When obsessed pet owners have pooches or kitties they want immortalized on canvas, Kate Disney is the artist of choice. From her shed (which doubles as a studio and apartment) in London's Primrose Hill, Kate caters to the whims of the rich and famous while herself living a decidedly bohemian existence. The problem is, she has a tendency to cater to her on-again, way-off-again boyfriend as well. Jake is so erratic, that most of her friends don't understand why she even bothers. But it's hard to fall out of love with a man who writes her songs and calls her "Angel", even if he disappears for weeks at a time.
Luckily for Kate, Mirabelle Moncur isn't buying any of that claptrap. Mirri was an actress, a legend in her time. Now, at age 60, she's given up on fame and men and lives in Africa, where she raises lion cubs. But her reclusive nature has done nothing to dull her beauty, mar her incredible figure, or dampen her outrageous joie de vivre.
After sweeping into London to have Kate paint a portrait of her favorite cub, Mirri seizes hold of Kate's life, from the baggy wardrobe to the hopeless taste in men. Under Mirri's tutelage, Kate learns to dance on tables with abandon, drink like a dockworker, and flirt like a goddess. And when her old friend Louis reenters the picture, she begins to see things in a whole new light. But Mirri has secrets that hint at a less than divine future. Now it's Kate's turn to teach Mirri a thing or two about life, love, and being fabulous.
©2005 Clare Naylor; (P)2005 Books on Tape, Inc.
"Laugh-out-loud scenes and authentically touching asides on aging and lifelong yearnings combine in a perfectly balanced, irresistible confection." (Booklist)
I savored every minute of this book. The writing is so well done and the reader is wonderful. I wanted to live in this world and meet these people. Mind you it is strictly for fun and quite a good escape. Ms. Naylor knows how to keep descriptions interesting and short to keep the story moving. It is about relationships and stepping outside of normalcy. I'd love to hear more by this author.
I thought the narrator did an excellent job. She brought the whole book to life for me. I would not have enjoyed the book half as much had it not been an audio book. Had I been reading the book, I would never have done the French accent in my head. I found the characters to be enjoyable and entertaining. I will probably re-listen to the entire book again someday.
This is the first of Clare Naylor's works I've come across - and I'll be looking for more. Keeps you rapt, not too complicated for an audiobook, and the reader does an incredibly good job!
A gadabout with no room for heavy books, so love the audio ones.
I had to struggle to get through this book.
As a previous reviewer has said, the narrator got one character "spot on", but the rest were carbon copies. One for male, one for female.
The whole book felt like it was written under a deadline and needed to "filled in" rather than having any story to tell.
What would I do without audio books?!!
Really enjoyed the relationship that developed between the young artist and the older actress - athough they are at different points in their journeys, their life lessons corresponded perfectly and made for a good read. Was inspiring and uplifting without being too forced or simply achived.
I've just finished this book and thought it was terrific. Well paced with enough peaks and valleys for the characters. This author gave you enough to keep you entertained with an intelligent well thought out story. The reader was wonderful as always. (Just finished the Winter Sea) I've listened to countless Rosalyn Landor reads and I think she is very talented - She sounds younger here. Want to read more Clare Naylor. (Richard's wife)
This book was sooo funny in spots, but you had to wade through the monotone fog of the narrator’s voice to get to it. Because of the narrators drab dead-pan reading of the characters voices (with the one exception of Mirabelle Moncur- she nailed that one) the book did not grab me at first. However, after a good hour or so I was able to get into it. I became captured by the story and was able to listen past the narrator’s voice and really enjoyed the book.
I really enjoyed this book and grew to love many of the deeply flawed, deeply human characters. The main character in the book is throughly drawn and on more than one occasion I found myself identifying with her feelings and gaining insight on inner motivation. The characters are colorful but largely believable and the story while certainly examines love relationships is really about what deep and sincere friendships between women can mean for their lives.
Mom of 3 and a book lover.
The novel gave me very intriguing ideas about how women should be. And I laughed out loud a lot while reading it, especially when the two heroines interact with each other, because they think they know better than the other. But eventually they learn from each other. This makes the novel different and better from other chicklit and of course worth the credit. And the narrator performance makes the novel more enjoyable.
Roslyn Landor is one of those narrators that makes even the worst book that much better. Fortunately, that wasn't an issue for this book. It's certainly light, fluffy fare, but for what it is--it was pretty damn good!
The main character is flawed in a believable and not annoying way, while Miri is all Id. These two become friends despite their differences and help each other work through their relationships.
The publishers summary put me off of this one for a while, so I suggest going through the reader reviews to make your final decision on a purchase.
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