquette including mourning etiquette, and the age at which French parents were legally able to interfere with any marriage contracted by their children. Things that raised my eyebrows include this statement: She is the daughter of a marquis, has been raised for seventeen years by a courtier father and a mother who hostesses brilliant parties and dinners, yet neither parent has instructed her in basics that every child of the nobility would have been expected to know in order not to disgrace their family?

Am I to understand that, prior to the misfortunes that hit her family, she never once was introduced to a single adult acquaintance and that she failed to absorb common customs and courtesies? In fact, Anne was in almost every respect a problematic character for me. With the exception of a promising start, whenever the story was told from her point of view my credulity and patience dropped several notches.

Seventeen years old, she admittedly has an excuse for behaving like a hormonal teenager, but her shallowness and lack of empathy or concern for others prevented me from seeing her as the wounded character the author intended according to the interview at the back of the book. Moreover, Anne was not the only protagonist who lost my sympathy.

Their various hair-raising thoughts , and self-serving actions left me with increased feelings of distaste and disgust for this bunch of dizzyingly callous, silly, and thin characters.

Liszt's Kiss : Susanne Dunlap :

Purely for the energy, warmth, and enthusiasm he brings to the often anemic tone of the story, Franz Liszt Liszt Ferenc z was one of the saving graces of the novel for me. It gave me goose-flesh.

I almost forgave the ludicrous plot contrivances to make Anne believe he is in love with her, which make him seem absurdly dense and irrational. In inventing her own version of the beginnings of their mutual attraction she does exactly that, however. Tired of Anne, I rather welcomed it. Her intelligence, involvement in social issues, and political acumen find no place in the novel since her sole preoccupation is with her forbidden attraction for Liszt at twenty-eight, she is married with two children.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

I suspect Pierre Talon is meant to embody the Romantic soul. I thought him a sympathetic character but distressingly naive.

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He falls head over heels in love with Anne at first glance and it seems there is nothing he would not do for her, including burglary and theft, simply because a stranger tells him this is necessary in order to safeguard Anne who, of course, must not know about it. Since until the end of the novel the pair do not conduct a single private conversation about anything personal I am relieved to report that I liked the way the author resolved the question of how to give their non-relationship a romantic yet believable ending.

In that case, I apologise. I cannot say the same for the preposterous machinations of other characters to force a different outcome. The romantic content displays a similar hue.

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Pierre is present and realises she has fainted. The reaction of this medical student is as follows: The last time I encountered anything similar in a genre romance was a s Barbara Cartland book I read in my teens. To me it added nothing and merely read as lazy writing. In terms of general readability, I thought the novel improved considerably around the page mark. The plot gains momentum as it progresses, and in the second half is often involving. The Secret Crusade Oliver Bowden.

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Start by marking “Liszt's Kiss” as Want to Read: Susanne Dunlap is the author of six works of historical fiction. Two are for adults (Emilie's Voice and Liszt's Kiss, both published by Touchstone books of Simon & Schuster). Liszt's Kiss: A Novel [Susanne Dunlap] on *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. The romantic story of a young female pianist in cholera-ravaged .

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