The Scent of Your Breath

Melissa P (Author) Shaun Whiteside (Translator)


Melissa P.'s fictionalized memoir, 100 Strokes of the Brush Before Bed, became an international literary phenomenon, selling over two million copies worldwide and inspiring profiles in Vanity Fair and The New York Times, as well as a warning from the pope. The Scent of Your Breath, the second installment in her series of confessions, is a smoldering tale of obsessive love and destructive passion.

Melissa, desperate for love and willing to do anything to find it, is now a successful writer in Rome, living with her new lover, Thomas. But as soon as she meets Viola, a woman from Thomas's past, sexual passion and insecurity mount in tandem, and Melissa is consumed with jealousy. Written as a confessional letter to her mother, the story that follows is one of dark obsession, violent lust, and soul-destroying talent. Driven by Melissa's singular voice -- that unique and compelling combination of impetuous naivete and poetic sophistication that has mesmerized readers in thirty-one countries -- The Scent of Your Breath blurs the boundaries between reality and fantasy and delves deep into the disturbing yet strangely familiar mind of a teenage girl terrorized by love.

Product Details

$12.00  $11.04
Grove Press, Black Cat
Publish Date
July 17, 2006
5.1 X 0.42 X 7.3 inches | 0.3 pounds
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About the Author

Born in Catania, Melissa P. lives in the village of Aci Castello in Sicily. She is now eighteen years old, and about to leave high school. Los Cien Golpes is her first novel.

Shaun Whiteside is a Northern Irish translator of French, Dutch, German, and Italian literature. He has translated many novels, including Manituana and Altai by Wu Ming, The Weekend by Bernhard Schlink, and Magdalene the Sinner by Lilian Faschinger, which won him the Schlegel-Tieck Prize for German Translation in 1997.


"What's most remarkable about this staggeringly assured debut is not the sexual smorgasbord--voyeurism, sadomasochism, group sex, etc., etc.--but the utter lack of any distractions from sex. ... A junior-league Catherine M. bound to raise just as many eyebrows this side of the Atlantic."