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Meet Lila Moscowitz, a smart-mouthed, Jewish American beauty with a voracious appetite for sex, a remarkable talent for outrageous lies, and an unerring knack for screwing up her life. An accomplished poet, renowned for writing "smut and filth in terza rima," she goes about her life in Pure Poetry with enough attitude and verve to win your heart forever. But since fleeing Meet Lila Moscowitz, a smart-mouthed, Jewish American beauty with a voracious appetite for sex, a remarkable talent for outrageous lies, and an unerring knack for screwing up her life. An accomplished poet, renowned for writing "smut and filth in terza rima," she goes about her life in Pure Poetry with enough attitude and verve to win your heart forever. But since fleeing the all-consuming passion of her marriage to Max, the sexy German, she can no longer compose so much as a couplet; ghosts have taken over her Greenwich Village apartment, and the contrast between her feelings for her present lover and her former husband is breaking her heart. And neither her best friend, Carmen, nor her cross-dressing analyst, Leon, is able to soothe her angst over her impending thirty eighth birthday, an occasion fraught with a thirty-seven year tradition of emotional devastation. But time waits for no woman, and the dreaded birthday does bring insight: Love can be undone by the same desires that nurture it. Lila knows that she has got to take action, and in doing so she comes to realize some startling truths about herself, her capacity for love, and the nature of true freedom. Binnie Kirshenbaum's voice has been acclaimed by critics and readers alike. Already a bestselling author in Germany, Kirshenbaum demonstrates a brilliant maturity in Pure Poetry. Not since Erica Jong's Fear of Flying has a novel so captured a woman's heart and desires. Readers will cheer Pure Poetry for its heady mix of humor and sadness, and for its slyly unsettling visions of modern life.


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Meet Lila Moscowitz, a smart-mouthed, Jewish American beauty with a voracious appetite for sex, a remarkable talent for outrageous lies, and an unerring knack for screwing up her life. An accomplished poet, renowned for writing "smut and filth in terza rima," she goes about her life in Pure Poetry with enough attitude and verve to win your heart forever. But since fleeing Meet Lila Moscowitz, a smart-mouthed, Jewish American beauty with a voracious appetite for sex, a remarkable talent for outrageous lies, and an unerring knack for screwing up her life. An accomplished poet, renowned for writing "smut and filth in terza rima," she goes about her life in Pure Poetry with enough attitude and verve to win your heart forever. But since fleeing the all-consuming passion of her marriage to Max, the sexy German, she can no longer compose so much as a couplet; ghosts have taken over her Greenwich Village apartment, and the contrast between her feelings for her present lover and her former husband is breaking her heart. And neither her best friend, Carmen, nor her cross-dressing analyst, Leon, is able to soothe her angst over her impending thirty eighth birthday, an occasion fraught with a thirty-seven year tradition of emotional devastation. But time waits for no woman, and the dreaded birthday does bring insight: Love can be undone by the same desires that nurture it. Lila knows that she has got to take action, and in doing so she comes to realize some startling truths about herself, her capacity for love, and the nature of true freedom. Binnie Kirshenbaum's voice has been acclaimed by critics and readers alike. Already a bestselling author in Germany, Kirshenbaum demonstrates a brilliant maturity in Pure Poetry. Not since Erica Jong's Fear of Flying has a novel so captured a woman's heart and desires. Readers will cheer Pure Poetry for its heady mix of humor and sadness, and for its slyly unsettling visions of modern life.

30 review for Pure Poetry

  1. 4 out of 5

    Ladyce West

    Voltei a um livro que li no finalzinho do ano passado, Poesia Pura de Binnie Kirshenbaum, [tradução de Lourdes Menegale], publicado no Brasil em 2002. Cansada da mesmice dos best-sellers, este livro mostrou-se bom antídoto para o tédio. Não se trata de obra prima merecedora de prêmio, mas uma distração inteligente, com uma heroína pronta para seduzir essa leitora. Lila Moscowitz é tipicamente nova-iorquina, com um pouco mais de trinta anos, grandessíssima mentirosa que ocasionalmente racionaliza Voltei a um livro que li no finalzinho do ano passado, Poesia Pura de Binnie Kirshenbaum, [tradução de Lourdes Menegale], publicado no Brasil em 2002. Cansada da mesmice dos best-sellers, este livro mostrou-se bom antídoto para o tédio. Não se trata de obra prima merecedora de prêmio, mas uma distração inteligente, com uma heroína pronta para seduzir essa leitora. Lila Moscowitz é tipicamente nova-iorquina, com um pouco mais de trinta anos, grandessíssima mentirosa que ocasionalmente racionaliza suas fábulas: “é um daqueles casos em que uma mentira personifica uma verdade maior. Uma verdade metafórica, porque a verdade literal serviria apenas para distorcer a realidade…” [15]. Poeta de sucesso, sem pudor na linguagem ou no sexo, encontra-se permanentemente estressada, sem poder escrever uma linha satisfatória, desde que seu casamento com Max terminou. Angustiada com tarefas cotidianas e vida amorosa insossa, quer ser especial, como qualquer heroína de Woody Allen ou Almodóvar e um pouco das mulheres de Sex and the City. Lila passa os dias pensando no casamento falido. Enquanto isso aproveitamos de pequenas e deliciosas reflexões cotidianas, em passagens até mesmo prosaicas, como uma visita a um hospital, que valem ser ressaltadas. “É cruel, pensei, levar flores para pessoas que estão morrendo. É como se você estivesse apressando o funeral. Sem falar em esfregar no nariz deles a fragilidade da vida. Uma lembrança brutal de como uma coisa suave e fresca torna-se marrom nas bordas, o perfume se transforma em mau cheiro, tudo numa questão de dias. Os moribundos não precisam ter isso num vaso na mesa-de-cabeceira”[76]. Lila não quer a vida comum, porque ela é só “para os que não fazem questão do melhor.” Procura desesperadamente sentir-se especial, e aí está a fonte do desespero e a prisão em que se encontra. Definitivamente uma mulher contemporânea, que se imagina merecedora de muito mais do que o que consegue, vive correndo de lugar em lugar, de pessoa em pessoa, em círculo com assustadora velocidade, à procura do que parece inatingível: felicidade e satisfação consigo mesma. Lila é adorável na sua franqueza, mas às vezes cruel. Inteligente, ela mostra a desconcertante procura por uma felicidade inatingível. Talvez seja o humor a característica mais encantadora deste livro, quer nas observações do dia a dia, quer nas justificativas que Lila encontra ou fabrica para si mesma, um sorriso é inescapável do leitor atento. Encontrei-me frequentemente suspendendo a leitura para poder refletir sobre o que acabara de ler, com a sensação de surpresa e diversão sobre o ponto de vista adotado. Fora isso, Poesia Pura é um livro sem maiores ambições, cuja grande virtude está no entretenimento inteligente.

  2. 4 out of 5

    Maurits de Bruijn

    Jaren geleden werd ik verliefd op Un almost perfect moment (enorme aanrader) maar dit liet me, op de joodse grapjes na, onberoerd.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kerry

    Binnie Kirshenbaum has destroyed me for reading other writers. I’m trying. But her timing is so impeccable and her words, hilarious and wrenchingly deep, well... it’s hard to move on.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Fay

    I am so glad I discovered this writer while just browsing in the library. I LOVE her writing style. The main character in this novel is hard not to love, despite some serious flaws. Kirshenbaum is VERY witty and crazy smart. Only real complaints are that the ending gets too abruptly wrapped up. It didn't have the strength of the rest of the novel, and there are a few gaps I felt like needed filling in, in terms of the main character's obsessive relationship to Max. But overall enjoyed the book i I am so glad I discovered this writer while just browsing in the library. I LOVE her writing style. The main character in this novel is hard not to love, despite some serious flaws. Kirshenbaum is VERY witty and crazy smart. Only real complaints are that the ending gets too abruptly wrapped up. It didn't have the strength of the rest of the novel, and there are a few gaps I felt like needed filling in, in terms of the main character's obsessive relationship to Max. But overall enjoyed the book immensely. Kirshenbaum is definitely one of my new favorites.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Nan Kirkpatrick

    I picked up this book because it looked like fluff. I love the classics and the pop icons as much as anybody, but let's face it--sometimes a girl needs some fluff. It wasn't what I expected at all. The characters are well-written, the story is lively and well-told, and this book is full of passages that are totally quote-worthy. And there is some serious insight going on in this book--but you could totally take it to the beach. I picked up this book because it looked like fluff. I love the classics and the pop icons as much as anybody, but let's face it--sometimes a girl needs some fluff. It wasn't what I expected at all. The characters are well-written, the story is lively and well-told, and this book is full of passages that are totally quote-worthy. And there is some serious insight going on in this book--but you could totally take it to the beach.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Cecelia

    Meh. A few great passages, but separated by a lot of self-absorbed crap. I almost had to institute my rule - that you have to continue reading a book until (100 - your age). Luckily this book had a well-written passage circa page 70 to save it, or I would have dumped it earlier. The main character was fairly three-dimensional, but many of those facets were irritating. There wasn't really a beginning or a middle, and the end was premature and oversimplified. Meh. A few great passages, but separated by a lot of self-absorbed crap. I almost had to institute my rule - that you have to continue reading a book until (100 - your age). Luckily this book had a well-written passage circa page 70 to save it, or I would have dumped it earlier. The main character was fairly three-dimensional, but many of those facets were irritating. There wasn't really a beginning or a middle, and the end was premature and oversimplified.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Marc

    Brash and interesting, but not great. A lot of Jewish angst, which I can relate to.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Jodi

    This was a very good book - I was pleasantly surprised. For all the women who have committment issues and place the blame of the failure of the relationship on the man - this one is for you.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Kristi

    This was an okay read - I never got attached to the main character - she wasn't all that likeable - but the story kept me interested enough to finish it. This was an okay read - I never got attached to the main character - she wasn't all that likeable - but the story kept me interested enough to finish it.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Gato Negro

    A thirty-something Jewish woman's search for happiness. Well written. A thirty-something Jewish woman's search for happiness. Well written.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Cherie

    A- Hilarious book. A pathological liar's life, how she messes up love, and how she is a little bit nutty at times. A- Hilarious book. A pathological liar's life, how she messes up love, and how she is a little bit nutty at times.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Jody

  13. 4 out of 5

    Lesa

  14. 4 out of 5

    Carolyn

  15. 4 out of 5

    Susan Nehring

  16. 5 out of 5

    nicole

  17. 5 out of 5

    Renee

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. It was work getting through this. Donated afterwards.

  18. 4 out of 5

    Agnes

  19. 4 out of 5

    Sarah

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sandy

  21. 4 out of 5

    Laurent Assouad

  22. 4 out of 5

    Stacey

  23. 5 out of 5

    Jill Jacobson

  24. 4 out of 5

    David

  25. 5 out of 5

    Bookworm Adventure Girl

  26. 4 out of 5

    Libby

  27. 4 out of 5

    Tarrastarr

  28. 5 out of 5

    Lisa

  29. 5 out of 5

    Mary Yamaguchi

  30. 5 out of 5

    Emer Tannam

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