Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Review: The Moment by Douglas Kennedy

Title: The Moment
Author: Douglas Kennedy
Publisher: Atria
Publish Date: November 15, 2011 (Today!!!)
Source: Lucinda Blumenfeld Literary Consulting (This did not affect my review).

Why You're Reading This Book?:

  • You like feeling strong emotions when you read.
  • You're a historical fiction fan.
  • You like gorgeous prose.
What's the Story?:

From Goodreads.com: "Berlin, during the period of perestroika in the 1980s. The male protagonist is a travel writer who falls desperately in love with a beautiful East Berlin woman, Petra. Their passionate relationship is destroyed when he finds out that Petra is a Stasi agent and, worse, that she has been using their relationship to gain information from him. He is devastated at such betrayal, believing that every element of their relationship had been false.

It is only years later, once Petra is dead, that the narrator discovers the truth. Petra was being forced to give information to the Stasi, who were holding her son captive under threats of death. Too late he learns that the relationship was a sincere one -- the feelings were real -- and it was only Petra's fear for her son's life that led to her betrayal of her lover. But the crucial moment, when he had the choice to commit fully to her and find the truth or to walk away, has gone for ever."

My Two Cents:

Okay, first a confession: I love my books very much. I never write in my books, ever. In school, I wouldn't even highlight in my books. When a book is really, really special to me, it gets the special bookmarking treatment. I bookmark passages that I really love. I bookmark the passages that blew me away. I bookmark things that I want to remember!

This is my copy of The Moment:

Now since I've showed my cards and confessed about my book marking habit, I bet you can guess a little bit about how I felt about this book. This is another chunky book (500 plus pages) but I tore through it in a couple settings. I was pulled into the story of Petra and Thomas. Where were they going to end up? What would happen to them? Would anything come together for them in the end? Their relationship really draws you in. Their love is quick but real. It's oh so real!

This book has a great story but also some big ideas. In the book, Thomas talks a lot about moments that change everything. They are the so called watershed moments where you can point to a specific before and after of the event. These are the moments that we look back to be able to understand where we are at in the present. They're the things that almost haunt us in a way. Kennedy does a wonderful job of using words to make the reader hone in on this idea of life being a series of game changing movements. I'm so tempted to put down some of the quotes from the book that speak to this idea but I don't want to give away anything about this book. You just need to read it! If you like passages that are going to be stuck in your head for you to mull over, you are going to love this book.

Bottom line: I know that I need to read more of Kennedy's books!


  1. Oh wow this sounds absolutely heartbreaking! For the travel writer to realize he missed his chance? My heart broke reading the synopsis. Sometimes these heartbreaking books are SO GOOD, though, ya know?

    Also, I'm a sucker for gorgeous prose.

    Thanks for making me aware of this one. I need to throw it on the list.

  2. Wowza this sounds amazing! I know that when you rate something as a 5 it's a definite must-read! This book seems like something I could really get into - I love realistic relationships. Thanks for the great review!

  3. Sounds amazing. I have never read anything set in Berlin in the 1980s so that was interesting to me right away. Reading your review makes me want to go out and buy this one now!

  4. @Kat @ NoPageLeftBehind This is also one of the first books that I can remember reading that covers the 1980s in Germany!


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