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Kiss and Tango: Looking for Love in Buenos Aires Hardcover – Deckle Edge, June 28, 2005
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From Publishers Weekly
When 30-year-old Palmer announced she was abandoning her Manhattan apartment, ditching her stressful advertising job and leaving the unhappy singles scene to take up professional tango dancing in Buenos Aires, her upper-crust parents were understandably dubious. Of course, the tango isn't just a dance—it's a grand metaphor for sexual pursuit. Beginning with a nod from the man, signifying his desire for a particular woman, tango continues in a series of moves resembling stylized foreplay. After a few agonizing years of trying to combine her Manhattan day life with a tango nightlife, in 1999, Palmer moved to Argentina. She spent almost every night until dawn dancing at various venues, occasionally bringing home a partner, and her trials on the dance floor—aching feet, battered shins—were only compounded in the bedroom. After absorbing five years of diary entries, readers will feel at home with Buenos Aires street life and almost accustomed to the retrosexual politics of the tango scene, so when Palmer says things like, "I wish all men knew how I long to be treated like an object," they sort of know what she means. Although feminists may bristle, other readers may well enjoy Palmer's engagingly reckless spirit.
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Everything is exciting in Argentina! The climate! The people! The dancing! Once readers get past the immature use of exclamation marks, they will find an interesting memoir of a thirtysomething woman disenchanted with her high-powered advertising-executive job who yearns to indulge her true passion--the tango. In a cheeky exchange with her conservative father, the author wheedles enough money to live on in Buenos Aires for her "education" in the art of the tango. There follows a parade of possible dance partners and lovers, some dashing, others dullards, but all well versed in the sexy dance. Readers should not expect to learn very much about the dance and its history, the shock of uprooting from one culture to another, or how a novice becomes an accomplished dancer. The writing is unpolished. But readers who wonder what it's like to give up a lucrative career to follow their bliss will enjoy the breathless tone and the author's unaffected appreciation for her new life experiences. Kaite Mediatore
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
Top customer reviews
Instead it's the tale of a spoiled thirty-year-old (!) "girl" who talks her wealthy family into supporting her whim of becoming a professional tango dancer in Buenos Aires. Along the way to the realization two years later that it will never happen, she seduces and sleeps with every Argentine male she can get her hands on, even the delivery boy.
Without previous dance training (she worked in advertising in New York), she had a fantasy of dancing on stage, and at the same time, of finding her "Other Half of the Orange" who also is a Tango God.
Set up comfortably in a luxury apartment and spending her parents' $2,000 U.S. per month on tango classes, shoes and cafes con leche, she brings man after man to her bed, and sometimes two at a time, and doesn't spare us the details.
The book only gets interesting at the end when the Economic Crisis hits Argentina in 2001, but running from the turmoil, Marina quickly escapes to her relatives' elegant country ranch far from the disquieting events in the city. And then, giving up the dream, she returns to the States.
The writing is full of cliches, the lovers are indistinguishable, the women invariably turn out to be "bitches."
So I'm still waiting for someone to write about Argentine Tango in Buenos Aires. Slutty sex is everywhere.
Kiss and Tango is the story of a brave girl, Marina, who did just that. It is her adventure story of her pursuit of that, which she wanted to perfect... The Argentinean Tango, and the world that revolves around it.
Her story takes us though her travels, trials, thoughts, moods, and experiences of her pursuit of being a professional Tango performer. Her search for her Tango soul mate. It is a fascinating tale of struggle and perseverance. It is written in the contemporary vernacular, as if she were there telling it to personally.
Reading Kiss and Tango, is like being in a cafe with a good friend over a cup of coffee, listening to each other's adventures and musings. Its fascinating, its fun, and it makes you wish to just let go, and follow your own adventure.
Buy it if you like romance, Latin culture, and going through a woman's head.
after reading it once though, that was it, i wouldnt keep the book but i would explore the tango subject more.