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Just for Now: Escape to New Zealand, Book Three | [Rosalind James]

Just for Now: Escape to New Zealand, Book Three

There's no place like home... For teacher Jenna McKnight, nothing spells "heartbreak" like finding her husband with somebody else--in her bed. It's clearly time to reinvent herself. A new body, a new city, and a new job later, she's done just that. The beautiful Auckland villa isn't really her home, though. Finn Douglas and his kids aren't really her family, however much she wishes they were. And playing house can be a dangerous game. Rugby star Finn Douglas is just looking for a temporary nanny and housekeeper. Not a girlfriend, and definitely not a wife. He can't resist Jenna's cooking, it's true. Who knew he'd have so much trouble resisting her? He wants to do what's right for his kids. But waiting is so hard... Note: This romance, like New Zealand, contains a bit of steam. If that isn't your cuppa, maybe visit some other country... er, audiobook.
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Publisher's Summary

There's no place like home...

For teacher Jenna McKnight, nothing spells "heartbreak" like finding her husband with somebody else--in her bed. It's clearly time to reinvent herself. A new body, a new city, and a new job later, she's done just that. The beautiful Auckland villa isn't really her home, though. Finn Douglas and his kids aren't really her family, however much she wishes they were. And playing house can be a dangerous game.

Rugby star Finn Douglas is just looking for a temporary nanny and housekeeper. Not a girlfriend, and definitely not a wife. He can't resist Jenna's cooking, it's true. Who knew he'd have so much trouble resisting her? He wants to do what's right for his kids. But waiting is so hard...

Note: This romance, like New Zealand, contains a bit of steam. If that isn't your cuppa, maybe visit some other country... er, audiobook.

©2012 Rosalind James (P)2014 Rosalind James

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  •  
    Ecray 08-08-14
    Ecray 08-08-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Right as..."

    I like to listen to audio books while mowing the lawn, driving long distances or cleaning my house. I have listened to many audio books and have even stopped a few when they became an unbearable shadow of the book. Just for Now: Escape to New Zealand has a great narrator, Claire Bocking, and her reading gives more life to the book than I anticipated. If you are new to audio books, here are a few points that make Claire such a great fit. First of all, ever character sounds believable. She has an advantage reading Jenna but she does an equally wonderful job reading Finn’s character. Secondly, Claire has great diction and keeps the novel flowing. Lastly, who wants to listen to a bad impersonation that takes away from the story? Unfortunately, there are many out there that do just that.

    As for the actual novel, Just for Now: Escape to New Zealand book 3 may be my favorite. Since I hope that James writes many more, this book sits tentatively at the top with a little wiggle room for future novels to claim #1. I really appreciated the depth the characters developed through action and dialogue. I come across a fair amount of books that often lack character development. No worries on that note when you read one of James’ novels. The age-old struggle of finding love among the balancing act of life with children makes Jenna and Finn a wonderful love story. The one criticism I would have is regarding Jenna and it’s a personality conflict on my part. I really don’t think that I could be around someone who knew as much as Jenna and not feel resentment that she was such a nice person. I guess that reflects poorly on me but I kept thinking, “I would have blown up over that” or “WOW! She is crazy understanding!” I still liked her character overall and overlooked her ‘goody two-shoes’ approach to life. :)

    Overall, the audio book for Just for Now: Escape to New Zealand book 3 is well worth the money and your time!

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rhonda Casselberry, FL, United States 09-04-14
    Rhonda Casselberry, FL, United States 09-04-14 Member Since 2011
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    "Favorite so far"

    Wish all the books were available on audible. I liked this by just finding it by a fluke. PLEASE get the rest and the series she has written. The narrator is excellent
    .

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Deor 08-02-14
    Deor 08-02-14
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    "Just for now is a great listen"

    First, I would like to say Claire Bocking does an excellent job. Her voice is very clear and very likeable. She does an excellent job of switching from reading from book to book so the characters have a unique personality and sound to them. Everyone sounds realistic, and with a romance like this that might be even more important to be able to hear the chemistry in the voices.

    I have a personal theory when it comes to romance books that depending on where you are in life (married, single, divorced, parent, non-parent, etc) or your personality different books and characters will appeal to you in specific ways and to different degrees. Its one of the things that makes rereading or relistening to a book so much fun. The female protagonist Jenna is a very maternal and nurturing sort of woman, very likeable and intelligent (which I love). Even though I would normally gravitate towards a different kind of female protagonist, I found this book to be as infectious as the previous books and hard to stop listening and I found Jenna to be a very enjoyable character to follow and to root for. I respect her and I think she is one of those characters the more I think about her is one you can learn from. Finn is likeable and believable, and not too perfect but everything you could hope for in a romantic lead. I love how Rosalind James focuses on relationships-romantic, friendships, family. I am also coming to realize how much James does not gravitate towards the recent literary trend of consumerism porn where the book is littered with expensive labels and just enjoy the financial security and opportunities in a relaxed way just as Finn does.

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Lolli 07-30-14
    Lolli 07-30-14 Member Since 2014
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    "Rugby, Drama, and a Happy Ending"
    What did you love best about Just for Now?

    Claire Bocking is a wonderful voice actress. The characters are distinct and her accents are spot on. I also loved the realness of the characters. The author writes well enough to where you can empathize with them.


    Have you listened to any of Claire Bocking’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    I've listened to Just This Once and Just Good Friends, both written by Rosalind James. Bocking does a fantastic performance in those as well.


    Any additional comments?

    I appreciated that the characters weren't perfect. Finn and Jenna sometimes said the wrong things and held insecurities that I could relate to (Jenna mostly, seeing as I don't have kids, I'm not a man, and I'm not a rugby player). The descriptions of the area and the culture make you feel like you've been there and if you went back, you'd never want to leave. I read/listen to romance novels all the time and the Escape to New Zealand books always keep me coming back for a re-read.

    This is the first book I read in the series because I randomly saw the ebook version on sale and it had a cupcake on the cover (I read it out of order). Cupcakes aside, it made me want to go back and read them all (in order this time). I was extremely excited when I heard the audio book was coming out because Bocking is superb. She has a lovely voice, singing and speaking.

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MJG ID, United States 07-29-14
    MJG ID, United States 07-29-14

    Pacific Northwest Gardener

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    "ANOTHER "TRY" FOR "ESCAPE TO NEW ZEALAND""

    I have read all of Rosalind James' "Escape to New Zealand" series on Kindle and absolutely adore hearing them read by the talented Claire Bocking. As I've said in my other reviews, these stories have introduced me to a country I now want to visit (hubby said YES!) and to a sport I knew nothing about but now follow as a true fan (even though I've never followed any sport before ...ever.)

    I think this is my favorite out of all the books (so far.) Jenna has been badly burned in her marriage, when all she wanted in life was a secure home and family and a bunch of kids. She sure didn't have it growing up or with her soon-to-be ex-husband.

    She had taken some time off as a teacher to travel a bit and take some odd jobs until she sorts her life out and figures out her next step. Thus, she applies as a housekeeper and nanny for Finn Douglas and his two kids. (Rugby players DO travel a lot and it's just a short-term thing.) The employment interview scene is too funny for words and I'll not spoil it for you. Let's just say it doesn't go well. But everything turns out okay in the end and Jenna begins her employment ... with a massively built, hunky, desirable rugby player. They do try to not be attracted to each other ... for the kids' sake. But then what kind of a romance novel would we have? I won't give any more away. It is a great story told with a lot of care. Bring tissues.

    I do believe you will laugh and cry and swoon. As Rosalind says .. just like New Zealand, there is a bit of steam here, so if that's not your cuppa ... try another country ... er, book.

    And I DO recommend getting the book or Kindle edition too ... for a marvelous glossary of Kiwi terms (words and phrases which are in the books and are fascinating!) and for a whole bunch of Jenna's (Rosalind's) recipes. I've tried a number of them and they are fabulous.

    [“I received a free copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own."] MJG

    4 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Coooper Wasilla, AK, United States 08-12-14
    Coooper Wasilla, AK, United States 08-12-14 Member Since 2009
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    "LIKED THAT THIS WAS A BIT DIFFERENT"

    I liked that this story was a bit different from the first two, still very enjoyable and still CB does an amazing job. My hope is that Audible snags as many of the Escape to New Zealand series as RJ writes and hope my vacation is not over yet.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J. Carmichael Jacksonville, FL 08-11-14
    J. Carmichael Jacksonville, FL 08-11-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Wow! Loved it!"
    Would you listen to Just for Now again? Why?

    This is the first time I have ever listened to an audio book. I was fortunate to receive a free advanced copy to review and give my honest opinion. I was not compensated for this review. I have read all of Rosalind James' books and loved each and every one! I decided to try this as my first audio book and was so happy that I did. I typically don't read books more than once but would actually read and listen to this again and again! I really loved the story line and loved listening to Claire Bocking reading to me. I wasn't sure how the voices of Finn would translate as well as how the love scenes would come across. I was pleasantly surprised. I definitely will listen to other Rosalind James' books in the future.


    What other book might you compare Just for Now to and why?

    This book is the third book in her Escape to New Zealand. All of them are must reads (or listen). I love the characters in all of the books and the way each character is described. I'm ready to go on a trip to New Zealand!


    What about Claire Bocking’s performance did you like?

    I loved Claire's voice and the voices she used for the other characters. She definitely adds a great deal to the story.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I loved when Finn realized that he was in love with Jenna (I'm a sucker for a good romance).


    Any additional comments?

    So glad that I took a chance with this book in particular to try an audio book. I look forward to hearing more of the Escape to New Zealand stories!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    M. Stephens Montana, US 08-06-14
    M. Stephens Montana, US 08-06-14 Member Since 2013
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    "Another wonderful book from Rosalind James!"
    Any additional comments?

    As with the first two books, my favorite aspect of this book was, by far, the setting. Rosalind James does an amazing job describing New Zealand - both in landscape and in culture. Every time I read/listen to one of the "Escape to New Zealand" books, I want to visit. I've listened to the first two books several times.

    That being said, this one wasn't my favorite. I loved the characters and the progression of their relationship;, and the tension of their first meeting lead to a charming period of adjustment, but the chaos and stress of some of the situations with the kids was a bit much for me. While very realistic, it did detract a little bit from the story (probably because I don't have kids myself).

    As usual, Clair Bocking's narration was excellent. She has a very distinctive voice for each character and does a great job with both the characters' emotions and their accents, making it easy to get lost in the story rather than feeling "read to."

    All in all, still a delightful read/listen. Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    EstherF 08-04-14
    EstherF 08-04-14
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Sizzling HOT! HOT! HOT!"
    What did you love best about Just for Now?

    We start the book where the heroine, Jenna, has just recently left a marriage that crumbled and she picked up the pieces and moved on to reinvent herself. I admire that she drew up the strength to break from what would have been a very depressing situation and she used it catapult herself forward to heal and makes some positive changes for herself. Those are always admirable qualities in any heroine, I believe.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of Just for Now?

    When Finn is gone for six weeks on an extended tour, and Jenna, who is pregnant and feeling very ill is handling a very emotionally wrought little girl having a meltdown, and all of them start yelling at each other. In the end, Jenna manages to calm everyone down and put everyone on a "time out" for a while and then really brings peace back to the family when she reminds the children how much their daddy loves them and misses them, and they can write to him about their difficult day. It ends on a happier note with a phone call from daddy and everyone calms down.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    The reunion scene at the end, of course. Finn really comes through for Jenna in a big way and shows her how much he (and the children) love her and want her in their lives.


    Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

    I loved the Maori lullaby sung by the narrator. It was so beautiful! She really brought to life the tender emotions of a little boy missing his daddy.


    Any additional comments?

    This book, Just for Now (Audio format), is Book 3 in a series called Escape To New Zealand. If you are reading this, you have discovered one of my favorite authors of romance. Ms.James is a wonderful story-teller and weaves amazing imagery and the flavor of the local environment into her tales. She had me hooked from the very first Escape to New Zealand story I read. I am so impressed with the details she writes into the background, scenery, the characters, everything really. This is my first audio book, but I had read the book in Kindle format previously.

    We start the book where the heroine, Jenna, has just recently left a marriage that crumbled and she picked up the pieces and moved on to reinvent herself. I admire that she drew up the strength to break from what would have been a very depressing situation and she used it catapult herself forward to heal and makes some positive changes for herself. Those are always admirable qualities in any heroine, I believe.

    Then we meet Finn, who is a single dad, who also happens to be a very busy professional sportsman on the All Blacks rugby team, and he has some definite ideas about what a nanny should and shouldn't look like. Luckily Jenna is quick to put him at ease that she neither is interested in his status and fame, nor is she even interested in him as a man. Not yet anyway. Finn's kids are just adorable

    The descriptions of the geography and the New Zealand, in general are meticulous and compelling. All the imagery of such a beautiful country, and the mannerisms and local cultural references of the locals were fascinating. The author includes a helpful glossary of New Zealand local lingo and unique cultural references to help the reader connect to the story and the characters more deeply.

    I fell in love with the characters and the setting of the book immediately. The characters were absolutely genuinely heartwarming and lovely to read about, very realistically drawn and compelling the reader to cheer them on.

    I felt that the characters were strong and had complex emotions and back-stories that were interesting. Jenna is sweet yet almost too perfect, given that she was raised in a broken home with an emotionally abusive and absent mother. You would think she would still have more lingering baggage to deal with, but she is very well adjusted, despite her background. She's a bit naïve, yet she overcame many obstacles and a bad marriage to go out and reinvent herself and become a strong and independent woman.

    Finn is everything us women love in a good hero: strong, sexy, emotionally sensitive but not afraid to take a strong stand for his convictions. He's not a classically handsome guy, but ruggedly good-looking and charming, yet not bad on the eyes. He's a leader and well-respected by his teammates and family. I would like to have learned more about Finn's background and where he came from.

    The audio format was done very well by Claire Bocking. She created different voices for all the characters, and her articulation of the New Zealand speech patterns and lingo were impeccable. I can't say perfect, as I'm not from there, but she's pretty convincing to me! She does a great job going back and forth between the voices, Her voice quality is excellent. I thought her acting showed a good varied range of emotions. I would like to have heard more range of emotions with her reading of Finn's dialogue, but that's just me. I found it a bit awkward to listen to the sensual scenes, as this feels way more intimate to me than just reading them in my head. I'm just getting used to the format though. Reading these scenes is way different than hearing them! I loved the Maori lullaby sung by the narrator. It was so beautiful! She really brought to life the tender emotions of a little boy missing his daddy.

    All in all, this book is so well written and read aloud. There are things that could be improved upon, but I can't really think of anything major. The Hero and Heroine together are adorable. I loved how they slowly learned to trust each other and put aside their baggage from the past mistakes made. They had slow start but pretty quickly you see the attraction growing between them, and this was not an instant HEA. They had to work through some tough issues to get there. Well done, Rosalind and Claire!

    I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    L Kowalewski 08-04-14
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    "Perfect"
    Would you listen to Just for Now again? Why?

    Yes!


    Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

    Yes!


    Any additional comments?

    This is my favorite book in the New Zealand series and the audio made me love it even more! I love the story of Finn & Jenna. It begins with somewhat of a dislike for one another and builds into a friendship, which then builds into a romance. I love the kids in the book and Claire Bocking brings such joy & entertainment to the characters. The enthusiasm that she has with them is so much fun! I do have to say that hearing Finn's words read by someone still doesn't do it justice as to what I imagine in my head. But it was well done!This will definitely be a book that I listen to many times! "I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.”

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
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