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A Lovely, Indecent Departure by [Gilbert, Steven Lee]
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A Lovely, Indecent Departure Kindle Edition

3.6 out of 5 stars 51 customer reviews

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Length: 284 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
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Editorial Reviews


"The well-crafted plot is meted out at a steady pace, continually feeding readers' need to know and simultaneously whetting the appetite for more."--Kirkus Reviews

"Riveting...perfect for any kind of literary escape."--The Wake Weekly

"A Lovely, Indecent Departure is a choice and much recommended addition to general fiction collections."--Midwest Book Review

"Gilbert has written a masterful debut."-- Sandy Kirkland, Booksie's Blog

"The quality in this book is a perfect example of Indie authors being able to hold their own in regards to larger publishing house authors and that those readers who dismiss Indie authors are truly missing out."--Naomi Blackburn, Founder Sisterhood of the Traveling Book

" unassuming work, one that doesn't seek to draw you in with cheap gimmicks and plot tricks. It presents itself as it is, quiet, steady, and ultimately charming."--Shannon Fox, Isle of Books

From the Author

Author Awards
2007 Emerging Artist Grant for Literature, Durham Arts Council
Thank you for visiting my Amazon Author Page and for considering my book, A Lovely, Indecent Departure. Writing it was a process that covered several years, during which the manuscript underwent many, many drafts and required much patience on the part of myself as the writer, as well as my wife and family.

When in 2007, with their support, I chose to pursue writing full time, I had no real idea of what I was getting myself into. I only knew I wanted to write. Such an endeavor is not without risk and in the months leading up to my leaving my day job, we adjusted our lifestyle and saved what we could to afford me this opportunity. My wife and I talked to our children about doing with less and showed them through example the importance of following one's dream. Even when chronic illness threatened to derail the plan, we helped them to understand that dreams require sacrifice, a life lesson, we hope, they espouse themselves as adults.

 Please visit my website to learn more about this journey, and thanks again for stopping by.

Product Details

  • File Size: 500 KB
  • Print Length: 284 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 0985336501
  • Publication Date: March 19, 2012
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B007MQN99Y
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,270,941 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
4.5 Stars out of 5: A family drama written in the style of a crime thriller which satisfies emotionally and examines complex themes with broad perspective. A fast-paced but thorough look into the nature of divorce and its effects on parents and children, with some great descriptions of Italy, which all combine in a well-balanced novel and deserving winner of an Emerging Artist Grant for literature.

Check out The Unbound Underground profile to find the full review!
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Anna is a divorced mother whose ex-husband, Evan, has custody of their son. As Evan cruelly cuts off Anna from their son, she has to decide to continue fighting through the system or abscond with her son to her native Italy. As they live in secret, Anna faces many dilemmas: What is best for her son? What is best for her? Are they the same? How do you balance safety in the future with the need to be connected to the past? As the authorities get closer, Anna must determine what to do -- once you've committed one of the most desperate of acts, what's next?

It is always a pleasure to find a book that is well-edited, quick-paced, and an interesting story. A Lovely, Indecent Departure is a one of those rare finds. The characters are wonderfully complex and the story drew me in right away.

Written in a more literary style than most indie books, its many themes and shades of gray would make A Lovely, Indecent Departure a great book club / discussion book.
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Format: Paperback
A Lovely, Indecent Departure is the gripping story of one mother's love for her son. When Anna loses custody of her son, Oliver, she gives up everything she knows and goes into hiding with him. Fleeing to Italy, Oliver and Anna start over, with the help of Anna's extended family. Unfortunately, Evan, Oliver's father, is one step behind them, and with the help of a private investigator, soon tracks them down. This is a fast-paced story that brings up a lot of questions regarding ethics and parenting.

This novel brings together many genres, effortlessly. Merging crime, family drama, action, chic-lit, and intoxicating landscapes, A Lovely, Indecent Departure is captivating. While, at first, we aren't made fully aware of the reasons for Anna's choices, it becomes increasingly clear what her motives are, and Evan does not fail us in the role of the antagonist. While this type of story has been done before, Mr. Gilbert manages to draw us into his characters' perspectives in a fresh way. No matter what side of the custody battle you identify with, you will be riveted to the very last page.

(Review written by Charlene, a Literary R&R book review blog team member)
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Format: Paperback
Steven Lee Gilbert writes with conviction and purpose in his debut novel, A Lovely, Indecent Departure, but he has everything all wrong. The novel plods along slowly and tediously, and Gilbert's decision not to let the reader into the minds of his characters makes the story lifeless as well. Because the reader doesn't know what's going on inside their heads, the characters are more like empty vessels than human beings, awaiting direction from the author. When Gilbert makes them do something shocking, I don't feel he's earned it, because the plot leading up to that moment gives no indication the character was capable of such action. The novel wants to be morally ambiguous as well, but even here it fails. In order to achieve this goal would have required greater insight into the situation and into the motivations of its characters. Failing to provide such information, the novel ends up being morally disturbing instead.

The plot seems intriguing at first. Anna, a divorced mother, decides to abduct her son, Oliver, who was given custody to his father, Evan. Anna gets to see Oliver on weekends, but Evan does everything he can to ensure she seems him for as little time as possible. On this particularly weekend, Evan demands that Anna bring Oliver back four hours earlier than she has him for, but Anna has other plans.

It's clear that we're supposed to cheer for Anna and view Evan as the bad guy. The problem is, Gilbert fails to provide any proof that Evan is a bad guy until some plot developments towards the end that are not earned. That the sheriff and a private investigator suspect Evan is to blame for his wife's actions makes the reader more sympathetic to him. These characters seem convinced that Evan is a monster, but nothing convincing suggests that he is.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I enjoyed the book story line. I thought the author did an outstanding job of detailing the mother's struggle with having her son taken away, and her subsequent parentnapping and going into hiding. The book also contains wonderful descriptions of the different cities in the U.S. and Italy where the story takes place and manages to incorporate several different genres in the process; family drama, crime, travel, and loads of action.

The reader could feel the mother's fear about being found, although it seemed that the mother had not gone that far underground in her attempt to hide. You could identify with her anxiety and I sometimes found myself looking over her shoulder for her. The author also did a very good job showing how difficult it is for the child(ren) to adapt to a different culture and language. The surprise ending of the book definitely catches the reader off guard.

Technically speaking: The lack of translation from Italian to English made it difficult to follow many of the conversations in the book. The characters were well developed and it was quite easy to empathize with their situations, especially the mother. I also liked the way the author used a new chapter when switching back and forth from character to character. I have come across this technique in other books and I find it works well with certain story lines. One other thing that I really had a problem with was the lack of punctuation in the book. Punctuation is used to help the reader distinguish between characters and I found the lack of it very disconcerting, and a great distraction.

While I thought the book was good and worth reading, due to the items I have listed, I am giving the book a 4 star rating.

I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for my unbiased opinion.
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