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Houston mom

I love witty, fast-paced books that keep you turning the page.

Member Since 2005

ratings
224
REVIEWS
55
FOLLOWING
4
FOLLOWERS
17
HELPFUL VOTES
80

  • The Witness

    • UNABRIDGED (16 hrs and 18 mins)
    • By Nora Roberts
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (7188)
    Performance
    (6262)
    Story
    (6243)

    Daughter of a cold, controlling mother and an anonymous donor, studious, obedient Elizabeth finally let loose one night, drinking too much at a nightclub and allowing a strange man’s seductive Russian accent to lure her to a house on Lake Shore Drive. The events that followed changed her life forever. Twelve years later, the woman now known as Abigail Lowery lives alone on the outskirts of a small town in the Ozarks. A freelance programmer, she works at home designing sophisticated security systems.

    Amazon Customer says: "A great book"
    "Creative and entertaining"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This is now in my top 10 favorite stories from NR. The characters are complex but likable and the story makes you sit in the driveway long after arriving home because you just don't want to hit that stop button. Elizabeth/Liz/Abigail is a great character who is brilliant, but socially stunted due to her controlling mother. I loved how her character didn't just mature magically into a well-adjusted woman, but rather slowly evolved with the support of Brooks. The fast pace of the story coupled with an insightful glimpse into a person who isn't perceived as "normal" by society (much like children with Aspergers), is a wonderfully unique point of view that gives this book its fresh feel. The only ding is that the narrator just ok. She starts out a bit stilted-- enunciating every. word. very. carefully. However as the story unfolds, she does a better job acting out the parts rather than reciting it like a school paper. What is it with the narrators NR's publishers pick? Give me Sandra Burr or even better, Jim Dale!

    0 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Just Good Friends: Escape to New Zealand, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 13 mins)
    • By Rosalind James
    • Narrated By Claire Bocking
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (72)
    Performance
    (68)
    Story
    (69)

    Kate Lamonica isn't Koti James' type. Too small. Too dark. And heaps too much work. So it's an easy bet that he can be her friend for six weeks without making a move on her, no matter what his mates would have said. Kate can't believe she's made the bet at all. New Zealand had seemed like the perfect escape from the stalker who'd threatened first her peace of mind and then her life. She certainly doesn't need any more trouble. Why on earth has she agreed to spend time with a Maori rugby player who's far too handsome and charming for his own good - and knows it?

    Lolli says: "Hot rugby player in NZ: yes please!"
    "Great story with a wonderfully flawed leading man"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story continues the series surrounding the men of the New Zealand rugby team (the All Blacks), however don't assume it's a fluffy manfest that just serves a backdrop for some steamy scenes. Introduced in the first two stories (Hemi's and Drew's), Koti is a gorgeous, talented, pro athlete who is used to getting his own way and not having to work very hard to get it. He meets a strong american woman who calls him on his 'stuff' and helps him to learn that some things are worth working for. Even without the underlying plot of the stalker ex-boyfriend, the story was so engaging I hated to put it down. It made me laugh out loud, choke up a bit when warranted, and didn't have long, drawn out periods of angst. I loved that Koti didn't just instantly become a perfect, caring, loving man who was simply misunderstood. Ms. James' ability to create characters who are real, but don't put you off is a true gift. The narrator was fantastic. One of the best I've every heard, with authentic accents, clearly distinguished voices, good male as well as female voices, and a perfect sense of timing to pull off the funny parts. I hope that more of this becomes available on audio soon!

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Just This Once: Escape to New Zealand, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 38 mins)
    • By Rosalind James
    • Narrated By Claire Bocking
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (163)
    Performance
    (152)
    Story
    (153)

    Everyone needs to be rescued sometimes. Everyone but Hannah Montgomery, that is. She just needs a vacation. Three weeks in New Zealand to sort out her life, figure out what she wants, seems just right. Oh, and to relax. She should definitely put that on the agenda. She certainly isn't looking for a fling with a professional rugby player, no matter how attractive he is. Hannah doesn't do casual. But maybe just this once.…

    MJG says: "INTRODUCE YOURSELF TO NEW ZEALAND ... AND ..."
    "Sweet Romance in the vein of Nora Roberts"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I'm always on the lookout for a new romance series that has some humor, keeps things moving along, has likable characters and minimizes the time spent in angst. This story does all of the those things and is in a new venue to me, so I also enjoyed learning about the New Zealander (Kiwi) culture. I would have liked to have seen Hannah get her act together a bit earlier, but it was also nice to have a more realistic timeline to the inevitable commitment to the relationship. Drew was a saint, but if you can't have a gorgeous, sexy, kind and patient man in a HEA where can you have one? The steam level was about that of 2010's Nora Roberts-- just enough to keep your interest, but not enough to make the more sensitive readers blush too badly. The narrator did a great job with the accents and distinguishing voices. She's one of the best I've heard so far, and I've listened to hundreds of books. I hope Audible gets the later books soon. As of this writing, she was up to book 5, with 6 being released in June. Well worth the credit!

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • It Happened One Wedding: FBI-US Attorney Series, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 25 mins)
    • By Julie James
    • Narrated By Karen White
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (171)
    Performance
    (151)
    Story
    (156)

    After a humiliating end to her engagement, investment banker Sidney Sinclair is done with commitment-phobic men. But when her sister winds up engaged after a whirlwind courtship, Sidney is thrown into close contact with exactly the kind of sexy playboy she wants to avoid - the gorgeous best man. She's stuck with him, for better or worse, until her sister walks down the aisle, but that doesn't mean she has to give in to his smooth advances, no matter how tempting they are.... Special agent Vaughn Roberts always gets his man on the job and his woman in bed.

    Houston mom says: "Best story yet"
    "Best story yet"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    It's been a few months since I last listened to a Julie James novel and this one reminded me why I just love this author. Her characters are real, the dialog is laugh out loud one minute then makes your chest tighten the next, and the stories make you want to stay in the car until you finish the book. Karen White does a great job narrating, with a perfect sense of timing when delivering a witty phrase. She also does a very good job distinguishing voices, and avoids that annoying gruff whisper that some female narrators use when trying to express a male voice. If I could give this a 6 I would!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Just to Be with You: The Sullivans, Book 12

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 6 mins)
    • By Bella Andre
    • Narrated By Eva Kaminsky
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (106)
    Performance
    (99)
    Story
    (101)

    Ian Sullivan, the powerful and wealthy CEO of Sullivan Investments, has never failed at anything in his life...apart from love and marriage. Certain that he'll never take the plunge again, the last thing he expects is for a beautiful actress to turn his perfectly organized world completely upside down. Tatiana Landon, one of the hottest talents in Hollywood, has been waiting for true love her whole life. When she meets Ian, she's certain she's finally found it...along with a passion that sizzles hotter than anything in her wildest dreams. All she needs to do now is find a way to convince him to take the risk of loving again.

    jill says: "/The Sullivan Men"
    "Humor and likable characters, but no real story"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love the Sullivans and Bella Andre's witty humor, but her last few stories have just been about the development of the relationship with lots of internal agonizing. Her first novel in this series had a woman escaping from a crazed ex-husband which kept things moving while the relationship matured. I like her writing enough to keep buying the series, but without the underlying plot line, I just don't devour her books any more.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • The Collector

    • UNABRIDGED (15 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Nora Roberts
    • Narrated By Julia Whelan
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (1658)
    Performance
    (1479)
    Story
    (1499)

    From #1 New York Times-best-selling author Nora Roberts comes a novel of a woman who needs nothing, a man who sees everything, and the web of deceit, greed, and danger that brings them together - and that could tear them apart… As a professional house-sitter and freelance writer, nothing ties Lila Emerson down - not her work, not a home, and definitely not a relationship. She spends her life moving from one job to the next, sometimes crashing at a friend 's Manhattan apartment. And though she can appreciate her clients ' extraordinary homes, their expensive collections, and their adorable pets, Lila has never longed for possessions of her own. Everything she has, including her heart, is portable.

    Elaine says: "One of Nora's best in years"
    "Compelling story framing an interesting romance"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The story pulls you in quickly and doesn't let go. I didn't like the overbearing nature of the male lead (Ashton) but could still like him as a character. Lila is strong enough to push back on him and has a wonderful quirkiness that really makes her endearing. The narrator did a great job of dramatizing the book, and overall her voices were good. I'm not a big fan of the 'whispered' male voice that some female narrators (like this one) use, but I guess it would be hard to go down an octave for the entire reading. The Witness had you on the edge of your seat more often that this one, but I still found myself wanting to stay in the car to get to the end of a section. Well worth the credit!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Down to You: The Bad Boys, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (6 hrs and 28 mins)
    • By M. Leighton
    • Narrated By Kate Rudd, Benjamin L. Darcie
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (696)
    Performance
    (637)
    Story
    (639)

    When college student Olivia Townsend returned home to help her father run his business, she never imagined a complication like Cash and Nash Davenport - twin brothers different in so many ways but with one thing in common: an uncontrollable desire for Olivia. Cash is dangerous, sexy, and bad to the bone - a man whose kisses make Olivia forget she is playing with fire. Nash is successful, reliable, and intensely passionate - and already taken. But all it takes is one soft stroke to make Olivia forget he belongs to someone else. However, Olivia is in for a surprise....

    Jordy says: "The Bad Boys with a twist...."
    "Good story but watch out for the cliff hanger"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    The cliffhanger is a good news bad news type of thing. I only gave this book 4 stars because while I liked the characters, there wasn't much 'story' there. However, I can already tell that will change with the next book since this one ended with a cliffhanger, Which is the bad news. You have to listen to the next to find out what happens.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Practice Makes Perfect

    • UNABRIDGED (9 hrs and 4 mins)
    • By Julie James
    • Narrated By Karen White
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (168)
    Performance
    (152)
    Story
    (153)

    Payton Kendall and J. D. Jameson are lawyers who know the meaning of objection. A feminist to the bone, Payton has fought hard to succeed in a profession dominated by men. Born wealthy, privileged, and cocky, J. D. has fought hard to ignore her. Face-to-face, they're perfectly civil. They have to be. For eight years they have kept a safe distance and tolerated each other as coworkers for one reason only: To make partner at the firm.

    "unknown" says: "Perfect blend of romance and humor!"
    "Great story if you don't mind conflict"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    This story pits two lawyers against each other, competing for a partnership in their firm. It's exceptionally well written with characters you care for, a story line that moves along and has witty repartee. I would have given it 5 stars but I personally don't care for a story line that has a lot of conflict in it. This is a PG version of Julie James, not the steamy side you see in her FBI series. I highly recommend it.

    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Blue Skies

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 22 mins)
    • By Robyn Carr
    • Narrated By Therese Plummer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (102)
    Performance
    (97)
    Story
    (99)

    Nikki Burgess survived a terrible marriage and a worse divorce. She's just about given up hope of ever finding happiness. But when her ex-husband suddenly dies, she gets custody of her kids again - and a chance to start over. Dixie McPherson, on the other hand, has had way too much love. She has 11 tennis bracelets, dozens of trinkets, piles of sexy lingerie, and a tarnished reputation when all she ever wanted was true love, a partner, and a family. Carlisle Bartlett is loyal, kindhearted, and the funniest guy slinging drinks in the back of an airplane. But he has an ugly little secret. The only kind of love he's used to comes with bruises.

    Houston mom says: "Earlier G rated Robyn Carr"
    "Earlier G rated Robyn Carr"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    When I read the other reviews, I knew this was going to be a story that focused more on the airline industry and the strong woman pilot than romance, but didn't realize it was from a story she wrote in 2005. I really like Robyn Carr, and usually get to know and love her characters. However this book treats three main characters almost equally, so you don't ever get inside the head of any one of them. The very mild G-rated romance of one of the secondary characters (Dixie) is sweet but hardly draws you in, and the expected happily ever after ending for the main character (Nikki) is wrapped up so quickly and neatly at the end that I was left saying, huh? This is a perfectly pleasant read (listen) but if you're expecting Virgin River, you'll be disappointed.

    4 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • The Newcomer: Thunder Point, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Robyn Carr
    • Narrated By Therese Plummer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (439)
    Performance
    (406)
    Story
    (402)

    Single dad and Thunder Point's deputy sheriff "Mac" McCain has worked hard to keep his town safe and his daughter happy. Now he's found his own happiness with Gina James. The longtime friends have always shared the challenges and rewards of raising their adolescent daughters. With an unexpected romance growing between them, they're feeling like teenagers themselves - suddenly they can't get enough of each other. And just when things are really taking off, their lives are suddenly thrown into chaos. When Mac's long-lost ex-wife shows up in town, drama takes on a whole new meaning.

    Liza-Maree says: "Fan of Robyn Carr"
    "Felt like a sequel"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    While the Virgin River series just built upon the general relationships, this story was exclusively just a continuation of those started in the Wanderer. It started off with all sorts of things going wrong, and didn't ever reach the laugh out loud, sweet moments I so love with her books. I'll continue reading the series, but they won't be the first thing I download anymore.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  • Deep in the Valley: Grace Valley, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 27 mins)
    • By Robyn Carr
    • Narrated By Therese Plummer
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (281)
    Performance
    (255)
    Story
    (257)

    Welcome to Grace Valley, California - where blood runs thicker…ties are stronger…and love is all the more sweet. Visitors to the town often remark about the valley's peace and beauty - both of which are plentiful. Unlocked doors, front porches, pies cooling in the windows - this is country life at its finest. But visitors don't always see what lies at the heart of a community. Or just beyond.… June Hudson grew up in Grace Valley, the daughter of the town doctor. Leaving only to get her medical training, she returned home and followed in her father's footsteps.

    Robbie says: "A Marriage Made in Heaven"
    "Grace Valley is NOT Virgin River"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    I love the Virgin River series, and was hoping this was more of the same. However, unlike Virgin River, I didn't find myself smiling at the characters and situations and there was no steam-- not even hot water. Had I read this book first, I probably wouldn't have tried her others-- what a shame that would have been since she's now my favorite author! Terese Plummer was wonderful as always, but even she couldn't pull out this rather sad, rambling story. It wasn't terrible, but just simply wasn't good. While the VR books use the underlying poverty and crime in the area to highlight just how good the people of VR are, this book just never got there. And given that the romance between June and xxx (don't want to spoil it for those who do read this) didn't really happen until the last few chapters, then ended with 'her clothes fell to the floor in a pile' disqualify this as a romance novel to me. I purchased the second book before starting this, expecting to want to jump right in after finishing as I did all the VR books, but I plan to return it for a credit. I love Robyn Carr, but not this series!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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