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Stiff Kiss

Stiff Kiss

4.5 11
by Avery Olive
Who knew kissing a corpse would change everything?

Death always hits Xylia Morana too close to home, but she likes it that way. She hangs out with the terminally ill, attends random funerals, and every so often, when the weather is right, she sleeps in open graves.

But after Landon Phoenix, the high school hottie, dies in Xylia's hands, she sneaks into the morgue


Who knew kissing a corpse would change everything?

Death always hits Xylia Morana too close to home, but she likes it that way. She hangs out with the terminally ill, attends random funerals, and every so often, when the weather is right, she sleeps in open graves.

But after Landon Phoenix, the high school hottie, dies in Xylia's hands, she sneaks into the morgue to say goodbye. How could she know stealing a kiss from his corpse would wake him up?

With Landon returned to the living and suddenly interested in Xylia, life has new meaning. But what Xylia doesn't realize is that by kissing Landon back to life, she's thrown Life and Death off balance. The underworld demands a body, and it might just have to be Xylia's this time.

Product Details

Crescent Moon Press
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 0.56(d)
Age Range:
13 - 17 Years

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Stiff Kiss 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 11 reviews.
rockygirl1 More than 1 year ago
An adorably cute story! Sure it has a touch of the unrealistic, I mean who kisses a corpse and has them come back to life? But still… Xylia is a bit obsessed with the great beyond. She haunts graveyards and goes to funerals for fun. So kissing the corpse of the guy that she has had a crush on forever doesn’t seem all that weird to her. And when he comes back to life, things just kind of get weirder from there.  Especially when Landon starts to fall in love with her. Landon is not what you expect from the popular kid in school. He is sweet and nice, but has never noticed Xylia until she wakes him from the dead. Avery Olive writes the whole story with a touch of humor and fun that makes it so much fun to read.  From sleeping in an open grave to prowling through the hospitals morgue, you never know what the kids are going to be up to, but chances are they are probably somewhere they shouldn’t be. And, along the way they just might find out that they were meant to be together. I loved reading this one! I found myself laughing at parts and cringing and scratching my head at other parts. But overall it was a heart warming and fun story.  Defiantly one I would recommend others to read.
Tiff2ful More than 1 year ago
This was a very short and sweet read- although it deals with death and coming to terms with it. Xylia is shocked when she kisses Landon and he magically comes back to life. At first, she’s excited because she can ask him what it was like on the other side and then she starts to question how he is alive. Was he given a second chance or did she dabble where she didn’t belong. She knows after what happened she’s not supposed to talk to Landon, but it's harder than she thought. To make matters worse, her dad thinks she needs a shrink..as if. Xylia had enough of everyone and wants to get away, what she doesn’t expect is Landon… Xylia will find out what it’s like to forgive and that the world needs balance. I’m going to start off by saying I’ve been dying to read this book ever since I won some swag from Mrs. Olive last year. I loved the cover and the description and I’m pleased to announce that the book doesn’t disappoint. I loved every minute of it and I wish it had been longer. I was sucked into Xylia’s life and everything that she was dealing with. This book is not just about Xylia kissing Landon back to life. It’s about Xylia cleaning out the skeletons in her closet. Everything just clicked together .Landon. the voices. I loved that Xylia is not your typical MC. She wears black and hangs out in cemeteries for fun, but you can still relate to her. And just as this book is about Xylia, it’s also about Landon. He plans a major role in helping Xylia come to terms with her life. All in All, I really enjoyed this fast paced book and recommend it for people who want to get a chill up their spine. :D Xylia: She likes to attend funerals and like to sleep in cemeteries. She wears all black because she thinks all the light in her life is gone. Since she was 12, she hasn’t been the same and now- years later- she wants answers. That’s all she’s ever wanted. My heart broke for her on several occasions and I think she was a very unique character. Landon: When we first meet him he is just a guy that wants to get a full ride so he can get into college. After he dies, he changes. What does he really want to do with his life now that he’s gotten a second chance? Maybe he needs to break a few rules and take some risks. Good thing he’s got Xylia to help him out. ;) There is only one part where I didn’t like him, and it kinda threw me. It was at the end and it kinda made me question Xylia and Landon’s relationship……other than that, he was alright. 4 STARS!!!!!!!! Quote: "I grab a book for halftime, since reading is way more exciting than looking at cheerleaders, and head downstairs."
WorldsCollide More than 1 year ago
Fun, romantic, and with a touch of paranormal. A Stiff Kiss was a lovely read. Quirky and sweet, this is a great book to read when you just want something to make you smile. I loved the lightness to this book. Though it dealt with issues of death, the dark topic didn't bog down the book. It remained a lighthearted read on a serious theme, which I thought was a great accomplishment. There were serious moments, as Xylia dealt with the death of her mother and the fear of losing Landon. But, for the most part, this was a fun read. Xylia was an interesting character. She definitely isn't your average teenage girl. She is fascinated with death, likes to crash funerals, and sneaks out of the house to sleep in open graves. A little strange, yes? I thought that those quirks made her a unique character that was truly interesting and engaging. I wish there was more explanation as to why she liked death so much. There was the a little bit of an explanation, but I thought that the extent of her fascination wasn't covered by it. I would be very alarmed if someone I knew slept in open graves. And a little creeped out. And I thought she needed to give her father a little more credit for having patience with her death obsession. I think most parents would immediately cart their children to a psychiatrist if they did half of what Xylia liked to do and the fact that her father didn't made him unusually understanding. However, despite any complaints I had about her, they were too minor to inhibit my enjoyment of the book. I still really liked her character and really enjoyed reading about her, quirks and all. Landon was a sweetie. I thought he was utterly adorable.  When he fell, he fell hard and he was completely devoted to Xylia. He was just perfect. The romance was sweet off the charts. Xylia and Landon were adorable together. They might have been an unusual couple (the goth girl and the jock), but they were perfect together. And Landon's sweetness definitely led to some swoon worthy moments. The plot moved quickly and I was hooked the entire way through. The constant worry of Landon's continued survival had me anxious to find out how it worked out. I was able to guess part of the outcome, but it still took me by surprise how it all worked out. Full circle. And I'll let you read it to find out what that means :) A Stiff Kiss was a wonderful YA romance with a sprinkle of paranormal fun. I absolutely loved this book! If you want a great YA read that will have you smiling, then you definitely have to read this. *I received a free copy in exchange for an honest review
Alyssa75 More than 1 year ago
***Review posted at The Eater of Books! blog*** A Stiff Kiss by Avery Olive Publisher: Crescent Moon Press Publication Date: February 12, 2012 Rating: 4 stars Source: Won a copy from the author (old review - originally posted on September 26, 2012) This book really stuck with me after I finished it. I won an e-copy and print copy of this book from Ms. Olive, and read it through in one sitting. Ms. Olive floored me with her interesting and strange story of life and death. Summary (from Goodreads):  Who knew kissing a corpse would change everything? Death always hits Xylia Morana too close to home, but she likes it that way. She hangs out with the terminally ill, attends random funerals, and every so often, when the weather is right, she sleeps in open graves. But after Landon Phoenix, the high school hottie, dies in Xylia's hands, she sneaks into the morgue to say goodbye. How could she know stealing a kiss from his corpse would wake him up? With Landon returned to the living and suddenly interested in Xylia, life has new meaning. But what Xylia doesn't realize is that by kissing Landon back to life, she's thrown Life and Death off balance. The underworld demands a body, and it might just have to be Xylia's this time. What I Liked:  To me, this book was interesting, to say the least. I was first fascinated by the names of the characters. Xylia is a name I've heard of, in books or otherwise. I also really like the name Landon Phoenix. Phoenixes are one of my favorite mythical creatures.  I liked the character building in this book. As readers, we really get to see the growth of character in both Xylia and Landon. From Xylia we see and understand her passion for death and funerals and graves. We see her gradual change in behavior towards her father. I love the ending, and how she fought for something (no spoilers!).  Landon is an awesome guy! He doesn't strike me as the typical young adult hot boy that every young adult book girl wants. I loved his reactions to Xylia's strange habits. I felt what he felt, especially when it came to the open grave! I like him, because despite his confusion about death and Xylia's oddities, he stuck with her up until the end.  Oh, the end. I like how everything came full circle. It was a fitting end. I like this book as a standalone. A series wouldn't really fit, although, I never know what authors can come up with! What I Did Not Like:  Well, I like Xylia because she's not the cool, loved, popular girl in high school. I like Landon for sticking with her despite her weirdness. But the weirdness, that was something I could not wrap my head around. Someone who likes to sleep in open graves?! Ms. Olive didn't expound upon it, but I'm pretty sure that's a psychological problem. That is so strange. Of course, people do crazier things. But that is really, really weird.  I didn't like how Xylia left her father, and put him through what she did. That was teenage selfishness (which I can see, because I am a teenager), and that makes it understandable. There wasn't much else that I didn't like. Get passed the weirdness of Xylia's habits, and it's an awesome read! Would I Recommend It:  Yes! It's a great standalone. I think Ms. Olive has a great feel for writing and knows how to create a genuinely interesting story. Since it is set around high school students, I would recommend this book to any teenager and up. Rating:  4 stars. Great job, Ms. Olive! I can't wait to see what else you've got! 
ShannonEckrich More than 1 year ago
When I choose a book, the book must capture my interest within the first few paragraphs or I'll toss it aside. Seriously, I'm not kidding. And A Stiff Kiss did more than capture my attention within the first few paragraphs, it grabbed me from the first sentence. "When I was twelve, I found my mother dead on Christmas Day." I mean, how can you not continue to read a novel with a first line like that? It's awesome, brilliant, and it leaves you with so many unanswered questions. Ms. Olive did such a wonderful job creating such a terrific cast of characters set in a very believable world. Xylia Morana has been obsessed with death ever since she found her mother dead on Christmas Day. While other kids her age engage in sports, party way too much, and flock to the mall every weekend, Xylia spends her spare time in the morgue, at cemeteries, and attending funerals for people she never knew. Although I don't spend my time in any of these places, I had a very strong connection to Xylia. I could feel her pain and imagine the emotions she must be going through. Not only did she lose her mother, but she was the first to discover her dead body. And at twelve years old, that's really devastating for a child, which is why she chooses to close herself off to the world. That is until she kisses the corpse of the guy she has always had the hots for. Landon Phoenix is popular, the star of the soccer team, and way out of Xylia's league. But when he collapses on the soccer field, pronounced dead, and taken to the hospital morgue, Xylia decides to give him one last kiss goodbye. A kiss that will breathe life back into Landon. When Landon wakes up, he is drawn to Xylia, even though she attempts to avoid him in every possible way. But when she decides to take the road trip she's been wanting to go on, she finds herself traveling with Landon. And not by choice. During their trip, Landon and Xylia connect and, not only do they begin to open up to one another, but they end up falling in love. But Landon has a problem. He cheated death, and now death wants him back or someone to take his place. That someone is Xylia. If you're looking for an awesome read, A Stiff Kiss is a must!
ReviewerMar More than 1 year ago
A Stiff Kiss was so much better than I expected it to be! The book looked not extremely interesting to me at first, but once I opened it and started reading I just fell in love with the whole concept, the characters and the oh-so-addictive story. Xylia is a goth girl, always dressed in black. She loves to hang out on graveyards, is always close to death. But she also has her girly side. She is in love with Landon, the most popular boy in school. Whe he dies while playing a soccer game, she kind of loses it. As close as she always is to the dead, she is to his dead body. She goes to the morgue and kisses Landon's dead body on the lips. And that's when the ultimate drama sets in. Landon wakes up from death, and the balance between Life and Death is messed up. It might sound like a cliché that Xylia -the outcast- is in love with Landon -the hottest guy in her school- but their story is anything but cliché. Landon does partly remember what happened, and he knows that he owes his 'second life' to Xylia, but doesn't understand it, neither does anyone. It is a whole mystery; how is it possible to wake up from death. As the story develops, my emotions took over. It was just so cute and cruel at the same time. Just as Landon and Xylia started to really get to know each other, they found out one of them was going to be taken by the Underworld, that demanded a body to maintain the balance between Life and Death. The story was so bittersweet it made me cry at multiple points, and that is quite unique, as I usually don't cry a lot while reading. This book's writing style fitted the story perfectly. It is so much better to read romantic parts from 2 points of view, it gives you way moer insight into everything, and makes you feel as is you are standing right there in the middle of the story, next to Landon and Xylia. Concluding, A Stiff Kiss is a YA novel that should get way more attention, as I believe every lover of PNR will love this novel. The characters were amazing, the story was super interesting and my emotions took over multiple times while reading. I give this novel 4.5 stars!
Lusee More than 1 year ago
I wasn't sure if I'd like A STIFF KISS. I wasn't sure how I'd like thinking about someone kissing a dead person good-bye, but in fact, I loved the story and enjoyed reading the novel. Though I have to admit, I'm still thinking about that kiss. After her mother's death on Christmas day, Xylia becomes fascinated by death. (Olive describes Xylia's reactions extremely well.) Not that her father approves, but what are you going to do with a teenager whose compulsion outweighs her common sense? So, she cruises cemetaries, morgues, and works near the dead. She's 'dark' and rebels against everything and everyone. Yet, Xylia is a deep thinker and hard to reach. Her father, whom I thought was portrayed very well, tries with patient futility to turn her around. Enter Landon, a jock who excells at soccer. Xylia has a teenage crush--sometimes going to extremes to get his attention. When he dies it is Xylia's kiss that brings him back to life. Hence--A STIFF KISS. *shudder* Together they set out on a cross-country trip where they are 'shadowed' by a threatening entity. The story is different, but I think this would appeal to young adult readers. Written in both Landon's and Xylia's perspective you get the chance to see into both characters. The writing flows as does Olive's talent in creating a world where the out of the norm becomes normal. The ending is satisfying and I look forward to seeing more of Ms. Olive's work.
karyrader More than 1 year ago
This was fun fast read. The characters were well formed and loveable. Xylia's plight to find closure was believable as well as emotional. Landon was swoon-worthy. It's a great story.
Vanilla_Orchids More than 1 year ago
A Sweet Romance with a Morbid Twist! Rating 4.5 Xylia Morana has had a crush on Landon Phoenix for awhile now, but he doesn't really even know who she is. During a championship soccer game with which Landon was playing in, in the hopes of attracting the attention of scouts, Landon collapses. Dr. Morana, Xylia's father, is called to the field, and he asks Xylia to help him administer CPR. Despite all their efforts, Landon is pronounced dead on the way to the hospital. Having wished that she'd spoken to Landon when he was alive, Xylia decides to visit him in the morgue so that she can say goodbye. When she places a single kiss on his lips, he awakens ... some 2 1/2 hours after he died. Dr. Morana tells Xylia not to speak about what happened because it could look bad for the hospital as well as himself. And Landon has been having dreams, since reawakening, of a girl with black hair and green eyes that are haunting him, and he doesn't realize that it's Xylia at first even though he now feels drawn to her. He knows that she knows something about what happened to him, but she's not talking. This book was very different from the romances that I'm used to reading. You might think that since Xylia secretly had a crush on Landon and was, in a way, given a second chance to make her feelings for him known, she'd take it, but she doesn't. She tries so very hard to push him away even if that means being rude to him. So it takes a great deal of work on both their parts to finally let their feelings be known. I found myself glued to the book, worrying whether or not they will ever be allowed to be together since there are those who are still after Landon's life to help put the world back in balance. Not to mention, Xylia herself keeps pushing Landon away when all she really wanted to do was pull him close. I couldn't help finding myself irritated by the way that Xylia kept defying her father. He's all she has left, since the death of her mother when she was twelve, and she's all he has left. He worries about her. I understand that she had her reasons and that it could just be considered teenage rebellion, but I felt bad for Dr. Morana. They have such a close relationship, and Xylia hates to hurt her father, but that's exactly what she does to him by defying him. I did come to understand why she did it though. Despite that I thought the story was great! I love when a book can make me feel even if that means it makes me laugh, cry, worry, or even become irritated with a character. A Stiff Kiss did that. I can definitely see myself reading this book again, and I'm certainly curious as to what other stories Avery Olive comes up with in the future! ** I received a copy of A Stiff Kiss for review as part of the Knights of the Round Table group on Goodreads.**
authorcindyyt More than 1 year ago
I don't read a lot of YA books these days, but I enjoyed A Stiff Kiss. Characters are what make or break a book for me, and I loved the ones Ms. Olive has created. Even the secondary characters were interesting, but Xylia and Landon were great, complicated characters who don't conform to stereotypes. The reader is immediately drawn into their world and their problems and they take you on an interesting and sometimes morbid ride. How do you tell someone your kiss brought them back to life? It's a neat premise. I was hoping for a touch more of the paranormal element, but Ms. Olive's smooth writing pulled me along through the story and I literally couldn't put it down. An excellent debut novel!
myhiddenbookshelf More than 1 year ago
Avery Olive contacted and asked me if I would be interested in hosting a day of her blog tour and since it was my first opportunity to do so, I couldn’t say no. And I am so glad she did, for if she didn’t I probably would have missed this book completely and that would have been a shame! Avery blew me away with A Stiff Kiss as I discovered it was chillingly morbid, gravely disturbing, and impulsively rebellious. This gripping novel had an amazing cast of exceptionally bizarre and immersing characters that will keep you entertained throughout the entire story and still keep you begging for more! The setting Olive created was very dreary, realistic, and modern. It wasn’t much different then what you would see today but with a plot twist she turned it into a world with a second chance at life, full of choices and reliving a certain moment could change everything! The characters in this odd but compelling tale really made the story what it was. Xylia was truly one of a kind; obsessed with death almost seems an understatement describing her. With losing her mother at a very young age and her being the one to find her that way, it definitely scarred her. As she has had years to deal with her traumatic loss, she takes the long road to overcoming her grief. In that process she becomes very curious about the process of dying and death in general. I found Xylia to be morbid, peculiar, and grotesque; but still she was still vigorous, caring, and stubborn. She was a really rare character that I believe people can relate to. Then there’s the boy that she brings back to life, Landon. Landon was the typical jock, who might not have ever noticed Xylia until her magical kiss bought him back from the dead. He turned out to be this astonishingly thoughtful, sensitive, and considerate boy that helped Xylia in more ways than she realized that she needed. I felt that this strange and engaging novel earned itself five stars, as it held an intriguing look at death and the afterlife that I think many people could relate to. To all readers out there this one was very imaginative and a very quick read, it will really make you ask yourself if you relive a moment of your life how would you use your second chance?