Tipping the Velvet

Waters, Sarah, 1966-

(Paperback - 2000)
Average Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5.
Tipping the Velvet
Penguin Putnam
?Erotic and absorbing?Written with starling power.”?The New York Times Book Review

Nan King, an oyster girl, is captivated by the music hall phenomenon Kitty Butler, a male impersonator extraordinaire treading the boards in Canterbury. Through a friend at the box office, Nan manages to visit all her shows and finally meet her heroine. Soon after, she becomes Kitty's dresser and the two head for the bright lights of Leicester Square where they begin a glittering career as music-hall stars in an all-singing and dancing double act. At the same time, behind closed doors, they admit their attraction to each other and their affair begins.

Baker & Taylor
Chronicles the picturesque adventures and romantic misadventures of Nan King, a onetime oyster girl from a provincial seaside town who follows a local music hall star to the gay and lesbian world of late Victorian London. Reprint.

Publisher: New York : Riverhead Books, 2000
Edition: 1st Riverhead trade pbk. ed
ISBN: 1573227889
Branch Call Number: FIC W
Characteristics: 472 p. ; 21 cm.


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Jul 04, 2012
  • Maybea rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

The only other Sarah Waters I've read is Little Stranger, which I thought was amazing. This was only pretty good for me. I skimmed from time to time as it felt a bit clunky and slow. I found the main character to be shallow, thought I'm not sure if that was done on purpose ?

Apr 17, 2011
  • cjperry rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

I agree with ErinHood on this one. "Fingersmith" was one of the most sensual books I had read, and Waters definitely has a way with words, but "Tipping the Velvet" is sort of second-rate in comparison. Good escapist read, and definitely worth the time if you like the style, but don't expect too much.

Feb 12, 2011
  • erinhood rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

It's a sturdy book, told in a pleasing way, but when you read one Sarah Waters book... the subsquent ones give the reader less each time. She rarely explores new emotional ground, rendering her books a bit formulis. While they have different tones, and each an underlying structure of suspense, if you want something with more depth, something that pulls and stretches you to consider humanity and human nature each time, Winterson is your lady.


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Waters, Sarah, 1966-
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