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Mouth to Mouth: ‘Gripping... Shades of Patricia Highsmith and Donna Tartt’ Vogue

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Turning up at the airport for his flight, the narrator of this story bumps into his old f

I just wanted him to be good, though, I wanted to feel that I had done a good thing not only for him but for all the people he came into contact with. After some small talk, Cook invites the man to wait out the delay with him in the first-class lounge.Two paintings command longer descriptions in Mouth to Mouth: the one that hangs in Francis’s office, and the large diptych that catches Jeff’s eye in Sotheby’s (p.

A gloriously addicting tale of decisions and deception… Despite the story being a short once, it doesn’t lack suspense — and Wilson’s ending delivers. And yes I suppose it's also about the way every generation becomes what it starts out hating, about the way we construct narratives of our lives that we may or may not actually believe ourselves, about the dangers of being young and aimless and easily dazzled.

I’m happy to say that this novel lived up to the its longlisting draw – it started off slow, but it slowly picked up momentum and suspense until I was shocked and pleased by the ending. Ripley novel, as the tale-teller, a man once admired by our protagonist when they were both in collage, plays with the other's attraction as he unspools his tale, in which his old admirer is a alternately charmed and alarmed by a fantastic tale of love, fate and a meteoric rise--set in the world contemporary art. As Wilson brings his work to its rapid-paced conclusion, he—like a pilot doing everything he can to stick a tight landing—jettisons everything that is not absolutely necessary to the plot so that he can reach his conclusion at the right time, with the right force. The writing itself is clear and direct with short chapters more suited to a commercially-driven thriller novel.

I sat at the gate at JFK, having red-eyed my way from Los Angeles, exhausted, minding my own business, reflecting on what I’d seen the night before, shortly after takeoff, shortly before sleep, something I’d never seen before from an airplane. For Jeff Cook this responsibility plays out in a most unusual way and much is left to the reader's interpretation.It was never shortlisted, so I forgot about it again, but as I near the end of my calendar year I’m picking up books that I kept meaning to get to, and never did. While waiting for a delayed flight to Berlin, Jeff bumped into an old acquaintance from UCLA and the two spent the downtime in the First Class Lounge—Jeff’s treat. How do the themes of these narratives—and the rest of the lead-up to Jeff’s saga, including the narrator’s memories and observations—echo throughout the novel? A couple working as chauffeurs have been accused of stealing millions from the founder of Tin House Books. There’s plenty of satisfaction in watching the characters navigate the blurred line between plausibility and truth.

Sly, suspenseful, and engrossing, Mouth to Mouth masterfully blurs the line between opportunity and exploitation, self-respect and self-delusion, fact and fiction—exposing the myriad ways we deceive each other, and ourselves. The cool nervous clarity of the prose enmeshes the reader in a trap of complicity, one snapping shut on narrator and reader at the same instant. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our Terms of Service, Privacy Policy ( Your California Privacy Rights) and Do Not Sell or Share My Personal Information.But once I realized the narrator is irrelevant and the whole point of the story is Jeff’s weird experience, I settled into the story. He discovers this man is a wealthy, famous art collector named Francis Arsenault, and much to his own surprise, Jeff becomes curious about Francis’s life, and begins to follow him around to learn more about the man he saved. Although Francis does not seem to recognize him as the man who saved his life, he nevertheless casts his legendary eye on Jeff and sees something worthy.

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