Mystery novelist Sophie Katz is a tart, peppery vodka gimlet of a gal, gadding about foggy San Francisco, sleuthing crimes in a chic, papery coat. Like any hard-boiled dame worth her smelling salts, however, withering Sophie guards a mushy heart. "Anatoly knew the details of me," she gushes, when her dishy Russian private eye suitor remembers her fussy coffee order to the letter. Even at 31, Sophie gets goose bumps when she's jittery and is peevish with her two-year-old nephew. She's petty and rams through small talk. She is likeably damaged.
Lust, Loathing and a Little Lip Gloss is audiobook four in the Sophie Katz mystery series, though each volume stands alone as easy, breezy escapism, so you can skip downloading sequentially. This is foremost a whodunit and author Kyra Davis plots Lip Gloss around the stagy killing of blue-blood Oscar; his creaking Victorian mansion, snapped up by Sophie; her bad egg ex-husband, and current realtor, Scott; his chilly swizzle stick girlfriend, Venus; and the quirky Specter Society, which holds séances to channel "disembodied spirits".
Gabra Zackman is the hypnotic narrator of Lip Gloss. As Sophie, she creeps a scratchy world-weariness into her inflections, hinting that the trademark Katz sass might be half-invented. Zackman instinctively connects with her characters, wiring Scott's boyish charisma to a chatty pace while attaching terse Anatoly to gnashing pauses. It's risky for an audiobook narrator to spin through nearly two dozen characters plus a plot hooked to the paranormal to claim believability. But Zackman teases out subtle voice distinctions and accents (Italian, Russian, Yiddish) until the prospect of communing with the dead seems slightly more believable than Sophie landing a fully renovated, three-bedroom house in Ashbury Heights. Prime real estate, after all, trumps ghosts. Nita Rao
There's no way Sophie is going to give up the ghost on her dreams of stained glass and original woodwork, though--even when things become officially weird. A Society member is found with a slashed throat, and Sophie's house might as well be yelling, "GET...OUT!" She's hearing footsteps, lights are turning themselves off and her stuff keeps moving inexplicably. To top it off, boyfriend Anatoly thinks it's all in her head.
Sophie is 99 percent sure her problems are caused by someone six feet tall instead of six feet under, but the only way to be sure is to track down the killer - before he pushes her kicking and screaming to the other side.
Solve another case with Sophie.
©2009 Kyra Davis; (P)2009 Audible, Inc.
I won't claim that I knew exactly what was going to happen next, but none of the characters surprised me, there were cliches everywhere - in the plot, in the language, in the "clues" - and everyone always did what they would in the movie version. That is to say the characters were one-sided and the plot no more intricate or interesting than if you were going through a screenplay that had been chopped out of a richer piece of literature. It was fun at points, but not really worth the time.
I love her books.. and this is another great one.. but the voice is really off... I hope the others are back to normal.
.... it is not 5 stars, but Sophie Katz is the one and only out there remotely like her. Kyra Davis is a unique writer in these ways: comparatively fresh; good use of language; intelligent but not too sassy, not trying to be sassy, but is sassy. Gabra Zackman is believable as Sophie Katz's voice.... I believe the reader is so in tune with the character she may as well be Sophie.
As it is recommended to change your shampoo every now and then to spruce things up, so I read every book in this series to liven up cozy banter.
Maybe it is just me. I really had to keep forcing myself to chug through the first part. Then be swept away, staying awake until 2 am to listen to the middle part, absolutely rejoicing in the peripheral characters. Then back to chugging through the tailend. I felt like the story was decent, the characters great, the constant worshipping praise of the main character made it sluggish. I loved the other characters with their humanness, flaws and good points.
having read 4 of her five books, Kyra Davis can write better than most women and all men. I truly cannot choose the best except to say the one I am reading at the time always seems the best. Read them in order to really appreciate them. J M
This was the best Sophie Katz yet. I didn't think they could get any better but they did. My friends and I are into supernatural and paranormal so I could relate to this one the most.
Now that I have finished all of the Sophie Katz novels that Krya has written so far, I just hope she keeps writing these for many years to come.
She really makes my long commute to work just fly by.
I was so excited that there was a new book to this series! I needed to know what was next. I love the charactes and the narriator is awesome. Love that it's the same for all her books.
This is my first and will be my last of this series. I just couldn't warm to the main character and found little charm in the story (which seemed forced) but I did laugh occasionally.
I am almost through with this audio book and I can already say "I love it". Maybe it is because I have heard all of Kyra Davis' books read by Gabra Zackman. I listed to over 4 hours in one night! I can't wait until she comes out with another! Story- Fun. Voices- Life like. Situations- Unexpected. Romance- Believable.
Nothing not to love!!
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