Douglas Ashton is the cold and unfeeling owner of the gothic Victorian Mansion, Sommersgate House. Julia Fairfax is his stubborn American sister-in-law. After tragedy strikes, Douglas and Julia are forced to live together at Sommersgate and raise their newly orphaned nieces and nephew.
Douglas has no desire to raise his dead sister's children, nor does he want the distraction of the tempting Julia living under his roof. Julia is struggling with grief and trying to make a go in a new country without much help from impossibly handsome, but even more impossibly remote Douglas. Not to mention, she has to deal with the active hostility of Douglas's frosty, Attila-the-Hun-in-a-skirt mother, Monique. Douglas decides the best way to give the children what they need, get his mother to behave, and give himself what he wants is to marry Julia. When he tells her (yes, tells her) she will be his wife, Julia thinks Douglas is (probably) insane. And anyway, she's decided if she ever has another husband (since the last one wasn't so great), he was going to be short, balding, have a paunch, and worship the ground she walks on (none of these characteristics define Douglas in the slightest).
One more thing, Sommersgate House is haunted by the ghosts of the man who built the house and the woman who was the love of his life. They both died mysteriously at Sommersgate months after it was finished. When they did, a curse settled on the house, making it seem strangely alive. And the only way for the beautiful but frightening house to rid itself of this curse is for its owner to find true love.
©2016 Kristen Ashley (P)2016 Audible, Inc.
I've always had a fondness for the story. It's not a work of fine literature, but it's a darn fun read. So I looked forward to the Audible version, as I have a long daily commute, and am always looking for good books to listen to during my drive. However, the narrator ruined this book for me. Why, oh why, when most of the characters in the book are English, would you have an American narrator who can't do a decent accent to save her life??? And when she has to voice the English hero....words cannot describe how bad it is! I'm so disappointed I could just weep.
Douglas is quite a dashing Bond-type figure.
English accents, as mentioned above, are terrible. Her "voice" for the hero....unspeakably bad.
I can't even begin to think about this until I mourn this audio for a few days.
Please don't let all of the books in this series be narrated by the same person, as Ms. Ashley has done before. I can't even bear to think about it, as this series is a regular re-read for me.
Dang it, I hate to have to give KA a less than stellar review but, unfortunately, the shoe fits. This ghost series just wasn't her forte. Both the first two stories could have been told just as easily w/o the ghosts, at all. As a matter of fact, I think trying to fit the ghosts into the story took away from the rest of the story. These stories are so shallow compared to her other series that, for the first time ever, I'm not going to download one of her books. I have been having KA withdrawals and I hope a new book on another of her series is released soon.
As for the narration, Ms Craden has no gift with accents but if you ignore the fact that most of the characters are supposed to be born and raised English, you can make it through the story.
-V from Kansas
This story is more about broken people getting put back together and becoming a family, which adds a certain amount of sweetness to it. Of course there's romance, but that's not all there is, and I like that.
She can do a passable heroine voice and that's it. What she can't do is accents or male characters. It just irritates me to no end that I'll have to suffer through her narration every time I want to listen to these books.
So good I couldn't put it down but didn't want to finish! As in all Ms. Ashley's books, I loved all the characters. I also enjoyed the new setting, England, in this book.
I love this book! Although to be fair I love everything Kristen Ashley! the narrator did such a wonderful job with the male voice, that I don't think I've heard a better performance. It made everything even better than it would have already been I can't wait to listen to the next book
Loved the story as I always do with KA's books. It amazes me how KA brings her stories to life and you never feel like you are reading the same story with different characters. Each series that she writes is different than the next. Love KA books.
Narration was bad for Douglas. I almost stopped listening so many times. The narrator did well with other female voices bringing in differences from one to another but I had a real challenge with listening to Douglas alone and then in hearing a difference from one male to another. I was hoping it would not be the same narrator for the entire series but it is. May not be listening to the other books in the series as a result of this..... I am not sure if I can take her tone as a male with another book.
Loved the story line, I felt it was very fulfilling. The story kept me guessing what the different outcomes comes could be. I sped the narration up to 1.25 and the narration worked for me. Thus far I have not been disappointed in the KA books that I have read. On to the next!
At first I had a difficult time getting into this book... it may have been for reason not at all involving the read but, once I really gave it a chance... I absolutely couldn't put it down... it was beautifully written and wonderfully told.
Audiobook Addict, yep that is me. There is a group of us! Check us out on FB. >:-)
Ok so I liked book one but I enjoyed book two just a little bit more.
The dynamic in which these characters come together is sad and heartbreaking. But also so very needed for all of them to heal.
The children needed a home, and the house needed a family. Douglas needed love and family who cared. And Julia needed to heal.
I didn't not like Douglas in the beginning I would call it cautious. I wondered why he was so stand offish and you learn why that is and your heart goes out to him.
I think I felt most for Julia just because she cared her grief on the outside and it was hard for her to be brave. Plus her past is kind of sad but for the most part she doesn't or I should say tries really hard to put it in the past but sometimes the past is just so painful it stays with you for a lot longer then you wish it would.
I love the interaction between the staff and the children, just all of it is refreshing, I have read a lot of books with kids but I like when they are so intertwined in the story that you couldn't image it without them.
Last but not least having a glimpse into Douglas and Julia falling in love was precious and I am so glad I listened to this audio, Abby Craden does a great job with this narration. I enjoyed all her character voice. Worth the credit for sure.
*You don't have to like my review but its 100% my opinion, and I am allowed to have it.*
"Lovely Classic KA"
Wow read this on Kindle years ago, loved it then , pure KA alpha goodness,
Wonderful to listen too !
epilogue excellent as usual.
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