"The Witness by Nora Roberts"
This is the second Nora Roberts book I've listened to and I found the character development and emotional interplay between the main characters interesting and believable. Julia Whelan is a good narrator and is very good at bringing the personalities of the different people alive - it was very easy to distinguish who was 'in play' at any one time by how she read their words. Having been brought up on Hollywood blockbusters I suppose I was expecting a more climatic end to the thriller side of the plot but the fact that I cared about the characters and wanted the best for them means, for me, that I found a book engaging despite any possible flaws. I would characterise her books as slightly Mills and Boonish in that the romance is the central point but the sub-plots are so well developed that this is only a passing criticism. Having listened to two of her books, one read by a female and one by a male, I would always choose a female voice for her books - it just seems to fit better for me as a female listener.
"Undemanding listen that holds the interest"
I like MS Robert's books, especially the later ones, and this is just fine. What I like is that the love story is given time to develop, and does so over eating in, or helping with the weeding, or going to a family BBQ! It isn't wham bang lust at first sight, let's get married in a week, or one of those relationships that flare up in high stress, life and death situations, that you just know won't survive normal life.
There are two sections. The first is longer than might be expected, given that it is essentially the set up for the "main" story. You learn the back story of our young heroine Elizabeth, and about the incident that catastrophically changes her (sixteen year-old) life, and moulds her into the adult you then meet in the second section. Part two is classic Nora Roberts - a sweet love story sharpened by the tartness of the heroine, now called Abigail, whose life of total control is gently derailed by a very persistent man, ably assisted by his mother! There's a fine guard dog, some cooking and gardening, some local nastiness from a local bully, and, of course, resolution of the issues that have controlled Abigail's life since she was 16..
I read this first, decided I liked it enough to buy the audio version, and I've listened to the audio version twice!
This is well read, although there are the usual American vs British English pronounciation glitches - my pet hates are 'erbs for H'erbs, and r'ow'ta instead of rooter (for the written word router, in case you're wondering what I"m on about!). There are more, but not so many they get in the way of enjoying the book.
Worth the pennies, and worth the listen, or read.
"an excellent read"
I have never read any Nora Roberts before and was absolutely in love with this book. Brilliant!
"Well crafted story and captivating narration"
Nora Roberts beautifully creates Abigail Lowery and Brooks.
The story is simple but you fall in love with some characters as much as you hate others.
There are moments of laugh out wittiness.
Really enjoyed the narration as well, convincing and enjoyable to listen to.
All round good one to listen on long journeys!
Well read, well written - I really enjoyed this book. I usually go for crime novels
and was not quite sure about this, but I'm glad I changed my mind and I will probably
look into Norah Roberts other books.
"lovely easy listen"
I really enjoyed this book! The narration was really nice and I loved the maon characters.
"Edge of the seat story"
Wow - I really enjoyed this book. The action was electrifying - you really were gripping the edge of the seat - but the slower bits, with beautiful attention to character development, just made the whole book come alive. I didn't want it to end and yet I had to know what happened next. I found myself driving slower and slower so I could listen to more before I got home and then sat in the drive! Highly recommended.
Not outstanding but enjoyable. If you are looking for a filler romance this is it.
"A new way to enjoy audiobooks!"
I usually find Nora Roberts' novels to be a little formulaic - heroine runs away to new town, has hate -love relationship with hero and they all live happily ever after etc. I was fascinated to find that The Witness was different. That was until I realised that I had only listened to Part 2! Nevertheless, I then listened to Part 1 which added an unusual twist - already knowing what was going to happen in the future! However, I really enjoyed the whole thing and I am sure it would have been as good had I listened in the right order. It was, undoubtedly, one of her better works. Gritty, gripping and not predictable. The central characters were easy to warm to and thus care about what happened to them. I also have to commend the narrator whose ability to differentiate the characters and narrate in a listenable voice, added to the enjoyment of the experience. Here's hoping that Ms Roberts has more books like The Witness in her upcoming repertoire.
"Easy holiday read!"
Before I start slating the book, I have to say that the narrator was excellent. Really enjoyed her reading despite the heavy American accent.
I needed something light and not very challenging for my holiday and a romantic thriller seemed perfect. The only problem was that it was neither thrilling nor all that romantic. The first time our girl hero gazed into the deep blue eyes of her chosen one, did produce an, "Aah how romantic" effect but the next twenty gazes made me wonder if she had a secret degree in optometry on top of her many other talents.
The plot was quite simplistic and predictable. There was a subplot which ran alongside the main one but the two never came together. I was expecting them to be connected somehow which would have created at least some intrigue. Instead of mindlessly enjoying the book, I found myself thinking of how the plot could have been made more exciting. I felt the book dragged on and the fact that the main character recounted the same story three times to anyone willing to listen, did not help matters.
I was considering giving the author another chance but decided that life is too short and there are plenty of other fish in the Audible sea.