Celeste Price is an eighth-grade English teacher in suburban Tampa. She's undeniably attractive. She drives a red Corvette with tinted windows. Her husband, Ford, is rich, square-jawed, and devoted to her.
But Celeste's devotion lies elsewhere. She has a singular sexual obsession: 14-year-old boys. Celeste pursues her craving with sociopathic meticulousness and forethought; her sole purpose in becoming a teacher is to fulfill her passion and provide her access to her compulsion. As the novel opens, fall semester at Jefferson Jr. High is beginning.
In mere weeks, Celeste has chosen and lured the lusciously naive Jack Patrick into her web. Jack is enthralled and in awe of his teacher, and, most important, willing to accept Celeste's terms for a secret relationship - car rides after school; rendezvous at Jack's house while his single father works late; body-slamming encounters in Celeste's empty classroom between periods.
Ever mindful of the danger - the perpetual risk of exposure, Jack's father's own attraction to her, and the ticking clock as Jack leaves innocent boyhood behind - the hyperbolically insatiable Celeste bypasses each hurdle with swift thinking and shameless determination, even when the solutions involve greater misdeeds than the affair itself. In slaking her sexual thirst, Celeste Price is remorseless and deviously free of hesitation, a monstress driven by pure motivation. She deceives everyone, and cares nothing for anyone or anything but her own pleasure.
With crackling, rampantly unadulterated prose, Tampa is a grand, uncompromising, seriocomic examination of want and a scorching literary debut.
©2013 Alissa Nutting (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers
Librarian, blogger, reader
The whole premise of this book is off-putting to some, and if that's how it strikes you just stop there. Because not only is it about an adult woman preying on 14-year-olds, it's quite sexually graphic, and since it's written from Celeste's perspective, the sex is actually pretty sexy. I'm not bothered by anything in fiction (no 14-year-old boys were actually harmed in the writing of this book!) so I found it a bit fascinating. Celeste is a great unlikeable protagonist and I thought the story progressed well all the way to its satisfying ending. I actually tried this one in print first and found the quality of the writing inconsistent, but the audio worked much better for me. The narrator somehow made Celeste's voice more palatable and I binge-listened to this over the long weekend. I like when authors take risks by tackling taboo subjects, and Alissa Nutting pulled it off quite well.
I love books (duh). I've also listened to plenty books from my local library, kinda upset I can't review them here as well :(.
The ending... to start with.
The first half of the book you think that Celest is a highly intelligent female willing to do anything to satisfy her obsession: teenage males. Her wishes are crazy, but very enthralling as well. She's an interesting character to say the least.
Second half of the book she becomes stupid and arrogant and other people like her even more for that. It was annoying and it didn't fit with the character created in the first half. Is like the author wanted us to hate her. And that's cheating.
I would have enjoyed the rational, pervert feminist much more than the beautiful sheltered pedophile. Also, the idea that beautiful people have it easy... don't really dig it. I've seen lots of beautiful people get bullied and ugly ones as well. It's about character. That is what brings you to the top of the chain. And by the end of the story our character completely looses that side and just plays the damsel in distress. And people actually believe her? We're talking about adults here, right? I can't accept that people can be that stupid.
Not really. A good book will be a good book regardless of the genre. I was never really into this type of books, but I heard this one was better so I decided to give it a try. Not sure how soon I'll return to this genre though, based on my friend's recommendations I guess.
I did, in Night Road and Just One Day. She's into character and she's good at what she does. If I wouldn't have looked at the list with the books she read I would have never guessed the 3 books have the same reader. They are all 3 very different genres.
To be honest, I don't think so. Second half bored me to death.
It's a good book for an erotica lover, but not a moralist.
Despite the subject matter, I thoroughly enjoyed this book. It's well-written, the characters and setting are fleshed out, Celeste is abhorrent and I disliked her but I recognized she was too smart, corrupt and conniving for the book to end any other way than how it did. Still, she surprised me, sometimes I was outright shocked, others disgusted. The narrator did a fabulous job as well of conveying Celeste's lack of emotion, her depravity, her sarcasm, disinterest, odd lust and irritation, her sense for self-preservation in every scene. And all the characters were discernible to my ears. Usually I find female narrators difficult to enjoy, even in books with female main characters, but this is encouraging and has left me hopeful.
From the first few lines, I had no interest in the narrator's masturbatory fantasies and machinations. I didn't listen to more than a few minutes.
The was a very well read story of a horrible woman. I enjoyed the story but could not believe how selfish this heifer was.
The delusion the protagonist spun was beyond believable. I am overwhelmed at the lengths to obtain what she wanted. I was itching for her to what she clearly deserved. Her hunger and perverseness was diabolical to the end.
Right down to sitting in her cell and watching the boys in the court room. Truly one to hate.
This book has been a hot topic for sometime now. It's storyline is morbid, and sadly true. Yet, I couldn't tear myself from listening to it. Nutting's allusions are astounding. She really makes you want to keep listening. I ate this book up! Get past the it all and dive in, you won't regret it.
Female Pedophile Tell-All
Probably, the author is a really good writer. I've learned more new words in this book than any other books that I've read so far.
I have not listened to any Kathleen McInerney's performance before, however she is GREAT!
No, it was a really difficult book to sit through because it was so strange to listen to a mind of a pedophile. You can only take a little dose of it at a time because the story can make your skin crawl. However, the performance was exquisite. Probably one of the best female performers I've listened to so far.
This book is pretty graphic in it's sexually content and a little morbid. However, beautifully written and the performance was amazing!.
Every time I sat down, I remembered to sit down, put in my ear buds, and enjoy. This was a great, yet disturbing take on a sexual sociopath who happens to be a teacher. Recommended
This book had its, "whoa! What did I just read?" Moments, but it was a great read. Alissa Nutting did a fantastic job at getting the reader to get in the mind of a sociopath. Give this book a shot!
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