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Editorial Reviews

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

Publisher's Summary

Mystery writer and dabbling recreational sleuth Sophie Katz is head over heels in love - with a three-bedroom Victorian. She's just got to have it, despite a few drawbacks. Her slimy ex is the realtor. The rich, creepy seller wants her to join San Francisco's spirited Specter Society. And her first tour of the house reveals, well, a lifeless body clutching a cameo with a disturbing history of its own.

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.

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • 4 out of 5 stars
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Sophie Katz Rules!

I admit to being an ardent Kyra Davis fan and have all of her titles in my audio library.
The first three titles were also narrated by Gabra Zackman. Usually I love her voice and the unique way she captures all of the individual characters, their little foibles and nuances etc...but I have to agree with the previous reviewer who also noticed that Gabra's treatment of Lust, Loathing and a Little Lip Gloss was not as consistant in that she had a tendency to do this little 'up speak' thingy which after a while became quite distracting, if not a little annoying at times (sorry Gabra...nothing personal!)
Having said that, Gabra is one of my favourite narrators and she portrays Sophie Katz et al brilliantly. This latest Sophie Katz mystery is a little different..we see a more settled and mature protagonist. A woman in love and as ever, courting danger with her lovable but slightly 'Kookie' friends coming to her rescue. Highly entertaining and always intriguing. I devoured it with a voracious appetite and can't wait for Kyra's next book.

8 of 8 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

Didn't want it to end..

Lust, Loathing, and a Little Lip Gloss is another great book in the Sophie Katz series. I loved this one just as much as the others, Sophie is back..stumbling into some sort of mystery that she just must solve and I love the quick wit that makes you laugh out loud while reading. I like that her and Anatoly relationship is progessing nicley with each book. The paranormal side had me wondering how she was going to solve it without believing in ghosts, but knowing Sophie (who is to practal for that) I knew there was a way, I just couldn't see it. And that is what I love about these books..I don't have them figured out within the first few pages and it always provides a laugh. Marcus is one of my favorite characters -I laughed so hard at the restuarant scene and his shoes ;-) I have to agree with another review I read on here, after reading these books I just had to go out to starbucks and try a frappuccino! I can't say I'm a fan of them but I am a fan of Kyra Davis and Sophie Katz.
Gabra Zackman is one of the best narrators I have ever listened to. She does the voices for the characters perfectly.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Bob
  • Lufkin, TX, USA
  • 08-14-09

Wonderful Story, Wonderful Narration

Lust, Loathing, and a Little Lip Gloss is another great book in the Sophie Katz series. I loved this one just as much as the others, Sophie is back with her stellar sleuth skills and quick wit that makes you laugh out loud while reading. Many times while reading this book I got the “is that lady crazy look” for busting out laughing in public. Anatoly is sexy and sweet as ever and I was so happy with the way these two are progressing in their relationship. The paranormal side of the story keeps it very interesting and gives a twist to the type of mystery going on. Marcus is one of my favorite characters and he is back for the fun, even if it is unknowingly. You also get a better insight on Sophie and her fathers relationship before he passed away, which develops the character of Sophie even more making you love her even more. I counted down the days between Obsession, Deceit, and Really Dark Chocolate and this book and I will do the same for the next Sophie Katz mystery. The only thing I would warn about buying this book is the amount of money you spend at Starbucks, every time I read a Sophie book I have to have a frappuccino!
Gabra Zackman is one of the best narrators I've listened to. She gets the voices for the characters perfectly.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Margo
  • Woodstock, IL, United States
  • 06-21-09

Lust,Loathing and a Little Lip Gloss

I just loved it, if you enjoy Janet Evanovich books you will like this one too.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

They are all nuts

Ms Davis is very good at coming up with oddball characters. A bit over the top, but I guess that's what makes them fun. The narrator is good, but there seemed to be a few times she got bored.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Charlene
  • Seattle, WA, United States
  • 06-13-09

an amusing listen, in keeping with the series

I've listened to all of the books in the series and enjoyed them all. They are each diverting and funny. In this one, however, the narrator tilts her voice up at the end of sentences, frequently and in some odd places, which was a bit distracting.

5 of 6 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Good, until the part with the LGBT slur

I enjoyed this book - the mystery was humming along, the characters interesting, the narration was stellar, and then.... I have to be somewhat vague to avoid spoilers, but the main character uses a fairly derogatory term for an LGBT character. After learning sensitive sexual information and a character’s status, she immediately outs the character to the very next person she speaks to. Then she chortles about getting to disclose this information to the character’s partner. Like I said, no spoilers, but LGBT people have been killed when being outted in this manner.

Having the main character act and speak this way came as a great surprise, considering the book had just been fairly sensitive about a young person dealing with the possibility of being gay. I haven’t see other reviews dealing with this concern so I wanted to mention it for other listeners. I’m no expert on how to write about this issue, but I just can’t continue listening to a book with a main character who used this slur and rubs her hands in glee at the thought of outting someone.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Meh

The stories are getting weaker as the series goes on. They can't all be winners I guess.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Lots of fun

I don't think even Kyra Davis could object to me pointing out that this is not the sort of great literature that will change your life, your mind or your day. But it's not supposed to be. It's literary cake. Pure sugary fun. A bit of love, a bit of romance and a lot of action.

For a good time call Sophie!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

I enjoy light reading - a heroine with redeeming traits despite her faults, an intriguing mystery to follow, additional characters to provide lightness and humor. Unfortunately, this book tried and failed on all fronts. The main character is especially disappointing, she is simply a spoiled woman with no reason to forgive the annoying attitude, no reason to believe that she deserves the guy in the end and no reason to believe that she deserves the credit for the solution of the mystery.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful