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HeatherY

Member Since 2013

280
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 223 reviews
  • 223 ratings
  • 482 titles in library
  • 45 purchased in 2018
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FOLLOWERS
4

  • The Azure Kingdom: The Iridescent Realm, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 56 mins)
    • By Michelle Dare
    • Narrated By Sarah Puckett
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (21)
    Performance
    (19)
    Story
    (19)

    Alison Wescot inherited the antique store the day her mother died. It was nothing she wanted, but she couldn't part with it. The antiques inside were all she had left of her mother. She thought she knew every piece in the store, until one day she discovered a box with a key inside, along with a letter from her mother. A key to a door she never knew existed.

    James says: "Decent Fantasy"
    "Enjoyable Fantasy Romance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    After Alison's mother passes away, Alison finds an ornate skeleton key and a letter tucked away in an unused dresser. In the letter, her mother explains that she came from a different world, a world that can be accessed through a door with the key. She left that world when she was pregnant with Alison, and her father still lives in that world. But if Alison walks through the door into another realm, she might not ever be able to return.

    Alison has no family left, and the thought that her father might be alive persuades her to use the key. She emerges in a beautiful land carpeted with flowers, a land she recognizes from her recurring dreams. And then she comes face to face with the man that had been starring in those dreams.

    The author created an interesting world with the Azure Kingdom. A medieval kingdom with dragons, castles, dungeons, knights, and feuding kings. But the kingdom also had electricity, plumbing, and modern clothing, it made an interesting contrast. The descriptions of the kingdom and the dragons were vividly done and I could picture everything just as it happened.

    I'd describe this as more of a romance than a fantasy, a lot of the focus is on Alison and Lucas and their instant attraction to each other. For Alison it's insta-lust, and for Lucas it's insta-love. I do prefer my romance to develop naturally, but insta-love can work if the characters are fleshed out enough for me to see why they're attracted to each other. There's some steamy scenes, but it's not overdone.

    The narration was done well, Sarah Puckett's voice fit my image of Alison perfectly. She brought the story to life. I requested a copy of the audiobook, and I'm voluntarily leaving a review.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Edith and the Mysterious Stranger: A Family Saga in Bear Lake, Idaho

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By Linda Weaver Clarke
    • Narrated By Carolyn Kashner
    Overall
    (7)
    Performance
    (7)
    Story
    (7)

    In this inspirational historical romance, Edith is a nurse and has gone home to assist her cousin who is “with child.” Edith has wonderful qualities but never gives a man a second chance because her expectations are so high. However, all that changes when a mysterious stranger starts writing to her. For the first time, she gets to know a man's inner soul before making any harsh judgments. Whoever he is, this man is a mystery and the best thing that has ever happened to her. The question that puzzles her is whether or not he's as wonderful in person as he is in his letters. 

    HeatherY says: "A Sweet Story"
    "A Sweet Story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is book two in the Bear Lake Family Saga and introduces us to Edith, a talented nurse who returns home to Paris Idaho to nurse her cousin Melinda. Edith judges men based on first appearances, which leads her to dismiss most of the men she's introduced to. She faces one matchmaking attempt after another when she returns home, but her new suitors don't interest her. When she receives a letter from a mysterious man, she decides to get to know the writer before judging him.

    This book can be read as a standalone, but is best enjoyed after reading the first. It catches up with Melinda, Gilbert, and Jenny from the first book, and little Jenny is all grown up and ready to meet men of her own! I really enjoyed the banter between the characters, and how the author used music to bring the characters together. She wrote in a simple and straightforward manner, and placed an emphasis on family values.

    The narrator did a great job with the different characters and even singing parts, which brought something special to the story. She has a voice that's easy to listen to. I received a copy of the audiobook, and I'm voluntarily leaving a review.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Injured Sensibilities

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 47 mins)
    • By Ilene Withers
    • Narrated By Eugenie Watson
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (6)
    Performance
    (6)
    Story
    (6)

    Julian Warfeld, Marquess of Knolton, travels to his minor estate when he learns the land steward is a crook. Referred to a nearby farm to see Marty Robinson about his sickly cattle, Julian is shocked to find a beautiful woman dressed in trousers and doing a man's work. Yet he finds himself fascinated with her. Miss Marty Robinson saved her family's estate from bankruptcy by working like a man and gaining a wealth of knowledge about animals. When Lord Knolton asks for her advice, she knows he is shocked to find she is a woman.

    Raissa says: "I love clean reads like this!"
    "A Sweet Romance with a Strong Heroine!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    When Julian, the Marquess of Knowlton, learns that the steward of one of his minor estates is stealing from him and mismanaging the estate, he immediately sets off to make things right. He learns that his animals are starving and his servants aren't receiving their full wages, and he fires the steward on the spot.

    Julian is told to visit a neighbor, Marty Robinson, for advice on his sick cattle. When he arrives, he's surprised to see Marty, a beautiful woman and the daughter of a Baron, in trousers and assisting with a calf's birth. Julian is both shocked by and attracted to Marty, and when the fired steward is discovered dead on Marty's estate, he vows to help discover the killer.

    I really enjoyed this sweet romance! I'm not sure if it was the strong capable heroine, the elderly servants, or the hero who gave up his frivolous life to take care of his estate, but the combo was a winner for me. Both Marty and Julian were adorable together, they had perfect chemistry from the beginning. They just needed to figure out how they fit together.

    I'm usually not a mystery fan, but the 'whodunnit' in this story was interesting and kept the story going. The narration was done well, Eugenie Watson performed voices for the various characters, and read Marty's parts with a smile in her voice that was audible and infectious. I really enjoyed the performance. I requested a copy of the audiobook, and I'm voluntarily leaving a review. It's a clean read I'd recommend for Regency fans.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dream Student: Dreams, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 33 mins)
    • By J. J. DiBenedetto
    • Narrated By Heather Jane Hogan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (57)
    Performance
    (54)
    Story
    (54)

    What would you do if you could see other people's dreams? If you could watch their hidden fantasies and uncover their deepest, darkest secrets without them ever knowing? Sara Barnes is about to find out. She thought that all she had to worry about was final exams, Christmas shopping and deciding whether she likes the cute freshman in the next dorm who's got a crush on her.

    Wanda says: "A fresh spin!"
    "An Interesting Premise"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Sara Barnes is a premed student prepping for finals before the Christmas holiday. She's never been able to remember her dreams until she has a particularly vivid dream involving a freshman in a nearby dorm. This one is different, Sara knows that it isn't her dream and she's an involuntary voyeur to the freshman's fantasy. Then the nightmares begin, and Sara learns that she's sharing her dreams with a monster.

    I really liked the premise of this book, slipping into a person's dream to learn their deepest desires and secrets. It's a really cool idea. I had a hard time classifying the story, it's not quite a thriller, or a mystery, or a romance. I'd describe it as the everyday life of a premed student who happens to have precognitive dreams. The book was written at a slow and steady pace filled with day to day details. The sex scenes were fade to black, there were no real descriptions of violence, and only one or two curse words.

    I thought Sara was a strong lead, despite the debilitating nightmares it's obvious she's usually a steady person. I'd like to see Brian developed further, all I really knew about his personality was that he's timid, clingy, and he's desperately in love with Sara. I'd like to see him grow a bit. I usually like my book relationships to develop naturally through interaction and conversation, I'm not an insta-love fan. Since this wasn't a romance, it wasn't too much of an issue.

    I thought the narrator's voice and style worked well for the story. The narration was a little slow, I bumped it up to 1.5x. I did have to pay close attention to differentiate between Sara's random stream of consciousness thought and what she actually said out loud, because there's no way to discern which is which in the audio. It didn't detract from my enjoyment of the story. I requested a copy of the audiobook, and I'm voluntarily leaving a review.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Martian

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 53 mins)
    • By Andy Weir
    • Narrated By R. C. Bray
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (149361)
    Performance
    (137829)
    Story
    (137694)

    Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars. Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there. After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he's alive - and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive. Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plainold "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.

    Jim "The Impatient" says: "LOOK BOOBIES"
    "It's Not You, Mr. Weir, It's Me"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The Martian is a hard sci-fi novel with lots of crunchy science stuff. Now, I prefer my sci-fi lite, but I love books about survival, colonizing, and anything really character driven.

    The Martian marks the first time I've ever watched the movie version before reading the book. While watching the movie, I was excited to start the book, excited to learn more about the characters. I thought we'd learn their backstories and get to see how their relationships developed. But the book doesn't contain any of that. It just lists technical details on how Mark survived the latest Mars mishap. Don't get me wrong, I was incredibly impressed by the author's knowledge and expertise. But I read books for the characters, and they were flat. Also, since the book is written mostly in log form, and the logs are recorded after the action happens, there's no sense of danger or suspense. We already know that Mark lived through the experience.

    I guess I was just hoping for an emotional and character driven storyline, with amazing descriptions of Mars. Instead I felt like I was listening to hours of word problems, the kind I always used to tune out in the first sentence. I feel terrible even writing this because the author's technical expertise is just awe inspiring. It's not you, Mr. Weir, it's me. I feel like if I was a different kind of person, the kind that reads non-fiction and textbooks for fun, I'd love this book. I know that I'll be watching and re-watching the movie, but I probably won't be re-reading the book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Scandalous Lady Sandford: Lost Ladies of London, Book 3

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 43 mins)
    • By Adele Clee
    • Narrated By Liisa Ivary
    Overall
    (4)
    Performance
    (4)
    Story
    (4)

    Ruined by a lord purely as a means to exact revenge on her brother, Lady Lillian Sandford has given up all hope of ever finding love. The two years spent abroad did nothing to quell the gossips. And with her brother’s notorious reputation, it’s hard to hide in the shadows. Vane is viciously protective and threatens any man who so much as glances her way. Only one man has the nerve to defy him. The one they call The Raven.

    berlinerin says: "Another hit by Ms Clee"
    "Full of Heart and Adventure!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Lady Lillian Sandford will never be accepted by polite London society again. Her reputation is ruined by a lord taking revenge on her brother, Vane, and now she has no chance of marrying or finding love. Witnessing Vane's pain and guilt is tearing Lillian apart inside. Although he tries, Vane can't protect Lillian from everything, and she's kidnapped on a visit to Vauxhall Gardens and taken by ship to a remote island.

    Fabian Darcy, Lord of Ravenscroft, has been living the life of a pirate after his sister's death and the loss of his family estate. Fabian blames Vane for his losses. When Fabian hears that his sister might still be alive, he asks Vane for help finding her. After Vane refuses, Fabian kidnaps Lillian, and to give Vane an extra incentive to help, Fabian asks Lillian to marry him. When he offers marriage, Lillian glimpses freedom for the first time.

    This was a fast paced read with plenty of heart and adventure! It's a mildly steamy read that kept me hooked on each new revelation. I really liked both main characters, Lillian was such a strong and determined heroine, with some major skills. And Fabian never acted domineering or patronizing to Lillian. Of course, Mackenzie was a treat, and I enjoyed the dynamics of the little island.

    The narration was done well, with different voices for the characters. It was a great immersive listen. I requested a copy of the audiobook, and I'm voluntarily leaving a review.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Inn & Out: Three More Wishes, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Elise Sax
    • Narrated By Angie Hickman
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (13)
    Performance
    (13)
    Story
    (13)

    Beryl Meyer is a bum magnet. Her latest bum boyfriend was responsible for sending Beryl to prison for a crime she didn’t commit. Tired of bad relationships and sworn off men, Beryl learns that she’s inherited an old inn on Summer Island. She plans on selling the rundown house in order to start a new life, but when she arrives on the island, she discovers that she’s only inherited half of the inn, and the other half now belongs to an ornery and hot ex-navy SEAL. Thor Stockman wants to run the inn, throwing a wrench into Beryl’s plans.

    Rebecca Azizov says: "it will make you giggle"
    "Cute Listen!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Beryl thinks she's finally hit a streak of good luck when she inherits an inn from an unknown relative. Newly released from prison for a crime she didn't commit, she makes her way to Summer Island to sell the property and live a life of luxury on the proceeds. When she arrives, she learns that she'll be splitting the inheritance with dreamy ex-navy SEAL Thor, and he has no plans to sell the property. They need to work together to restore the inn before Thor can buy her out, but things get complicated as sparks fly.

    This was a standalone novella set on Summer Island. It was a fun listen with plenty of standout characters. While I usually love Sax's quirky heroines with their hilarious inner ramblings, I had a harder time liking Beryl. She came off more annoying than quirky. Luckily Thor more than made up for it, and there were plenty of laugh out loud moments while they're fixing up the inn. I love a good makeover story, whether it's a person or a property, and this one was really cute.

    Angie Hickman was the perfect narrator for this story, as usual, and put me right there in the story. I requested a copy of the audiobook, and I'm voluntarily leaving a review.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Mistress: A Pride and Prejudice Variation, with Parts Not Suitable for Those Who Have Not Reached Their Majority

    • UNABRIDGED (7 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Sophie Turner
    • Narrated By Verona Westbrook
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (23)
    Performance
    (22)
    Story
    (22)

    One night, to decide his entire life's happiness. Chastened by Charles Bingley following Mr. Bennet's untimely death, Fitzwilliam Darcy determines he will offer marriage to Elizabeth Bennet, but she marries another. Years later, a widowed Elizabeth is mistress of Longbourn, and has vowed she will never marry again. A house party at Netherfield brings them back together, but Darcy will have to win more than her heart if he is to have any chance at making her mistress of Pemberley.

    Kindle Customer says: "okay story, bad narrator"
    "I Loved Every Minute Of It!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    In this Pride and Prejudice variation, Mr. Bennet's death on the morning after the Netherfield ball changed everything. With the estate entailed on Mr. Collins and Mr. Bingley away in London, Elizabeth was forced to accept Mr. Collins' proposal. When Darcy learned of the engagement, he wrote to Elizabeth and made her a marriage offer of his own. But Elizabeth married Collins before Darcy could travel to see her, and he knew his pride had caused him to lose the love of his life.

    For two years Mr. Collins made Elizabeth's life a living hell. He managed every aspect of her life, took away everything precious to her, disrespected her, and demeaned her. Their marriage bed was especially traumatic for Elizabeth. When he died Elizabeth could feel nothing but relief and began to manage Longbourn successfully.

    When Mr. Darcy learned of Mr. Collins' death, he felt hope for the first time in years. After he reunited with Elizabeth at a ball thrown at Netherfield, Darcy strove to show her how much he'd changed. But Elizabeth vowed to never marry again, to never place herself in another man's power. Could Darcy convince her that marriage to him would be better than an independent life without him?

    This book was SO amazing! It's lovingly written by an author who showed an obvious love for the original characters. It's a dialogue driven story, a mature tale with steamy scenes. They were necessary to the story and not salacious. I loved every minute of it.

    The story begins a year after Collins' death and Elizabeth's marriage to him is shown in short recollections. Luckily we're not forced to endure that torture with her. Despite that, it's perfectly clear what Elizabeth went through, and her strength and determination will have your heart aching. Darcy was especially wonderful in this variation! If you loved Darcy in the original, this version will spoil you for any other man. He's gentle, patient, respectful, vulnerable, articulate, and very skilled. The characters felt very true to the original.

    The narration was well done, and pulled me into the story. I highly recommend this story of second chances, I know it's going to be a frequent reread. It's a wonderful ending for the couple that deserves all the happiness in the world.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Awaken Online: Catharsis

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Travis Bagwell
    • Narrated By David Stifel
    Overall
    (4551)
    Performance
    (4298)
    Story
    (4291)

    Jason logs into Awaken Online fed-up with reality. He's in desperate need of an escape, and this game is his ticket to finally feeling the type of power and freedom that are so sorely lacking in his real life. Awaken Online is a brand new virtual reality game that just hit the market, promising an unprecedented level of immersion. Yet Jason quickly finds himself pushed down a path he didn't expect. In this game, he isn't the hero. There are no damsels to save. There are no bad guys to vanquish.

    John says: "This is more of a YA novel than reviews indicate"
    "Fantastic LitRPG!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    Awaken Online is set about 60 years in the future, when technology has advanced and virtual reality is possible. On the release date of a brand new VR game, millions sign on to play in this new world. Among them is Jason, a high schooler attending a private school on scholarship. Jason is bullied at school and left alone by his parents for weeks on end. He reaches his breaking point when a classmate attacks him, and Jason is expelled instead of the bully. Jason uses AO to escape his real life, but finds that the game has motivations of its own.

    Now THIS is the kind of character I like to read about! Well-developed and layered, dark and yet strangely likable. Jason is the kind of relatable hero I want to root for, whether he's finally standing up to a bully, terrorizing an army, or murdering NPCs. I'm still right there by his side cheering him on.

    The story kept me hooked and listening whenever I could. I thought it was paced well and full of action. Bagwell really excels in his battle scenes. Epic and masterfully described, you can practically hear weapons clanging and smell blood in the air. He really brings you into the scene with him. I'm interested to see more of the virtual world he created.

    As for the LitRPG aspect of the story, gamers are definitely the target audience. There is a lot of information on character progression, game terms, stat details, and skills. There are frequent repeats of his stats, and a lot of time is spent developing Jason's game character. I loved that part of it, but it may not be everyone's cup of tea. I prefer LitRPGs that switch between the game and real life, because they seem to have more character development. I loved that so much of the story is spent in real life and with the game developers. Again, that may not be everyone's taste. I personally thought it brought a lot of depth to the story.

    The narration style took a little getting used to, as the narrator's voice sounded so much older than Jason's 18 years. But Stifel's seriously talented with his voices, giving Jason the right amount of uncertainty in his speech, lightening his tone for Riley, and performing different accents for the characters. He did a great job with the suspenseful scenes and tension, and I enjoyed the performance. I highly recommend this one, I've already bought the sequels!

    1 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • The Magic of Recluce: Saga of Recluce, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By L. E. Modesitt Jr.
    • Narrated By Kirby Heyborne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1530)
    Performance
    (1392)
    Story
    (1410)

    Young Lerris is dissatisfied with his life and trade, and yearns to find a place in the world better suited to his skills and temperament. But in Recluce a change in circumstances means taking one of two options: permanent exile from Recluce or braving the dangergeld, a complex, rule-laden wanderjahr in the lands beyond Recluce, with the aim of learning how the world works and what his place in it might be. Many do not survive. Lerris chooses the dangergeld.

    Captain Skurvy says: "Epic Fantasy"
    "Wonderful Start to the Series"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is a wonderful start to a series that I've always loved. Modesitt has created a world with a simple magic system based on the balance between order and chaos. It's a traditional coming of age story with a protagonist that initially irritates, but eventually comes into his own.

    There's something so comforting about this book, I reread it every few years. I'm a sucker for details, and this book is full of them. The details of every meal Lerris eats, every person he meets, the craftsmanship of every building he enters, and furniture he sees. The woodworking part is one of my favorites, and I honestly can't explain why. It's like a training montage in a movie that shows a fighter's evolution from stumbling idiot to ninja. It's just so comforting to read.

    The narration is done well, the narrator fits the style and the main character well. I do wish there were less sound effects, they pull me out of the story in a jarring way. I can skim the onomatopoeia in the text version and get the general gist of the scene. A vulcrow is cawing, a staff is singeing skin, Gairloch is whinnying, or a door is creaking in the wind. But in the audio, I really couldn't escape those sounds, and it did grate on the nerves a bit.

    I would 100% recommend this book for fantasy fans. I plan to read it again in a year or so.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Darcy Down the Rabbit Hole: A Knights Templar Adventure: A Mister Darcy Series Comedic Mystery, Book 9

    • UNABRIDGED (5 hrs and 5 mins)
    • By Barbara Silkstone
    • Narrated By Jannie Meisberger
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (11)
    Performance
    (11)
    Story
    (11)

    "Stop!" Darcy called dashing ahead of Lizzie to catch their toddlers, but it was too late. Before he could reach the boys, little Annie had followed them under the ground. Three children and one rather handsome husband all suddenly vanished. Lizzie did the only thing she could think of and threw herself into a full-body slide down the dark, mossy rabbit hole. This is the ninth book in the popular Mister Darcy series of comedic mysteries.

    Kindle Customer says: "Anothr fun Mister Darcy story"
    "Funny and Out of the Ordinary!"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    What started as a simple country picnic turns spooky as Lizzy, Darcy, and their young charges end up underground. A small hole in the ground leads to an underground chamber, which Lizzy and Darcy explore.

    This is the first book in the series I'd read, but I had no trouble keeping up with all the characters. It made me want to go back and start it from the beginning! It's a light read that put a smile on my face. I thought the story was timeless, despite a few mentions of cell phones and limos I could picture Lizzy and Darcy in period clothing exploring the cave. Despite new trappings, the characters were true to the original and very sweet together. Their love for each other was obvious on every page.

    The narration was well done, Jannie Meisberger's narration really added to the enjoyment of the story. She performed different voices for each character and they're always perfect. I requested a copy of the audiobook, and I'm voluntarily leaving a review. I'd recommend this to Pride and Prejudice fans looking for something a little funny and out of the ordinary!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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