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Shoppermom

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  • 117
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  • Nine Line

  • By: Zachary J. Kitchen
  • Narrated by: Kelli White
  • Length: 9 hrs and 18 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 9
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars 9

When Nick Patterson signed up for the Navy reserves, he just wanted some money for medical school. He never imagined he’d someday find himself fighting for life and limb in the sands of Iraq. Frustrated by a military bureaucracy he cannot begin to understand and an increasingly pointless war, he doubts why he is there and what he is doing.  When the plucky and idealistic MEDIVAC pilot Samantha Brown crashes into his life, he sees another side to the war. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Sum greater than the parts

  • By Shoppermom on 03-22-19

Sum greater than the parts

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-22-19

I gave the performance and the story both four stars but the book overall five stars--something I've never done before. I think it's because I was genuinely grateful to have found such a good book, one that I was sorry to say good-bye to when I reached the end (which for the record, was a bit too abrupt). The blurb next to the title doesn't really summarize the story well in that it presents the book primarily as a romance with the characters' main choices being whether or not to follow their romantic interests. I found the book to be more an honest account of what it means to be at war during a period when one's country has forgotten the military. Nick and Sam are the two main characters, but they spend far more of the story apart than together, and neither one makes decisions incumbent on the other. Instead, they are both doing all they can to do their respective jobs honorably and well in the midst of bureaucratic idiocy, harsh conditions, and conflicting pulls on their loyalty. The author allows us to know Nick a little more personally, and his depictions of the medical horrors that arise during our current military involvements are heart-wrenching and graphic. Sam is a dedicated and professional Marine to her core, and although her love for Nick and the Iraqi boy she takes responsibility for triumph in the end, we understand her personal motivations a bit less. The narration was well-done, and I subtracted one star only because of a few odd pronunciations of American words. I received a copy at my request of this audiobook from the publisher, and I'm very grateful to have had the chance to listen. As another reviewer noted, this story will stick with me for a while, and I will probably look for more by the author in the future.

  • Trade Me

  • Cyclone, Book 1
  • By: Courtney Milan
  • Narrated by: Xe Sands, Sean Crisden
  • Length: 7 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 340
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 314
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 314

Tina Chen just wants a degree and a job, so her parents never have to worry about making rent again. She has no time for Blake Reynolds, the sexy billionaire who stands to inherit Cyclone Systems. But when he makes an offhand comment about what it means to be poor, she loses her cool and tells him he couldn't last a month living her life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Heart-warming.

  • By ReadingMad100 on 08-17-18

Extraordinary

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-09-19

This is nothing like an historical romance, if that's how you know Courtney Milan. Trade Me is filled with raw, contemporary issues, and there is nothing refined about it. Instead, the reader/listener is confronted with harsh immigration realities, obnoxious poverty, and stress induced eating disorders and drug use. And yet the love story is lyrical, tender, and beautiful. Blake and Tina come from drastically different worlds, but their connection is electric and completely believable. Often, even when I'm enjoying a story, I get impatient to get to the ending, but I wanted Trade Me to go on forever and was so sorry to reach the end. While this was a stand-alone with a beautifully complete ending, I obviously I have no alternative but to move on to Hold Me. And for those few of you out there who like me, have found Xe Sands' narration annoying, my irritation vanished after just a few chapters, something that's never happened with a Kristan Higgins book.

  • Walk of Shame

  • By: Lauren Layne
  • Narrated by: Susannah Jones, Joe Arden
  • Length: 6 hrs and 10 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 705
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 657
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 657

Pampered heiress Georgianna Watkins has a party-girl image to maintain, but all the shopping and clubbing is starting to feel a little bit hollow - and a whole lot lonely. Though Georgie would never admit it, the highlights of her week are the mornings when she comes home at the same time as her uptight, workaholic neighbor is leaving to hit the gym and put in a long day at the office. Teasing him is the most fun Georgie's had in years - and the fuel for all her naughtiest daydreams.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Enchanting

  • By Misty on 04-20-17

Ridiculously delightful

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-02-19

Once again Ms. Layne delivers a perfectly crafted dish of literary ice cream. A bit shorter than many of her other stories, it is nonetheless satisfying and uplifting. Georgie wants to have fun and spread sunshine while Andrew keeps his nose to the grindstone and considers the social butterfly's existence ridiculous. But the heart wants what the hearts wants, and fortunately, their other parts are equally compatible:) I turn to Ms. Layne when life seems too dreary to endure, and she almost never disappoints. Walk of Shame was no exception. Enjoy!

  • Forever Right Now

  • By: Emma Scott
  • Narrated by: Greg Tremblay, Caitlin Kelly
  • Length: 10 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 43
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars 41
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 42

Darlene Montgomery has been to hell and back...more than once. After a stint in jail for drug possession, she is finally clean and ready to start over. Yet another failed relationship is just the motivation she needs to move from New York to San Francisco with the hopes of resurrecting her dance career and discovering that she is more than the sum of her rap sheet. As Darlene struggles in her new city, the last thing she wants is to become entangled with her handsome - but cranky - neighbor and his adorable little girl....

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Emma Scott never fails to engage my heart

  • By Shoppermom on 02-12-19

Emma Scott never fails to engage my heart

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-12-19

Every time I start an Emma Scott book, I'm immediately pulled into the story and fully invested in the characters. Forever right now was no exception. Darlene and Sawyer are so genuine; their hopes and fears make perfect sense, and I as the reader/listener was desperate for a path to open up that they could traverse it together. Thank you, Ms. Scott. Your books are a gift, and your characters are vivid, passionate, and memorable. The narration was perfect. I'm glad this is a title I own because I know I'll return to it again with pleasure.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Counting on You

  • Amarillo Sour, Book 1
  • By: Laura Chapman
  • Narrated by: Rebecca Hansen
  • Length: 7 hrs and 35 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 22

Math teacher Haleigh Parde has no desire to change her single status until she receives an invitation to her high school reunion. With her ex spreading rumors, she needs a date and fast. Haleigh finds herself meeting a blind date at a neighborhood bar called Amarillo Sour. After watching Haleigh crash and burn, app developer Ian Henning makes her a proposition. If she'll provide honest feedback on his new dating app, he'll guarantee her a date to knock the socks off her former classmates.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Simple, Perfect Love

  • By Amazon Customer on 03-09-19

Two awkward people find love

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
3 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-12-19

Numbers are their thing: Haleigh is a high school math teacher, and Ian is an app developer who constantly crunches his data. Neither one has managed to work love into their nerdish life. But the bar Amarillo Sour seems destined to be a place where magic happens. (I write that not because I found it to be particularly magical, but because it's titled Book 1 - you can't fool this nerd!) The romance was sweet, and having finished it more than a week ago, I can still remember most of the details and retain fondness for the characters, a not-all-that-frequent occurrence, unfortunately. But I also retain some vague irritations: Haleigh claims to know NOTHING about love and courtship, yet she is supposedly surrounded by high schoolers all day long. No place is romance more rampant than in a high school! And at the beginning of the story her work load takes up all her time, but by the end, she has all the time in the world to spend at Amarillo Sour, no matter what day of the week it is. Her best friend, Nina, behaves obnoxiously throughout most of the book, and Haleigh's shrugging it off is characteristic of her general ditzy approach to most things in her life. Ian is smart and kind, but I thought his one, frustrated put-down of Haleigh right before they finally reconcile was not in line with the overall tone of their relationship. The narration was fine, although I personally prefer a slightly lower-pitched voice. I requested and received a complimentary copy of this audiobook from the author and am grateful for the introduction to her work.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Ryker

  • Cold Fury Hockey Series #4
  • By: Sawyer Bennett
  • Narrated by: Cris Dukehart, Graham Halstead
  • Length: 7 hrs and 22 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 515
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 495
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 494

The stakes have never been higher for Carolina Cold Fury goalie Ryker Evans. With his contract running out, he's got a year left to prove that he's still at the top of his game. And since his wife left him, Ryker has been balancing life as a pro hockey star and a single parent to two daughters. Management is waiting for him to screw up. The fans are ready to pounce. Everybody's taking dirty shots - except for the fiery redhead whose faith in Ryker gives him a fresh start.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • another great by Sawyer Bennett

  • By Rebecca on 11-16-15

This time TWO Cold Fury Team figures find love

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
5 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-03-19

I've loved all the Cold Fury books, and I try to pace myself to make sure they last a while. I liked Ryker, but it was probably my least favorite of the series. For whatever reason, I found it less easy to instantly relate to Ryker and Gray, and I found the sex scenes a little too frequent and over-the-top. Tiny, insignificant details also niggled at me: if Gray had been such a phenomenal athlete, why was she satisfied now with a gentle yoga workout? And then there was the dénouement: I thought Gray was too quick to make the decision she did. But the bracing excitement of hockey was there, as was the great camaraderie of the team. And in the end, the love between Ryker and Gray proved true and beautiful. I've already put the next book in my queue.

  • Like the Wind

  • By: J. Bengtsson
  • Narrated by: Callie Dalton, Zachary Webber
  • Length: 9 hrs and 23 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,694
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,597
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,600

When a letter from his supposedly deceased mother finds its way into his hands, life changes in an instant for international pop star Bodhi Beckett. Reeling from the deception of those closest to him, Bodhi spirals out of control and is sent to a secluded mansion in the coastal mountains of Southern California for some rest and relaxation. But the retreat proves to be anything but relaxing when a raging wildfire sets the landscape around him ablaze. While escaping the flames, Bodhi rescues Breeze, a quirky, pet-loving woman, and together the two fight their way to safety. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Ahhh-amazing

  • By Christy Almeida on 01-16-19

Still good, but not CAKE

Overall
3 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-02-19

I couldn't wait to listen to Ms. Bengtsson's latest title, but when I was done, I had the feeling that the author couldn't wait to get this story out to the world. As in, she didn't wait and take the time to maybe do her best work. Like the Wind was a nice contemporary romance, once again about a troubled male rock star and a regular, non-celebrity young woman suddenly thrown into his crazy world. It lacked the character depth of CAKE, however, and many life-altering conversations and/or internal decisions were contradicted and tossed aside a few pages later. Plot diversions were thrown in and then left unresolved (what happened to Breeze's friend who had overdosed? Oh right, he'll probably reappear in a subsequent book). It had a nice (there's that word again) happily ever after, but by the last page, I think Bhodhi and Breeze had know each other all of a week. Grammatical errors were also annoying (it's "to Breeze and ME," not "to Breeze and I"), and again, maybe they were there in the CAKE books, but they don't stand out in my memory. I know I will read the CAKE series again (I even purchased the exorbitantly priced paperbacks though I "own" the audio versions), but I don't think I'll ever rush to revisit Like the Wind. If it's a listener's first experience with Ms. Bengtsson, then it will probably be enjoyed, but know that she has better books out there.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • What the Dog Ate

  • By: Jackie Bouchard
  • Narrated by: Aisling Gray
  • Length: 9 hrs and 47 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 26

Maggie Baxter, a practical, rule-following accountant, discovers that her husband of 17 years is cheating on her. All her meticulous life plans are crushed. When he leaves her for the other woman, Maggie and her the-world-is-my-smorgasbord chocolate lab, Kona, are left to put their lives back together. As Maggie begins to develop a Plan B for her life, she decides to be more like Kona. No, she's not going to sniff crotches and eat everything that isn't nailed down; rather she'll try to approach life with more ball-chasing abandon.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • AWESOMENESS!

  • By Victoria Haugen on 02-16-19

Second chances with canine inspiration

Overall
4 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-28-19

Maggie was "doggedly" following a career track with her eye on the long-term prize and nothing else. So fate sent her wake-up call that resulted in a complete re-evaluation of everything and everyone she had previously taken for granted. Among other changes, she decided to consider her options with a "what would Kona [her dog] do?" This was one of several parts of the story where I found myself skeptical. I have a dog I adore, and I understand the need to sometimes look at problems from a new perspective, but I don't think I'm going to turn to him for tactical guidance. Philosophical maybe, (he's usually pretty good at ferreting out the good guys from the bad and insisting on regular meals and sleep), but not tactical. The story was also a bit too long; I felt about at least a quarter of it could have been edited out. At one point I thought: "I really don't want to hear about the Kong or smoothies one more time." In the end, one of those two turned out to be important, plot wise, but they nevertheless were too often mentioned. All that said, What the Dog Ate was an enjoyable story with a rewarding HEA. Ms. Bouchard has some great fans who loved this book, and I'm happy they found such pleasure. I want to like and empathize with the protagonist from the get-go, and it took me a bit too long to warm up to Maggie. Another go-round with editing could make it a delightully fun read (or listen). I received a complimentary copy of this audiobook from the narrator, who did a great job.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Of Paupers and Peers

  • By: Sheri Cobb South
  • Narrated by: Stevie Zimmerman
  • Length: 6 hrs and 5 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 60
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 56
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 56

Margaret Darrington is no stranger to genteel poverty herself, since the death of her father has left her in charge of her two younger siblings and feather-brained aunt. But Margaret has a plan: To salvage the family's finances, she has only to put her beautiful younger sister, Amanda, in the way of marrying a wealthy man - perhaps the new Duke of Montford, who is expected to arrive any day. 

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Delightfully sweet

  • By Shilo on 01-26-19

A wonderfully fun tale

Overall
5 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-28-19

I read and listen to a LOT of romance. This was one of the few where it wasn't blatantly obvious in the first pages who were going go be the hero and heroine. Instead, the story unfurled a bit like a Shakespearean comedy: mistaken identities, missed opportunities, and humor in abundance. At the same time, it was a finely crafted tale of a well-heeled but poorly funded aristocratic family trying to do whatever they honorably could to survive and the story of a poorly-heeled but golden-to-the-core young man suddenly able to shape his own future and capture his true love's heart. I was belatedly pruning last summer's raspberry patch before the next batch of snow while listening to parts of the book, and I laughed out loud at some of the antics. Current day politically correct critics will roar at minor references to Romani, but taken in historical context, the terminology and prejudices mentioned are apt and in no way disrespectful. I received a complimentary copy of this audiobook from the author, and I'm grateful for the opportunity it gave me to get acquainted with a new-to-me writer. I've checked my "holdings" and have happily discovered that I already digitally own at least two more of her books, so more delight awaits. It wasn't a perfect 5, in that I probably won't feel compelled to revisit Of Paupers and Peers anytime in the near future, but I've rounded up because of the overall pleasure it delivered.

  • Cold Hearted

  • By: Winter Renshaw
  • Narrated by: Yvonne Syn, Douglas Berger
  • Length: 6 hrs and 33 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 77
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 70
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 70

Rhett Carson was as cold as the ice on which he skated. He was as calloused as the hands that shot the goals that won world championships. He was also damaged. And broken. And he didn't know it, but I knew all about him...and his unfortunate connection with my estranged older brother. I knew why he was so bitter and angry. I knew why he was so cold hearted. But I didn't know why I let myself fall in love with him. And I didn't know why I couldn't stop - even when he told me to.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Great story

  • By Lori E. on 03-11-18

Aptly titled - but too cold for me.

Overall
2 out of 5 stars
Performance
4 out of 5 stars
Story
2 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 01-27-19

Misunderstandings happen in life and in romance, but I don't read or listen to be immersed in so much misery. The title is "cold" and the emotional temperature between Ayla and Rhett is truly frigid at times. The first few minutes put me off, and listening for an hour more didn't make me feel any better. Many readers and listeners loved this one, but it was the first Romance package title I didn't bother to finish.