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Necklace of Kisses Hardcover – August 2, 2005


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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Starred Review. Readers who remember Weetzie Bat and My Secret Agent Lover Man's first kiss (a "kiss about apple pie à la mode with the vanilla creaminess melting in the pie heat") from their YA incarnation may be crushed to learn that they've shared no kisses since September 11, 2001. My Secret Agent Lover Man, though Weetzie's long-time lover, "was now just Max"; Weetzie, whom readers first met in 1989's Weetzie Bat, is now 40. As the novel opens, Weetzie packs a small bag and checks herself into a pink hotel in L.A., "seeking the kiss she had lost." There Weetzie embarks on a quest of sorts. She meets Shelley, whose kiss reveals that she is a mermaid and is the first of the title's necklace of kisses. Each kiss injects a bit more enchantment into Weetzie's life. Block carefully construes the kisses as complete in and of themselves. Weetzie never betrays Max; this is a novel of healing. Weetzie's many fans will most appreciate this reunion with the heroine and her Secret Agent Lover Man, Dirk and Duck and many more. But those just meeting Block's whimsical entourage and sparkling prose will also appreciate the book's message: that magic can be found in stolen moments and, in Dirk's words, though "love is a dangerous angel," it's well worth the risk. (Aug.)
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From Booklist

The gentle punk fairy-tale series about Weetzie Bat and her Los Angeles friends, lovers, and family broke new YA ground, and author Block has just received the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in YA literature. Now Weetzie Bat is 40 and facing a midlife crisis, and so is her boyfriend, Secret Agent Lover Man, who, since 9/11, just sits idly reading the newspaper. She leaves, hoping to find herself, but this time, rather than meditating in the wilderness, she remains in her beloved L.A., moving into the expensive and magical Pink Hotel, where she luxuriates in room service, gets her nails and toenails done, kisses a sushi-eating mermaid, chats to her father's ghost, and gets a necklace of gifts from a diva, an angel, a faun, and more. The self-parody is as wonderful as ever--Weetzie doesn't have to save the world; she can just go shopping--and, as always, the magic is in the detail: wearing her raspberry snakeskin sandals, dipping her roll in olive oil and basil, surreal stuff happens. Sometimes things get a little too "numinous" (Weetzie's favorite word), but the celebration of the silly and the magical in a scary, sad world will appeal to all those once-teen fans who remember Weetzie and, just like her, now need a rewrite. Hazel Rochman
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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"The Mermaid's Child" by Jo Baker
In this fantastical novel, the acclaimed author of "Longbourn" brings us the magical story of a young girl in search of her mother - who just might be a mermaid. See more

Product Details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Harper (August 2, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0060777516
  • ISBN-13: 978-0060777517
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,684,651 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Francesca Lia Block, recipient of the prestigious Margaret A. Edwards Lifetime Achievement Award. has been publishing novels, short stories, essays, memoirs and poetry since 1989. Her work has been translated into many languages. Ms. Block lives in Los Angeles where she teaches writing workshops that are also available online.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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See all 31 customer reviews
A quick and satisfying read, full of color and fantasy.
Amanda Jo Manol
A very personal journey into the heart and mind of heroine/fairy Weetzie Bat.
Robin E. Fletcher
I've read her books about 20 times, and when this came out I jumped on it!
Adrianna Tralongo

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Jessica Lux on August 11, 2005
Format: Hardcover
Fans of Weetzie and friends from the early 1990's will love seeing them all again facing modern issues. Secret Agent Lover Man has been depressed since seeing the twin towers burn, and there are no more kisses in the marriage, so Weetzie sets out to the pink hotel of her high school prom to find some magic. Her adventures are a delight to the senses, filled with exotic people, foods, tastes, jewels, and Weetzie's bright sense of fashion.

Everyone who loved the first magical world of Weetzie will not be disappointed. She has matured, and she deals with modern issues (including dishing about Botox), but her adventures are every bit as magical as before. I admire Block for creating a middle-aged heroine who is just as snazzy as she was in her 20's. Block also brings us back to the music Weetzie grew up on, which is a fun romp down memory lane.

Witch Baby really comes into her own in this novel, and in a reading by author Block to promote this book, she hinted that she was feeling there was more to the Witch Baby story, and another book might be forthcoming.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Ruthiecat on March 21, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I was surprised to find that this book had almost slipped me by. I am usually up to speed on her books. This book was just as amazing and magical as all her Weetzie Bat books. At 26, I was just as enthralled as when I discovered Block's books over 10 years ago. In fact, her mid-life crisis kind of mirrored what I am going through now faced with growing older. I loved it.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Amanda E. Thomsen on June 25, 2006
Format: Hardcover
How comforting to know how Weetzie and her family are doing! I thought this book was excellent. I read it quickly, telling my husband to shut up when he tried to interupt.

Some of the reviews mentioned the 9/11 thing was a little heavy but I didn't get that, it was mentioned once- and Max always was a little intense.

God, I hope there's more!

I loved Weetzie before, but now... Wow!
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Kim~ on August 8, 2005
Format: Hardcover
From the minute the UPS man delivered my book last week I was glued to the pages eating up every word of Weetzie's trip out of the cottage. I loved it so much and feel as though I actually was right there with her on her journey of love. The characters, scenery and images that Francesca Lia Block has woven into this take are as always, breathtaking and sparkling with love and light. I feel maybe there is something left unrevealed though, possibly concerning Witch Baby and her quest to find what she is looking for. Reading this book was like going to a reunion. All the characters we know and love are there as well as some new additions who OF COURSE we fall head over heels in love with. (H.D., Pan, and many others...I won't spoil it!!) Also this story's take on fashion brings to mind an essay that FLB wrote in Fresh Yarn about punk fashion, and couture coming together in different phases of our life. I love that FLB can write about bands we loved so much that we, as well as Weetzie, and FLB also saw and loved while growing up. It makes me shiver and get that feeling, like when you hear music that will eventually come to change your life. As a mother I love how Weetzie wishes love and happiness for her daughter's and once again see how FLB brings such a great sense of alternative motherhood into this story. I know that I am always looking for other mom's who are into different music and different clothes and FLB has embodied Weetzie as just this sort of mom, which coincedently FLB is as well.

I just adored this book, I devoured it in an hour and can't wait to see where Weetzie and FLB will go next. Aren't we expecting another FLB in October? Or is that 2006...the sooner, the better. This is one magical author, woman, mother and goddess.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Brenda L. Toth on February 28, 2006
Format: Hardcover
I am obsessed with Francesca Lia Block. As a 16 year old, I feel like I can really relate to her stories. I have read all of her books and the Dangerous Angels series is one of my favorites, so I was skeptical upon reading this book because Weetzie is all grown up. However, I was in for a pleasant surprise. This book still has all the magic of her others, and is interesting in a different way. I enjoyed catching up with Weetzie, Witch Baby, Cherokee, etc. so many years later. My only complaint is that her style in this book was slightly different, but I guess it had to be because times had changed for Weetzie. The book also made me a bit depressed about getting older. Regardless, I really enjoyed the book and will read it many times again. A definite read.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Frances Klopotic on December 27, 2006
Format: Paperback
A friend gave me a copy of "Weetzie Bat" in the late 90's and told me I must read it because I was very much Weetzie. Unsure what she meant, I took the book and devoured it in one brief sitting. Since then, I've read all the books in the "Dangerous Angels" series, as well as other non-Weetzie titles, and go back to them often. Block's word pictures and fantasy scapes thrill me to no end. Her imagery moves me.

I recently purchased "Necklace of Kisses" and was totally blown away by this book. After recently turning 40 myself, I found I could relate to Weetzie's search for self at the beginning of midlife. This book reinforced the truth that life doesn't end at 40...in some ways, it begins anew.

To anyone contemplating this book (especially those hip New Wave/punk grrls from the 80's who are turning 40 soon) please take a chance on it. It will show you that you can still be you as you are, no matter what age you may be.

Here's to the Weetzie in us all!
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