When wealthy businessman Zachariah Givens hires Hope's service, Hope initially mistakes Zack for his butler. Tired of being coddled and flattered because of his money, Zack is charmed by Hope's candor, not to mention her sexy voice, and keeps up the charade. As their friendship turns into passion, Zack is determined to have her, even if that means the unthinkable - marriage. But when Hope discovers his deception, Zack knows he must solve the mystery that haunts Hope's past in order to convince her that their futures lie together....
©2006 Christina Dodd; (P)2009 Brilliance Audio, Inc.
1 star for the crisis. 2 and 3 stars for other parts.
I really enjoyed the beginning. Hope works for a phone answering service. When rich guy Zach calls for his messages, she thinks he is the butler. They develop a neat relationship over the phone. When she meets him he continues to pretend he’s the butler. They fall in love. It was a fun story.
Then in the middle it dragged. It was repetitive thinking about each other and dragging out some pre-sex scenes. The con man part of the book was incomplete and not finished. See Spoiler below. I think the author should have spent time on that instead of doing the romantic filler in the middle.
Then the crisis: I hated it! I was furious. It ruined the book. Zach jumps to a wrong conclusion without even asking what was happening. And then he was mean. It was STUPID on his part. The author should have thought of something better.
The end was ok. I liked all the groveling Zach did. But I did not like the slapstick scene with a crime lord. It did not fit the tone of the book.
This felt like a regency/historical romance. Zach the rich aristocrat. Hope the feisty beautiful virgin orphan. It is set in contemporary Boston with limos. But change the limo to a carriage and you’ve got a regency.
A con man hired Hope to do some secretarial things for him. He embezzled money and the police arrested Hope. She got out on bail. That story was not finished. Did the con man admit she was innocent? What kind of evidence was brought up and used? How did she get proven innocent?
Natalie Ross is one of the best I have ever heard. I couldn’t believe how good her voice was for Zach - a man. She also did great for the rest of the story and characters. I’m trying to find other books that she narrates, but too many are by authors I don’t care for or books that I’ve already read. Darn, I want more of her.
Narrative mode: 3rd person.
Genre: contemporary romance.
The story line is interesting and funnier as the story goes on. Simple and ridiculous, but worth the credit. I like this narrator, and she puts enough personality into each character voice to make them distinctive.
yes, a fun series
Natalie is pretty good at differentiating between the characters. She speaks almost too slowly and a bit too breathily for me. I don't search out her reads, but I don't avoid her either. Part of my hestitation in giving her an unqualified "yeah" is probably the book itself...
…which I really liked, but that isn't to say I didn't have any problems with it. I'm reminded it was written about a decade ago - do all her heroines have to be fearful virgins? Which leads to too drawn out sex scenes. I like a little heat in a book - Ms. Dodd does it better in her later books. I do like the plot. A little far-fetched, also what i like in a book! The hero comes off as a surprisingly sympathetic jerk and the heroine is strong and quirky. All in all a fun read/listen.
I think it's kind of crappy that the second book, Almost Like Being In Love, is on Audible but not on Kindle. If I'd known that I would have never bought the first book. This did remind me a lot of the old movie Bells are Ringing with Dean Martin and Judy Holiday (I think that was her), It was still good since I so enjoyed that movie, as I did this book. I loved Zack and Hope, Madam Nainci, Aunt Cecily and the rest of the secondary characters. AND the sex was great too.
I want to know what happened in Hobart, Texas but I like to read along as the narrator tells the story so I've gone ahead and bought the third book and audio in the series.
LOL..I can READ a book but I can't just LISTEN to one, too boring.
I just Love the Allure of a Great Romance...a Pair of Rose Colored Glasses...some Fine Wine, and a Subscription to Audible...
I enjoyed "Just the Way You Are: Lost Texas Hearts, Book 1 by Christina Dodd. The story line was charming. Natalie Ross did a good job with the narration as well.
The environment created and partially centered around the answering service, where Hope works is creative, and very useful as a method of developing Hope's character and personality. This is where she meets Zack (via the phone line), and from there, the relationship begins.
I know that this sounds picky, but one habit this author seems to have is to use the word "for" as a literary conjunction to the point that I found it somewhat annoying. She uses it instead of "because" or "since", as in, "He felt guilty, FOR he knew better than to commit the crime."
Knowing this, however, I purchased the next book in the series in hopes that this habit will not be carried on throughout book II.
Yes, the story is basically unrealistic...But, sometimes, who cares...It's entertainment!
In my opinion, it is Credit Worthy!
The story was boring. I commute 1 to 1.5 hours and need an audible that will bring me in the story and keep me interested. I was stuck in traffic for 2 hours the other day and books on tape tend to keep me unstressed and I tend to enjoy sitting in traffic as long as I have something good to listen too. This was just so tedious to listen too. I just couldn't do it.
The characters were awful. Just down right boring.
Natalie Ross is a good narrator. I would buy another audible if she narrated it. The downfall was not the narration but the story.
I had to stop listening to this because I was so bored. So I don't know what scene except to say it shouldn't have been published at all.
A bit to repetitive, but fun and entertaining... Especially fun twist towards end!!! I enjoyed it and look forward to listening again! I grinned a lot ... good indication it's a good read!
i loved this book so much got the next two.... was really good kept me at the ready always wanted more time to listen great great great listen....
I just can't like this book. The narration is too slow. The heroine is too naive. The hero is too jaded and a little pathetic!! The story is too unbelievable!! Very sorry I wasted my credits on this audio book.
This is my first Christina Dodd novel, and I was pleasantly surprised! It starts kind of slow but draws you in nicely. Great character development, and CD definitely knows how to write a male lead! Aside from one slightly "far-fetched" plot line to rescue the female lead toward the end of the story, I thoroughly enjoyed this book and look forward to the next in the series.
BTW, Natalie Ross is also an excellent narrator!
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