I would probably not listen to it again because I have so many audiobooks, I seldom have time to re-read them, but, assuming I had the time, I would probably enjoy reading it again. I think the reader-critics are too harsh. I don't know what they are looking for. This was not going to be 50 Shades. It's a noble effort to answer a "what if" question and then make an pretty good effort to answer it in a romantic way. (This is not a fairy tale story. Women are giving up finding a decent man amount the poorly-raised losers out there and are opting for in vitro fertilization-it's a big industry. These women are quality women as Emma is. So, the "this would just never happen criticism, I think, is way off the mark.) In any case, Aiden was a womanizer, but he was a catch if he could get beyond this adolescent habit as most men eventually do. He was raised well, had great parents and siblings, a good education, is very intelligent and capable and makes a very good living. It is not difficult to understand Katie presenting a history of women beating a path to his door. None have been successful in cracking the Aiden code, although we do find out later that may not have been entirely true. But, a strong enough woman could probably do it and may yet. It'll have to wait for book which is on my wish list but I have not yet read. Any way, Emma is intelligent, powerful, creative and has always had the upper hand in the relationship, especially if she wanted to come in with the heavy weapons, but she undoes Aiden by using the gifts the Lord gave her - her feminine beauty, her feminine charm, her feminine intelligence, her feminine patience, her generous sensuality, her gentleness and the knowledge that those things can and have moved mountains. By the end of the first book, using these simple tools, Aiden's womanizing has crashed into a wall, figuratively speaking of course, and he is a mess and his options to regaining his footing are pretty narrowed down to one thing - start being a real man and not a child. Emma always saw this potential in him and it remains to be seen whether Aiden is going to catch on before he self destructs. He doesn't have many who support him right now, but what it will come down to is his dealing with his phobia that a relationship with Emma, or any woman, as a monogamous, devoted husband and an unconditionally supportive father to a child who would love him in return and benefit greatly from his/her father's presence, as all children do. These issues transcend the narrow case study in this story. But, I found the story romantic, Aiden was a wonderful lover to Emma and Emma clearly appreciated his attention and reciprocated. As a love story, I thought it was wonderfully done without any whips, chains, bars or specially painted rooms. Early on, Emma realized Aiden was a really good guy with a claustrophobic, womanizing habit, but Emma got him to promise to drop that pretty early on and it appeared he wanted to. That was over for Aiden at the point, but he just didn't know it. I love powerful women stories. Having three daughters, two of whom have chosen careers in which males have been the dominating influence. But, like Emma, they are not being men or males, but rather are being women and using their incredible feminine power to push away the roadblocks. Two are having solid, honest, romantic relationships with the men in their lives. This story is a good story for young woman who may not even be contemplating artificial insemination, but are looking for the motivation that comes from reading about powerful women taking care of business. .
There were several good ones. Of course, the first intimate encounter between Emma and Aiden was very well done. Beau changing allegiances was really powerful. The new office vamp who pursues Aiden at the end, particularly her reaction to Aiden when she realized what a disgraceful person Aiden was being. I liked the polite exchange between the vamp and Emma which showed what strength of character Emma had.
Contrary to some of the criticism, I thought her segue from female voice to mail voice and keeping them absolutely consistent and believable was remarkable. Ms. O'Keef is one of the good readers. Some of the men were too much alike, but that was alright. Oddly, for me, I did not think she did Aiden well, or as well as she might have. Katie wrote Aiden as a likable, gentle, caring, considerate person, but many times his line was not delivered in that character. There were many times when I didn't like Aiden just because of the intonation in Ms. O'Keef's delivery. After a while, I got used to it and was able to retranslate the line in my head more in accordance with what I would have expected of him. Opinions may differ on this. I'm an old timer. Maybe men talk to women harshly like that these days. I certainly hope not.
I may not be the standard here. I tear up (damp eyes) when the price of fruit goes down. My emotional reaction to the book was not strong until nearly the very end when Aiden has just crashed his life into a stone wall and the question was from whom he was going to ask for help - of the few who might want to him help. He called the person who was likely to be the very hardest on him but, perhaps, the most likely to help him. This suggested to me, that Aiden realized he needed and wanted Emma back and that was not going to be easy. But we all knew Emma by then. She is sweet and forgiving and if Aiden could actually overcome his phobia and become a real man for the greater good of everybody, she just might take him back. With a beautiful wife and child, Aiden might find a contentment that the rest of we fathers feel with our lovely wives and children. But, to answer the question directly, I felt quite emotional toward the end of the story as I believe most would. The charity of unlikely dogs and people running to Emma's side from Beau to Becky and more no doubt to come. Aiden on the other hand has fallen into the depths of despair, he, acknowledges a stark realization about how a life mishandled can come back and bite you and then touchingly reaches out for help. Alll that was very well done and I liked it.
Let's get "The Pairing" the Companion Novel to "The Proposition" on audiobooks.
So what happened?
These characters are not for everybody, but they were for me. I fell in love with Annie and so badly wanted her to find a lover. I've known Tuckers and they are like dynamite. Recovering alcoholics can go either way and they usually do. My irony. If you are the nurturing type, then once you connect with a characters or several of them, what you want most is to know they ended up okay. I truly believed this lovely story was headed that way. It had everything. For romantics like me, the slowly, awkwardly-developing love story was just what I look for and enjoy. And, I enjoyed it very much.
Annie was my favorite. I loved Annie. Annie had paid her dues and was long overdue for her rewards. She suffered 15 years of the insufferable Malcom, was out of the relationship, opportunity presented itself and, well, we don't know what happened. I am not tolerant of books that start slowly. There is no excuse for it usually. You can hook the reader on the first page. I was an hour into this book, maybe more, and was ready to put it down for good. Then it got good and I listened to it practically straight through. I am not tolerant of books that end badly either. I am not talking about a disaster. I am talking about something akin to watching a movie when you were a child and with 15 minutes to go, your mom sends you upstairs because, well just because. It's late, or something. So, now my mom doesn't send me to bed, I want to know and feel I have the right to how it ends. Anyone who can get the significance of the Blog comments at the end perhaps knows somthing I don't. I didn't get it. So, it is a very good story, nicely told and narrated that starts painfully slowly and then finishes before the end. It's regretable. I am not anything like a novelist, but I feel could have satisfactorily ended the story better in one of about ten different ways, Annie is single and loves Tucker. Tucker is single and loves Annie. Anybody have any ideas here?
I loved Annie and would go to dinner with her. If I had a choice, I'd like to go to dinner with Tucker. I imagine most people would.
In the previous comments, the book can be summarized: a great story, great character development, but starts hopelessly slowly and ends about one to two chapters too soon.
The image of the Wright Brothers that is handed down to us is a cartoon. Kelly gives us the real story and it is stunning. What appears clear is that aerodynamics in those day, to scientists and inventors alike, was about as mysterious as anything you might imagine today. More people understand general relativity today than understood aerodynamics and aeronautics then. The smartest people around the world simply couldn't figure it out. Many were left to conclude after experimentation that is wasn't possible. It took two brilliant, meticulous scientists with a gift for observation, a sixth sense about physics, especially aerodynamic principles, photographic memories, a talent for design and engineering, mechanical skills and a relentless willingness to experiment, about ten years to develop the first practical airplane. When scientists finally figured out what the Wrights had done, they generally agreed that if the Wrights hadn't done it, it might have been decades before anybody else would have. Nobody was even close. This wonderful and passionate account written in 1944 presents an amazing story of two extraordinary individuals.
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