"What lies beneath my veiled perfection is the ugly truth - my truth, my reality, my destiny."
Vivian Graham has an acceptance letter into Harvard, a badass tattoo, loyal friends, ties to marijuana, a penchant for Dunkin' Donuts, and her pesky V-card.
Everyday she takes the Red Line to her job at The Green Pot in Boston, while her friends enter the coveted, black iron gates to higher learning. The ramifications from a tragic accident have put her life on hold while time marches on for everyone around her.
After graduating from Harvard Law, Boston native Oliver Konrad moves to Portland to start his career and his life. Three years later, after a horrific discovery, he returns home to trade in his three-piece suit for leather work boots, and his suburban home for a condo in Cambridge.
All he brought back to the East Coast was an aversion to pillows, and secrets he keeps hidden behind a mysterious locked door. Oliver's days are predictable and his nights are lonely, until he meets Vivian on the subway. Her long raven hair, green eyes, and mile-long legs are achingly sexy, but the way she "innocently" fingers and licks her Boston Kreme doughnut can only be described in two words - complete torture.
When their paths cross at every turn, laughter is abundant, friendship is easy, and love is unintentional. However, their future seems improbable.
©2014 Jewel E Ann (P)2016 Jewel E Ann
Lovers of angst-filled, new adult romances will not want to miss this gem. Reminding me of one of my favorite writers, Colleen Hoover, Jewel E. Ann grabs your attention from the very beginning and keeps you enthralled throughout. I love stories like this where you know that there are some deep dark demons lurking in the past that are prohibiting the main characters from finding their HEA, but you don't know exactly why. Reminiscent of a romantic suspense title (without the action scenes), Idle Bloom kept me guessing throughout as I slowly was able to decipher clues as to the pasts that kept haunting the hero and the heroine and as to whether they would finally be able to exorcise these evils by finding a new meaning of life with each other. Moreover, the superb narration by Aubrey Vincent and Marcio Catalano make this a natural title to experience in audiobook format.
Vivian Graham is living a lie. Although she was accepted to Harvard, she has been deferring her admission for two years (a secret she is keeping from her parents). Instead, she spends her days working for a shop that sells marijuana for medical purposes, riding the T to and from all the while enjoying her favorite weakness (Dunkin’ Donuts). She is basically sitting idle in a world that continues to evolve around her, including watching her childhood best friend complete his own Harvard degree. What could possibly cause someone to defer her dreams while standing by and watching others conquer theirs?
Oliver Konrad has already completed his Harvard degree (a law degree), but has traded in the corporate perks of firm life to go back home and become a manual laborer working for his brother's landscaping business. Meanwhile he maintains no social life to speak of, instead preferring to lead a solitary life. What could possibly cause someone to quit a successful law career and give up everything they have worked hard for to return home and become a recluse?
Both Vivian and Oliver have resolved themselves to a life of loneliness, but when they meet there is something deeply reminiscent of themselves in the other. Fight though they try, they little by little find themselves opening up to one another. But can two scarred souls possibly find healing love in one another?
Aubrey Vincent and Marcio Catalano narrate Idle Bloom in the typical new adult fashion with Ms. Vincent narrating the chapters from Vivian's point of view and Mr. Catalano the ones from Oliver's. This style works well for this book as it adds a natural divider between the thoughts and experiences of these two individuals that we slowly learn about as the story takes its course.
Both Ms. Vincent and Mr. Catalano do a good job of providing distinguishable voices for each one of the various characters. I particularly enjoyed Ms. Vincent's portrayal of Vivian which I found directly on point. Sounding just like a young adult, and baring a certain sense of vulnerability all the while maintaining great strength in unimaginably adverse circumstances, I highly enjoyed Ms. Vincent's narration and felt like it added to the appeal and heart tugging strings of this emotional story.
All in all, I highly recommend Idle Bloom to romance listeners that enjoy new adult themes. Moreover, whether you're a fan of audiobooks or haven't yet tried one, this romance has a great narration making it a good choice to pick up in audiobook format.
Source: Review copy provided in exchange for an honest review.
I love being swept away by a new romance and thankfully Audible's ever growing Library means I get to indulge myself over and over again
This book packs so many feels into its storyline... secrets, heartache, passion, pain, heartbreaking dilemmas, friendship, dirty talk and hot sex, lust, forgiveness, patience, understanding, sorrow, humor, smooth banter and a love that transcends emotional turmoil and blooms into an unpredictable, indestructible and all consuming love.
Handsome 29 year old Oliver is afraid to look back or to look forward - he's just stuck in the here and now.. in grief and turmoil silently crying out from the earth shattering pain that he endured three years previously and is still haunting him now. Vivacious, fun-loving, beautiful and innocent 21 year old Vivian is also emotionally damaged and scarred but she's grasping onto life happy in the knowledge that she will never experience what so many other women experience in life because of her physical scars. She has insecurities but is happy with where her life is taking her - she feels safe to daydream about love and sex because she's sure they will never blossom into anything more... until she sees, then meets, Oliver and together they share their vulnerabilities, form an unbreakable connection, heal each other's heartbreak, learn to forgive and find happiness in each other's arms.
But it's not without its roller coaster of emotional events and dramas that will tug at your heartstrings at one point or another as the clues to Oliver's pain are slowly revealed and as Vivian tries desperately to help him overcome his loss. There's also Oliver's jealous side that morphs into rage when Vivian's male best friend is around because Oliver knows he comes with baggage and is no good for Vivian and yet he just can't stay away or let anyone else have her. It's a beautiful love story set amidst the emotional debris of a terrible tragedy that time is not healing - it's between two people who really get each other, empathize with each other, can't keep their hands off each other and deeply love one another. Told from both POV's and both narrators are great at bringing to life all the characters, emotions and heart of this amazing story.
Worth a credit? Oh 100% YES and I've liked other Jewel E Ann books before... but this one, well this one is simply unforgettable.
This is the second book I have read by this author and once again I was blown away! The intense emotion, humor, and shocking moments keep you wanting to find every spare moment you can to see what is going to happen next.
I will definitely be reading more of her books!!
I'd listen to Idle Bloom again mainly because I enjoyed the story. I also find that on a re-listen, I pick up a lot more details in the story than I did the first time around.
Idle Bloom made me think of the author's upcoming release, One because the characters also have some big issues to deal with from their past but the book overall is fun and hopeful.
Ms. Vincent and Mr. Catalano brought Viv and Oliver to life. Their animated narration was very entertaining. They made Viv and Oliver's banter feel real.
While there were plenty of tear-jerker moments, more than anything this book made me laugh. Oliver and Vivian's banter is pithy and the comic situations they get into are funny.
Idle Bloom by Jewel E. Ann is a new adult romance. This fabulous, moving story is told in dual POV. Both main characters are interesting and complex. They have an air of mystery about them, as you know something big has happened in the past. The past is revealed in bits and pieces as each is forced to deal with the horrific events that shaped their lives.
“Lost is a state of mind. You’ll find yourself when you acknowledge you’re exactly where you need to be in this moment.” --Vivian
Vivian Graham thinks of Oliver Konrad as her visual indulgence when she ogles him on the morning commute train through Boston. He and his handsome player-of-a-brother, Chance, are working as landscapers and handymen even though Oliver is meant to be doing something else with his career. Their great upbringing in a loving, open family has shaped them into kind, thoughtful and courteous men.
Vivian’s svelte body, emerald eyes, and long raven hair make her delicious to look at, however, she has no time for dating nonsense. She has plans, and those plans include getting her business degree from Harvard and then taking over the world of commerce. Even though her past has left her damaged, she remains hopeful and optimistic.
“I hope every day you take each other’s breath away. I hope every kiss feels like the first but ends like the last. I hope you always see the best versions of yourselves reflected in each other’s eyes. But mostly, I hope you wake up every morning next to each other because there’s no place in this world you’d rather be, instead of having nowhere else to go. May you always be each other’s home.” --Vivian
The secondary characters were fully developed and instrumental to the story. I adored Oliver’s parents and Vivian’s friends Alex and Sean. Vivian’s parents seemed like a throwback to the 1950s, but overall well-meaning parents. Vivian’s best friend from childhood, Kai, is the kind of self-centered person who sucks your battery dry. For the life of me, I cannot fathom why Vivian remained friends with him.
I loved Oliver and Vivian together. Their banter is pithy and funny. They’d be hilarious at a dinner party! Their chemistry is over the top. Was there angst? Yes. At times it was believable, and other times it seemed to require a bit of a stretch of the imagination. Once these two kids gave up the idea of “not dating”, their antics together are quintessential rom-com, and their intimacy is hot, hot, hot erotica.
The unconventional HEA is perfect for these two characters. Their lives will no longer be defined by their past. Their choices will not be defined by societal expectations. Their devotion to one another will defy gravity as they lift one another up over and over again.
The audiobook is fabulously narrated by Aubrey Vincent, Marcio Catalano
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