Necklace of Kisses

Francesca Lia Block, Author . HarperCollins $21.95 (240p) ISBN 978-0-06-077751-7

Readers who remember Weetzie Bat and My Secret Agent Lover Man's first kiss (a "kiss about apple pie à la mode with the vanilla creaminess melting in the pie heat") from their YA incarnation may be crushed to learn that they've shared no kisses since September 11, 2001. My Secret Agent Lover Man, though Weetzie's long-time lover, "was now just Max"; Weetzie, whom readers first met in 1989's Weetzie Bat , is now 40. As the novel opens, Weetzie packs a small bag and checks herself into a pink hotel in L.A., "seeking the kiss she had lost." There Weetzie embarks on a quest of sorts. She meets Shelley, whose kiss reveals that she is a mermaid and is the first of the title's necklace of kisses. Each kiss injects a bit more enchantment into Weetzie's life. Block carefully construes the kisses as complete in and of themselves. Weetzie never betrays Max; this is a novel of healing. Weetzie's many fans will most appreciate this reunion with the heroine and her Secret Agent Lover Man, Dirk and Duck and many more. But those just meeting Block's whimsical entourage and sparkling prose will also appreciate the book's message: that magic can be found in stolen moments and, in Dirk's words, though "love is a dangerous angel," it's well worth the risk. (Aug.)

Reviewed on: 06/06/2005
Release date: 08/01/2005
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