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Smitten with Reading

Texas | Member Since 2011

19
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 36 reviews
  • 38 ratings
  • 150 titles in library
  • 7 purchased in 2015
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  • Deadly Ties: Kinncaid Brothers Series, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 44 mins)
    • By Jaycee Clark
    • Narrated By Johanna Parker
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (69)
    Performance
    (60)
    Story
    (60)

    Taylor Reese is done with men, except for her son, Ryan. Dr. Gavin Kinncaid realizes Ms. Reese is the only woman he's ever wanted to strangle, but fate and passion soon twist their feelings into something other than antagonism, first into passion and then into love. But someone plots to rip this new happy family apart, spilling pain and death in their wake.

    CAROLYN says: "It's an absorbing, non-stop listen and I LOVED it."
    "B+ overall rating..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall....4.00
    Performance...4.50
    Story...3.75

    I am really loving the audiobooks by this author and narrator. This one was particularly good for the first part of the book. I liked the strife between the hero and heroine. I enjoyed the dynamic of their jobs (even though their initial meeting was extremely tragic)...the social worker and the physician. Their chemistry was incredible through the first parts of the story. I also really enjoyed the whole backstory for Taylor and her ex-husband. That just about broke my heart when that all came out...what a shocker.

    Although I really loved the two of them together, I'll admit that their relationship flip-flopped WAY too quickly for my liking. It seemed like they were at each other's throat one minute and then pledging forever in the next. What? That was my main issue with this book, although the ending did help to make up for it because the ending of the book was really good, too.

    And I need to note the narrator here. This book features a whole host of characters...about a dozen adults and two kids which speak regularly. Never did I have an confusion about who was talking at any point in time. Johanna Parker has a HUGE range of voices and inflections that made her simply a joy as a narrator.

    The suspense line features a bad guy that's never a secret or a surprise in this book, but I did find myself incredibly intrigued by older Kinncaid brother, Ian. I need to know what exactly he does that has left him estranged from the family for so long while still remaining completely loyal.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • McFarland's Farm: Hope, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (2 hrs and 34 mins)
    • By Cardeno C.
    • Narrated By Paul Morey
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (54)
    Performance
    (52)
    Story
    (53)

    Wealthy, attractive Lucas Reika treats life like a party, moving from bar to bar and man to man. Thumbing his nose at his restaurateur father's demand that he earn his keep, Lucas instead seduces a valued employee in the kitchen of their flagship restaurant, earning himself an ultimatum: lose access to his father's money or stay in the middle of nowhere with a man he has secretly lusted over from afar.

    Mel says: "Rich boy from the city and his big,solid Farmer"
    "B rating..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 3.5
    Performance... 3.5
    Story.... 3.75

    This was a sweet little audiobook and I really enjoyed it. I especially like that it was under 3 hours so it wasn't a huge time commitment, although it still felt like a fairly complete story.

    Lucas is a guy floundering. He's a trust-fund baby and as a result is a bit spoiled and self-indulgent. His father is a huge restaurant mogul who's very goal-driven and doesn't quite understand his son. But when Lucas seduces the flag-ship restaurant's chef...in the kitchen...that's the final straw for Lucas' father and he sends him to Jared.

    Jared is a rough, big farmer. He was married to Lucas' sister until they both agreed that although they loved one another, Jared was gay and their's wasn't any great passion for the long haul. They work better as best friends.

    What neither of these guys realize is that they've both been harboring a secret attraction for each other over the years. But they have to work through all those boundaries they've developed before they even have a chance with one another.

    Like I said, I enjoyed this one. While I would have liked it to have just a bit more depth, that's part of the price for having that short time commitment which I loved. Overall, I was happy with it though. I liked the foodie element to the story and liked how opposite the guys are. I love Jared's relationship with his ex-wife and really wish I could have seen her reaction to the guys' new status together.

    This is the first in a new series and I liked it. I can't wait to see what else Cardeno C. plans to do with the books.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Snow Globe

    • UNABRIDGED (58 mins)
    • By LE Franks
    • Narrated By Dave Gillies
    Overall
    (15)
    Performance
    (15)
    Story
    (15)

    Kris Hamilton escaped the rat race in LA to live his dream of owning an art studio and making snow globes in a Christmas-themed town in northern Minnesota. But life in a tiny town isn't as peaceful as advertised, and being treated like an outsider is making Kris’s Tourette's flare up. When he inadvertently offends Tyr Tollefson - a beautiful blond giant of a man - Kris is ready to chuck it all.

    Heather K says: "Cute but I had issues"
    "B rating overall..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:

    Overall.... 3.5
    Performance... 3.00
    Story.... 4.0

    Okay, I listened to this book in audio form. It was Christmas and this short story is less than an hour which made it an ideal listen while I wrapped presents.

    But as a regular audiobook listener, I had issues with this one. The narrator, while I love his sexy (Scottish? I think) accent, simply read the book. There was no change with his inflections for the different characters...which made this a really tough book to listen to. When reading, you have a change in paragraph to know when the speaker changes. In audiobooks, narrators typically change their voice so you know when the speaker changes. That wasn't present in this audiobook so it was hard to keep track of the story for me. Like I said, his voice and accent was beautiful and he read the story very well, but as a regular audiobook listener, that wasn't enough for me. I need voices and different inflections for the different characters.

    But at the heart of this is an incredible heartwarming story and characters during the Christmas season. I did like the book. Knowing that the audio was under an hour, the story must have been extremely short on words, but I'll be honest, it never felt that way to me. I loved the two main character, Kris and Tyr...and Bun with her story line was a great addition. This book is about acceptance and finding a place in the world. For these three...that's with each other. It's a Christmas book so it's sweet and simply made me feel better for having read/listened to it. Overall, I liked it.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Five Golden Rings: Facets of Passion

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 29 mins)
    • By Jeffe Kennedy
    • Narrated By Emily Caldwell
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3)
    Performance
    (3)
    Story
    (3)

    Matilda Campbell's plans to spend Christmas solo in the sun take an erotic turn when she encounters the handsome and enigmatic Miguel D'Oro on the plane to Mexico. As the CEO of a major firm, Tilda's used to being the one in charge - but now she'll have to learn how to take orders instead. In the spirit of the season, Miguel offers Tilda naughty gifts for each of the twelve days of Christmas.

    Smitten with Reading says: "B+ rating..."
    "B+ rating..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.0
    Performance... 4.0
    Story.... 4.0
    I went onto Twitter one night in December looking for an audiobook recommendation for a Christmas themed book. Jeffe Kennedy volunteered that she had one so I went to go check it out on Audible. Right now, I will confess that I can't usually listen to erotic novels or even really descriptive sex scenes via audiobook because it makes me cringe for that poor narrator that had to do the scenes out loud with an audience. So I wasn't real sure if this one would work or not for me. Well, rest assured...it totally did work for me. Not once did I wince or cringe with the audiobook descriptions in this book. The narrator/author combo was perfect and that's a HUGE thing for me...especially in an erotic romance.

    This is a Christmas themed BDSM book. Tilda planned a Christmas island excursion with her boyfriend who didn't let her know that he was bailing on her until she was already at the airport. As a result, she's pretty upset on the plane when she meets Miguel. Miguel, as the single lawyer in the family is headed to the family resort to take care of some business issues...not fun. But he sees Tilda as a means to add some light to the not-fun trip and offers her a deal. They will play for the 12 days of christmas...his rules, although she may end it at any time. And that sets them off on a very sexy couple of weeks.

    The book is told entirely from Tilda's perspective, but I really enjoyed it. Tilda is smart and has her own real-world pressures, but with Miguel she's able to let go of all that and simply have fun...maybe for the first time in her life. The book takes place on an island so it didn't have an over-the-top kind of holiday feel besides the fact that the gifts follow the 12 days song. So I honestly think it would work as a year-round read. It's pretty sexy, but the BDSM play never goes to the extremes at all. I enjoyed it and would definitely recommend it especially if you're looking for a shorter audiobook with some spicy sex.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Come to Me Quietly: Closer to You, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By A .L. Jackson
    • Narrated By Todd Haberkorn, Tanya Eby
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (105)
    Performance
    (98)
    Story
    (97)

    Aleena Moore is haunted by Jared Holt. It's been six years since she's seen her brother's best friend, the self-destructive bad boy she secretly loved in high school. As the years pass, she knows it's time to move on. Time to decide between a practical nursing degree and her true dream as an artist. Time to get over Jared and give another guy a chance…Just when she opens her heart to her friend, Gabe, Aly returns home to find Jared sleeping on her couch. The teenage boy she loved has grown into a man she can't resist.

    Tweetyct2 says: "Beautifully written story"
    "B- overall rating..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:

    Overall.... 3.25
    Performance... 4.0
    Story.... 3.0

    I'm a girl who loves angst in my stories, but something about this one was just too over-the-top emotionally for me. I spent a lot of the story rolling my eyes at the characters...and I'll be honest, I'm not sure that would have been the case if I hadn't been listening to it in audio. I don't think it would have bothered me near as much if I had just been reading the book...although I don't think that would have solved my issue completely. This was my first audiobook in the New Adult genre and I just think that's not ideal for me.

    I do like the way this book was done with two narrators though. The book alternates the first person pov chapters between Jared and Aleena and there was both a male and female narrators for those chapters. I liked that and truly enjoyed both narrators. They stayed on character and had great distinctive voices for all the various characters in the story.

    Then there was the romance. Like I said, it was a bit over the top for me, but that's the way that the NA genre is written it seems. The story did work for me with the characters backgrounds and it definitely had credible conflict. I enjoyed the way the author wrote the flashbacks and intertwined them throughout.

    This definitely wasn't my favorite book ever, but the book is written in the normal way for the new adult genre. I think if you generally enjoy that genre, you will like this one too. My heart did break for Jared and his self-loathing at something that was simply a mistake. I had issues with how other's dealt with him when it all happened, because hands down, they were wrong and did him wrong as a result and really ruined a kid's life. He didn't deserve that.

    I also really enjoyed the moments with Ally drawing. I liked that she saw Jared behind all the rough and sometimes harsh demeanor.

    Not my favorite book, but it wasn't bad. Lesson learned...listening to an audiobook in the NA genre is not for me.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Frost Burned: Mercy Thompson, Book 7

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 1 min)
    • By Patricia Briggs
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2457)
    Performance
    (2254)
    Story
    (2267)

    Mercy Thompson's life has undergone a seismic change. Becoming the mate of Adam Hauptman - the charismatic Alpha of the local werewolf pack - has made her a stepmother to his daughter, Jesse, a relationship that brings moments of blissful normalcy to Mercy's life. But on the edges of humanity, what passes for a minor mishap on an ordinary day can turn into so much more.... After an accident in bumper-to-bumper traffic, Mercy and Jesse can't reach Adam - or anyone else in the pack for that matter. They've all been abducted.....

    ShySusan says: "One of the best urban fantasy series"
    "A rating...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:

    Overall.... 4.5
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 4.5

    Absolutely everything about this book was good! I loved this one! I particularly like the way this one started with Jesse and Mercy doing Black Friday shopping and all the craziness that entails. I honestly was riveted from page one with what was going on with the pack, the wreck, everything. This book grabbed hold of me and never let go. Loved, loved, LOVED all the action in this one.

    And I also really enjoyed being back in the arms of the pack again...both Adam's wolf-pack and Mercy's pack of strays. Ben & Kyle...gah, I love both these guys and I loved how much page time they got. Honestly, I think Ben is one of the most under-appreciated wolves. He is so strong and his will-power in this one was amazing. I love how much he is tied to and devoted to her...probably because their relationship was so not that way to begin with. They just have a great partnership...mainly in that it's so unexpected.

    And this book explored even more of Mercy's powers. I love how much they continue to grow and evolve and surprise even her. Coyote is an interesting mentor to her. Honestly, I don't even really like the character, but I like what Patricia Briggs has done with him in the story to help Mercy.

    And then there's the little easter egg of happiness in this book...TWO WHOLE CHAPTERS FROM ADAM'S POV. I squealed aloud when the first one happened and then couldn't believe that there was a second. Mercy and Adam are in such a good stable place which is crazy when you consider how unstable their lives are on a daily basis. Their marriage has enriched them and I like that a lot. No, he hates that she risks herself and his wolf fights him on letting her do her thing...BUT there's a respect between them. She takes him into consideration when she knows she's doing something risky and does everything in her power to negate the risk and to let him know exactly what's going on so there's no question if it goes bad.

    In this book there were more vampire politics. Stefan...love him. Wulfe...I like him too and think in the end of the series he's gonna be a serious ally too. He's so slippery, but I think he honestly admires what Mercy is able to accomplish and I think that will end up working for good. The whole story with Marcelia's car cracked me up through the whole book. I loved everyone's reactions when they would see the car and then find out it was hers. It's that thread of humor that flows through these books which just puts them above-par for my enjoyment levels. These stories make me laugh and they make me cry, but above all I adore Mercy and her neverending fight for what's right...no matter the cost. That right there is the perfect Urban Fantasy set-up and why this continues to be one of my top UF series reads ever!!

    And yes, Lorelei King continues to be brilliant in her narration of these books. Wow, that woman has talent!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • River Marked: Mercy Thompson, Book 6

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 54 mins)
    • By Patricia Briggs
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (2925)
    Performance
    (2120)
    Story
    (2119)

    Car mechanic Mercy Thompson has always known there was something different about her, and not just the way she can make a VW engine sit up and beg. Mercy is a shapeshifter, a talent she inherited from her long-gone father. She's never known any others of her kind. Until now.

    Yuriko says: "Love it"
    "B rating overall..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 3.75
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 3.25

    This book takes Mercy on a different type of adventure as it's just her and Adam on their honeymoon for most of the book and the bad guy is a water devil...something that Adam can't help fight since as a werewolf, he sinks in water. As a result, this book has a very different feel for Mercy. She doesn't have the pack or her pack of misfit paranormals helping her. Instead she has a lot of Indian-based lore legends who help out.

    I'll admit that I missed the normal characters in this book. I love all those characters that Mercy is normally surrounded by. They all have this great camaraderie in their interactions that build the fun in the story. That was missing in this book for me as I just didn't have that same attachments to her band of helpers in this book. I wanted Ben and Stefan and Jessi and Sam and... well, you get the idea. The book simply wasn't as good without them.

    The book does have more Adam and Mercy moments and I enjoyed that aspect of it. It's wonderful to see their relationship and trust grow past where either of them are truly comfortable. But they are comfortable in their love so they trust that when their instincts are screaming. I loved that Adam managed to hold back and simply watch while Mercy did her thing in this book. That's a true sign of love and I did enjoy that he has grown so much to trust her like that...even to the point of losing her.

    Overall, this wasn't my favorite book in the series, but it was still important to the overall story arc and it was still enjoyable. I understand that there are going to be these types of books for me in any series and I'm definitely okay with that. The plus to that is that I was actually able to listen to the entire book on audio rather than skipping to the book where I could read faster myself. And honestly that's its own special treat just because the narrator, Lorelei King, does such an incredible job on this series. Her range of voices and accents is truly impressive. NEVER do I get confused on who's talking and with literally hundreds of characters in the entire series, that's truly impressive. On to book #6.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Darkness Rises: Immortal Guardians Series, Book 4

    • UNABRIDGED (11 hrs and 39 mins)
    • By Dianne Duvall
    • Narrated By Kirsten Potter
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (705)
    Performance
    (664)
    Story
    (666)

    Krysta is used to getting the drop on vampires. Her "special abilities" aren't much, but the plan is simple - she plays helpless pretty young thing to lure them in. Then her shoto swords come out and it's bye-bye, bloodsucker. Until one night she finds herself with an unexpected ally. He's a vampire, all right, but different. Mysterious. Handsome. And more interested in saving her skin than draining it. Etienne has been an Immortal Guardian for two hundred years-long enough to know that Krysta is special.

    NEW NAME says: "They're back!!!!!"
    "B+ rating...."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.25
    Performance... 4.5
    Story.... 4.0

    It's been a while since I dropped into the Immortal Guardian world and I had forgotten just how much I love it. This was a great book to get me back into it.

    Sean and Krysta made this book for me. I loved the siblings who have been fighting vampires together with no real training or experience for 6 years. And they really have been working blind. They have no idea about the Immortals or Seconds although Krysta has heard rumblings from the vampires as she battles them. Both Krysta and Sean are "gifted ones"...they have other powers. For Krysta, she can see auras and with vampires that means she can see their aura shift in battle telling her which way they are going to move before they attack. Sean is a healer. He's the one who puts Krysta back together after a night of hunting. They believe in what they are doing although it's running them ragged to hunt on top of med school for Sean and jobs for both of them.

    Etienne runs into Krysta during a battle and is shocked at how well she handles herself. But she's still human and therefore vulnerable so he begins to follow her at night to "help her out"...something that Krysta doesn't appreciate especially since she thinks he's a vampire too.

    These books have everything. The romance is always stellar, the paranormal world exciting and interesting, but the group dynamic is perfection. I love the scenes where all the characters in this huge cast are together. The characters have a wide mix of personalities, but they are all quick-witted and the back and forth between them is all so much fun. Whether it's conversations between the various siblings or the Immortals or the humans, they all have a great snarky wit that I just love.

    Reading these books are fun and listening to them on audio just enhances that. Kirsten Potter is an incredible narrator and she masters ALL the different voices and accents perfectly. This is one of my favorite series to listen to on audio and her talent is a lot of the reason for that.

    I highly recommend the entire series and definitely this book too. If you can listen to it on audio, I think it's even better, but the books are good and action-filled so I'll tell you right now that you may want a copy of the book too because there will be times when you want the speed of being able to read it yourself because you have to know what happens next. A superb installment to this series.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Blood Bound: Mercy Thompson, Book 2

    • UNABRIDGED (10 hrs and 2 mins)
    • By Patricia Briggs
    • Narrated By Lorelei King
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (3277)
    Performance
    (2264)
    Story
    (2266)

    Mechanic Mercy Thompson has friends in low places - and in dark ones. And now she owes one of them a favor. Since she can shapeshift at will, she agrees to act as some extra muscle when her vampire friend Stefan goes to deliver a message to another of his kind. But this new vampire is hardly ordinary - and neither is the demon inside of him.

    Deborah says: "Blood Bound"
    "A rating overall"
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.5
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 4.5

    I read the first book in this series 2-3 years ago and thought it was "okay" but nothing to rave about. I also listened to the Alpha & Omega series all on audio and LOVED them. I know the two series intertwine, so I decided to give this one another shot on audio. (I did re-listen to book #1 on audio too and while I don't plan on re-reviewing it, I will tell you that I loved it much, MUCH more the second time around.)

    So this is my review of book #2 in this series...in a nutshell...I'M SOLD. I'm definitely a Mercy Thompson fan now. I did a mix of reading and audio on this book depending on my schedule and that is honestly how I'll probably do the rest of this entire series. I adore Lorelei King's narration, but can read myself so much faster so there are times when I just want to get to the juicy parts and then I relish those on audio with all the narration inflections that add so much to ALL of these many characters.

    Things have changed for the wolves in this book since book #1...werewolves have come out to the world. But rather than focus the story line on that, this book really dealt with the vampires in this world and their abilities to manipulate magic. There were some amazingly interesting scenes in this one. I'm especially intrigued by Wulfe. And OMG, Stefan...I knew he had a different perspective on Mercy, but did not expect that story line to go where it did, but I like it! My heart aches so hard for Samuel. Because I've read all the Alpha & Omega series, I have a pretty good idea of what the future holds for him and like Mercy I just want to hold him tight and comfort him. Those scenes with her and him are magic. While I fully think she belongs with Adam, I love the connection she has with all the males in these books. She's an empathetic person and that enables her to reach them in a way that other women can't. She also has a special place as a walker which I think furthers that.

    I'll be honest, there wasn't a whole lot of quality Adam and Mercy time in this book, but I was okay with that. Everything about this installment of the series made me love it more. I like how strong Mercy is. She's tough, but it's an honest tough...she gets terrified, but is absolutely willing to work through that to save her friends. She may not be part of the Pack officially, but she has her own bigger pack filled with the wolves, Stefan, Zee, Tony, and humans that she protects with everything she is. And she is a lot. This story really began to delve into her Walker capabilities, but I think the author has barely scratched the surface. I'm ready to dive into book #3.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • His to Protect: Red Stone Security Series, Book 5

    • UNABRIDGED (3 hrs and 20 mins)
    • By Katie Reus
    • Narrated By Pyper Down
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (29)
    Performance
    (27)
    Story
    (28)

    No woman ever affected Red Stone Security expert Kell Malone quite like Charlotte Bastien. It’s been a year since that incredibly intense night they spent together and he still can’t get her out of his head. When he discovers she’s in Miami - with their three-month-old son - he’s stunned. Hurt. He’s also determined to know his child, and if she’ll give him the chance, to make a life with the stubborn woman who has sworn off love.

    Smitten with Reading says: "B+ overall rating..."
    "B+ overall rating..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 4.0
    Performance... 4.0
    Story.... 4.0

    I only listen to audiobooks while I'm doing my household chores each week and honestly, I try not to spend too much time in those chores each week. As a result, it can sometimes take me over a month to get through a full audiobook. That's a bit too much time to invest, but that's where this audio was perfect for me. I'm a romantic suspense girl and with just over 3 hours of audio on the unabridged version of this story, it was perfect for me.

    And in this book, that shortened story worked for me simply because Kell and Charlotte have their history behind them. Kell loved Charlotte for years, but she was married to his best friend. A best friend that she found out was cheating on her after his death. In the midst of the confusion of her husband's death, they got swept away with desire and had a one night stand. Kell wanted it to be so much more. Charlotte couldn't handle that and fled. Then she had a baby...Kell's baby.

    This story takes place when that baby is three months old...so basically a year after their single night. Like I said, I'm not sure if this shortened story would have worked for me without their history. Charlotte also realizes that she did Kell wrong by not getting in touch with him when she got pregnant. I love that she owned up to that and instead of bristling at Kell's edicts, she agrees that he has some valid reasons for his demands. That was such a turnaround from most hidden baby stories and I liked the change. Also, the high drama of the situation (she stumbles on a murder) makes their sudden closeness even more believable.

    I liked this one. I think the narrator did a great job on the audiobook and I love the short time needed to commit to this book. I plan to listen to more of the Red Stone series this way. I hope they all play out as well for me. I think that they will.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Dirty Kiss, Book 1

    • UNABRIDGED (8 hrs and 21 mins)
    • By Rhys Ford
    • Narrated By Greg Tremblay
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (192)
    Performance
    (184)
    Story
    (186)

    Cole Kenjiro McGinnis, ex-cop and PI, is trying to get over the shooting death of his lover when a supposedly routine investigation lands in his lap. Investigating the apparent suicide of a prominent Korean businessman's son proves to be anything but ordinary, especially when it introduces Cole to the dead man's handsome cousin, Kim Jae-Min.

    T. Henry says: "Almost better than the book!!! And I love the book"
    "B rating overall..."
    Overall
    Performance
    Story

    My Review:
    Overall.... 3.75
    Performance... 4.75
    Story.... 3.0
    Hmm, something about this story just didn't quite do it for me. The book goes heavily into Korean culture and since it was that culture that played so heavily into the negative aspects of the story line, I had a hard time appreciating it.

    Cole is a private eye investing the suicide death of Jae's cousin, who was a closeted gay man. The suicide and suspense line has a whole somewhat fascinating side to this story that leads Cole to Jae. Jae is also a closeted gay man...closeted because of his family and the Korean ideals that they hold up. It's a bizarre attitude. No one is happy about the gay men, but as long as they don't flaunt it, it can be ignored. Jae is fairly ostracized by his family, but his loyalty to them is first and foremost in his life. I had an issue with that. They are fine throwing him away. As someone not from that culture, it's hard to accept that kind of blind, non-yielding loyalty. To me, he owed something to himself and his true feelings for Cole so that made this whole story difficult for me.

    This is the start of a huge series and I honestly don't plan on continuing with it, although fans of this series rave about how good it is over and over again. I just don't think it's for me.

    But with that being said, I am dying to know why Cole's partner when he was a policeman went off the deep end and killed Cole's lover, himself, and seriously wounded Cole. I'm tempted to read the whole series just to find out that fact. I loved Cole and his pragmatic attitude toward life, Jae Min, and his career. He has a snarky wit that I loved and could empathize with. I love his attitude even when he is doing something stupid to endanger himself...again.

    And it should be noted that the narrator for this audiobook was phenomenal. There were Korean accents, Korean cross-dressers, and Cole's own flat snark that he delivered with absolute brilliance and perfection. I don't think there is a more perfect narrator for this series than Greg Tremblay.

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