I took a chance on "Western Winds" by an author and narrator unknown to me, and without reviews...but am I glad I did. This well written book, has all the elements a listener could hope for: mystery, betrayal, secrets, intrigue, romance and passion.
This action-packed story takes place about 2 years after the Civil War ended, about 1867.
"Western Winds" is an emotionally intense story about a sprawling Texas ranch, the Reina, and the 20 year old Lacey Garrett who inherits her father's ranch. Reina is all Lacey cares about. Raised more like a son than a daughter, she has been groomed to run Reina, and Lacey is determined to run it on her own. Lacey knows she has her work cut out for herself, but of all the difficulties Lacey could for-see, she never could imagine the last minute change in her father’s will which leaves 1/2 Reina to another heir.
A stranger to Lacey, twenty-six year old Rafe Parrish, the other heir, is no happier to be sharing control of Reina with Lacey than she is of sharing it with him. Angered by her arrogance, Rafe is determined to have it all: the Reina and Lacey herself.
I don't want to be a spoiler, so I will stop here--but I think any historical romance lover will enjoy "Western Winds", whether into the western genre, or not.
I highly recommend it!
"Lady Dearing's Masquerade" is a story about a long suffering love affair between two unlikely individuals; a lady shunned by the ton, with a tarnished reputation, and a man with the reputation of a saint. How the Lady fights to keep the troubled children from a Founding Home in her care, against those that would take them from her.
A good story, performed well by Elena Greene who does both men and women's voices equally well.
I've always enjoyed Agatha Christy mysteries and "Philomel Cottage" was no exception. It was well written, with her famous twist at the end. It was a little less than an hour, well spent.
Hugh Fraser did a good job as narrator..
The story is basically about the life of Alex, the brother of the Chieftain of their clan. Alex is a gorgeous warrior who loves to fight, wench and tell stories. Glenna is the fiery, outspoken daughter of the Chieftain of a neighboring clan. Alex has sworn not to marry, and Glenna has swore never to remarry-- having knifed her husband and been set-aside.
The story moved a little too slow to hold my interest, so it took me awhile to finish it, but the last several chapters were very good with lots of action. All-in-all it was a decent read. The hero and heroine were likeable. The author did not use a lot of filler words, did a good job with her descriptions, and the sexual scenes were not too long nor too frequent, although it was often on Alex's mind.
The narration was superb. I will look for more books narrated by Derek Perkins.
Carmen Rose reads well, but everyone sound alike, both male and females. With a talented narrator "A Good Debutant's Guide to Ruin" could have been entertaining, but even the love scenes sounded like someone reading a recipe. The narrator sure makes a difference.
Historical romance is my genre of choice, but it took me 3 tries to finish "A Good Debutant's Guide to Ruin" -- I cannot recommend it.
I have 9 unheard books in my Library, because they could not hold my attention. But I was riveted to "The White Lord of Wellsbourne" from beginning to end. I have found a new favorite author. I read so much it takes a talented author to keep me interested. I'm already wanting to read/hear more from Kathryn Le Vegue.
I'm not going to write a summary of the book, because I think it is unnecessary, with what has already been said--but I do want to say this is not an insipid book in any way, it takes the reader through an array of emotions, but boredom is not one of them. It has everything that makes a book interesting: romance, intrigue, humor, suspense, likable characters.
This author is so good she does not have to use what I call "filler words", or be overly descriptive to depict people, battle scenes, gardens, etc. for the reader to be able to see them with their" mind's eye".
Knowing that in History, King Richard lost the Battle of Bosworth Field in 1485 to Henry Tudor, I wondered what would happen to Mathew Wellsbourne, a supporter of Richard? It was a surprising ending.
"Married By Midnight" is an effortless read, lacking in emotional stimulation.
Lord Garrett, the illegitimate youngest son a Duke, returns home after 7 years to fulfill the requirements of the Dukes latest will; that all his sons must marry before Christmas or lose their inheritance. The old Duke, developing mental disease, believes a curse will destroy the castle unless all his sons are married before midnight on Christmas eve.
Lord Garrett has no wish to marry, so his two older brothers find him a wife that will be a wife in name only. After their marriage, they will each go their separate ways. Afraid of being married off to some old lecher, ruined Lady Anne, disowned by her family, with no money and no prospects welcomes the opportunity to live independently on the money she will receive for marrying Lord Garrett, although they have never met.
"Married By Midnight" does not live up to what I expect from Julianne MacLean.
The widowed Mrs. Pollifax , bored with retirement, becomes a courier for the FBI. In "The Amazing Mrs. Pollifax" she is sent to Istanbul to meet with a defecting Russian double agent, carrying a passport and money to give her so she can fly to the the US for sanction.
If you have read or heard any of Mrs. Pollifax books you know nothing is that simple, nothing ever goes as planned. She can get into and out of situations that have you laughing out loud. In "The Amazing Mrs. Pollifax", Mrs. Polifax keeps losing the agent she came to help and finding her again. The ruthless kidnappers are relentless in their pursuit, and just when Mrs. Polifax believes they have escaped, they are caught again.
The bodyguard sent with her for protection is killed, and she does not return to the Hotel, so no-one knows where she is, as she sets out to accomplish the job she was hired to do. Only Mrs. Polifax would hold a room of people at bay with a wooden gun, as she and her new friend rescue the "Agent" from the kidnappers.
I highly recommend Mrs. Pollifax books if you are in the mood for a little intrigue and humor.
I suggest reading the first book "The Unexpected Mrs. Pollifax" before reading any others.
Barbara Rosenblat is a very talented narrator.I enjoyed her performance very much.
I didn't want to stop listening to it, but because of the length of the story, I had to break it up. It was a little confusing in the beginning with so many characters being introduced all at once. But soon, under the expert pen of Patricia Ryan, each character took on their personal identities. The hero, Tom Proctor, an ex-crime reporter, is hired to write the tell-all Bio of Willow Scott, a movie star, who died before giving him all the details of her life. Willow wants Tom to write the truth about her life, so he needs to do what he does best, investigate.
His research takes him to the small town Willow grew up in, and to the Turner family who took her in after her mother's body is identified as the one found in her small home on Cholra Road. Hanna Scott , a hippie, died Willow's senior year on Halloween.
Ally Turner, our heroine, was Willow's best childhood friend--now EXfriend. Tom came for Willow's funeral in her hometown which was overseen by Dorthy Turner, Ally's mother. Ally's father, Hart Turner, had died in an auto accident the same night Willow ran away from the Turner home. The list of Turner characters are: Ally Turner and her mother, Dorthy, her small dog, Snowball, Ally's younger sister Brook, and Willow's confidant, her older brother Hart JR, who does not make an appearance at the funeral.
There is Vincent Furley, a movie/TV star, and Willow's ex-lover. There's also Hart JR's best friend and local law officer, Ethan, who looks after the Turner ladies. Ethan became Cheif of Police after the alledged suicidal drowning of the late Cheif of Police, although no body was ever found.
Tom wonder's what Ally, who was Willow's best friend through high school, had against Willow, and knows she is hiding something.
Eric G. Dove gave an excellent performance. He does women voices better than other male narrators I've heard. He has a well modulated voice I could listen to all day. I will be looking for books he narrates.
I highly recommend "Pure and Simple".
The beginning of "Echoes of Ancient Dreams" began in modern day Ireland, where Destry, a physician, meets Conner, a professor of ancient Ireland. They were immediately drawn together, and were sent through time together back to the 900's.
A sorcerer was waiting for them.
Although more of a mythical story, it seemed to be written for children -- until the last 30 or so minutes, When they had detailed sex. Destry said, she felt dirty doing it with the children in the room, and that is how it felt listening to it.
I hung in there to the end waiting for something interesting to happen, I'm glad it was only a little over 4 hours long.
I've never read/listened to Kathryn Le Vegue before, but if this is a sample of her writing, I won't be listening to her again. Even the ending left a lot to be desired, you can use your imagine how you want it to end.
Tim Campbell has a nice voice and does accents well. His narration was the best part of the audio.
I was very disappointed.
I really did want to like this book. Mail Order Bride western romances are some of my favorites. But this book lacked substance, not much of a story, yet. After listening 7 hours I see no purpose in the story. Morgan and Jane are likable private individuals. Morgan likes to eat, as do his ranch hands. It goes into detail about what they eat and how they eat it, Jane's ride to and from the ranch, who is seated where in the church. There is so much detail the story (if there is one) is lost.
They talk about rustlers, and someone stays with Jane making sure she does not go outside. The ranch-hands, even Morgan, hang the wash, etc, to keep Jane inside. But no rustlers are encountered, no action taking place. Very little is said about the rustlers in the first 7 hours...actually little is said about anything, other than mundane things, lighting the hard to light cook-stove, cooking, Jane having one of the "hands" buy her a pretty sewing box, she had seen in the mercantile when she was in town, paying for it with her own money, rather than ask Morgan for it. She mends his clothes. The only excitement (if you can call it that) was when Morgan tried to ride a Mustang, and hurt his ankle and ribs.
There has been no romance thus far, even after consummating their marriage. Some of my lack of enjoyment in the story could be the narrator, like Jane and Morgan she is straight forward in her reading of the text; unemotional. Most of Ms Ragan's performance sounds by rote.
There seem to be contradictions from the Prologue to after Jane arrived in Bitter Springs and married. I had to go back and listen to the prologue to see if I was mistake about what transpired between Jane and her cousin, since this was my 4th attempt at listening to "In Want of Wife", but I was remembering right.
I'm too bored now, but maybe I will try once again to listen to "In Want of Wife" and see if any loose ends gets tied up. I would fast forward to the last chapter, but could miss explanations for the contradictions, if there are any.
I see several people enjoyed the book; literature, like food, is certainly up to an individual's taste.
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