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Lip Service: A Novel Hardcover – 26 Oct 1999

4.2 out of 5 stars 30 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; First Edition edition (26 Oct. 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0671041312
  • ISBN-13: 978-0671041311
  • Product Dimensions: 22.3 x 14.7 x 3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (30 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,591,472 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"The Midwest Book Review" "Lip Service" is both seductive and sinister.

Book Description

This seductive debut novel crackles with eroticism and suspense. Exploring the relationship between sexuality and identity, it provides an astonishingly vivid glimpse into one woman's inner life. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
M J Rose has, without a doubt, created a new genre of fiction. No wonder that traditional publishers 'didn't know where to put Lip Service'. This is an intelligent, fascinating book with serious erotica at just the right places in the plot, for just the right length and never 'just to take up space'. Deliciously naughty, tantilizing novel about Julia discovering a very real and honest side of herself that was never released (until...?), a smug psychiatrist husband needing one himself, 'The Institute' and a real page turner of a plot. Buy it and find out more. This novel will make for a much appreciated gift as well. An exciting read, I highly recommend this for readers of both genders. I await with anticipation 'In Fidelity'.
Patricia Conant - Freelance writer, columnist...
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Format: Paperback
Julia Stirling has been content in her life until recently. Married to Paul, a psychiatrist turned professional fund-raiser, she has willingly assisted him in his efforts to promote his charity for Fathers In Trouble as a charming, if shy hostess. As a student Julia had a nervous break-down after a period during which she indulged in various and short-lived sexual encounters. Marrying the cool and emotionally detached Paul and allowing him to make her decisions for her while keeping her on medication has for a long time been her refuge from that past. Recently though she has started to question her detachment from life. After obtaining a degree in journalism she has been writing articles on a free-lance and part-time basis and this return to self-sufficiency is awakening other needs in her. Needs her husband won't acknowledge or tolerate. When Julia meets Sam Butterfield during a charity dinner she is fascinated by what he tells her about his work at a renowned sexual research centre. When he invites her to write a book about the work the institute does with the aid of telephone-therapists Julia jumps at the opportunity and asks to be trained as such a therapist as a form of research. She is slightly taken aback when she discovers that the therapy provided is in reality a form of phone sex but, once her initial shock wears of, she discovers that she is enjoying the way those phone conversations with sometimes desperate men make her feel. When one of her clients confesses to harming his step-daughter and needing her help in order to stop Julia is confused and conflicted. And because she has been keeping her research a secret from Paul, who doesn't want her involved with the Butterfield institute at all, she is facing her confused feelings alone.Read more ›
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Format: Hardcover
I read this book in one absorbed sitting. Congratulations to M.J. Ross for having the balls to publish and promote her own book. I hope she and her agent are having the last laugh at the publishing world that wouldn't accept her manuscript in the first place.
The book is a fascinating compilation of genres -- literary, erotic, suspense, thriller, and social commentary -- with a twist at the end that caught me completely off guard. Great ending. Great reading.
The description of various upper class social worlds and concerns, I thought, were very wry and very dead on. In my best Hollywood pitch, LIP SERVICE was like: "Belle Du Jour" meets Evelyn Waugh meets Hitchcock meets Susie Bright at Good Vibrations (a woman's sex shop in San Francisco). Congratulations to M.J. Ross for having the courage to tell an intelligent story with compelling contemporary characters and not hold back on the sexual content.
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Format: Hardcover
Looking for an intelligent, modern-day love story with some steamy, summer sizzle? If the answer is yes, M.J. Rose's "Lip Service" could be the book for you.
Using modern-day New York as her backdrop, Rose invites us into the life of devoted wife and dutiful daughter Julia Sterling, and her sterile and controlling psychiatrist husband, Paul. The story begins as Julia, acting the part of trophy-wife for her husband's business dinner, meets Sam Butterfield, founder of the Butterfield Institute, a "progressive sex clinic."
Encouraged by Sam, but against the wishes of her overprotective husband, Julia agrees to write a book about the institute. Through her research, she struggles with the emotionally fragile label that has been thrust upon her by her father and husband, and the new awakening she experiences through her job as a phone sex therapist.
With plenty of suspense and intrigue, Rose entices us into Julia's psyche. As the story progresses, we realize just how much Julia has put her life on hold; not allowing herself to question what her husband tells her, nor allowing her true feelings to surface. But it is not until Julia is faced with making significant decisions about her future, that we really realize the significance of her newly found self-awareness.
Definitely a page-turner, this book is the perfect cure for the mid-summer blahs. With just enough erotica to be piquant, but not enough to be pornographic, "Lip Service" is one of those books that you'll be sure to pass on to your best friend.
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By Roman Clodia TOP 500 REVIEWER on 22 Aug. 2012
Format: Paperback
Julia's marriage to Paul, a psychiatrist, is passionless and more or less sexless. So when she meets charismatic Sam who runs a sex clinic, Julia can't help being intrigued. Drawn into Sam's slightly sinister world of therapeutic phone sex Julia finds it all too easy to become `Alice' - but will her enthrallment to her own repressed desires lead to her liberation or something quite different?

This is an odd mix of the intelligent, the hippy-new age, and the frankly rather schlocky. Parts of it are done well and there is a genuine tension as to whether Julia's involvement in Sam's sexual therapy is empowering or a closet form of prostitution masquerading under a respectable name. The latter part of the book, however, seems to lose all sense of direction as the plot goes off the rails into the unbelievable and rather absurd.

So a mixed recommendation from me: it's worth a read for the good bits but sadly doesn't follow through.

(This review is from an ARC courtesy of the publisher).
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