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  • The Wicked Cousin

  • Rockliffe, Book 4
  • By: Stella Riley
  • Narrated by: Alex Wyndham
  • Length: 10 hrs and 38 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 181
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 171
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 173

Sebastian Audley has spent years setting every city in Europe by the ears and keeping the scandal-sheets in profit. Word that he is finally returning to London becomes the hottest topic of the Season and casts numerous young ladies - many of whom have never seen him - into a fever of anticipation. Cassandra Delahaye is not one of them. In her opinion, love affairs and duels, coupled with a reputation for never refusing even the most death-defying wager, suggest that Mr. Audley is short of a brain cell or two.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 4.5/5 Unlikely Dare Devil Match Stars!

  • By BJ's Reviews on 01-07-18

4.5/5 Unlikely Dare Devil Match Stars!

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

Reviewed: 01-07-18

4.5 "Unlikely Dare Devil Match" Stars for the story and 5 Stars for the narration!

The Wicked Cousin is another win for Stella Riley!  Having thoroughly enjoyed the prior books in this series, I jumped at the chance to listen to The Wicked Cousin and was once again impressed with Ms. Riley's talent for writing characters that her readers/listeners are certain to fall in love with.  Additionally, Alex Wyndham's narration is superb as always making this a title best enjoyed in audio format.  

Although this is the fourth book in the Rockliffe Series, the romance works as a stand-alone as the relationship between the main hero and heroine is fully contained in this book.  All that said, for those that have read the prior books, you will be happy to know that the prior characters continue to play a role in this book as secondary characters.  

After being stifled for years, for being the sole surviving son after his twin brother's death, Sebastian Audley has spent his last few years away from the strong grip of his father instead choosing to sow his wild oats even if it is on his own dime. When he finally decides to return to London, he of course becomes the gossip of the season.  Notorious for his inability to turn away a dare, he instantly becomes the target of many young ladies who are intrigued by his notoriety.  What Sebastian never could have imagined, however, is that he'd also become the target of a former mistress who is determined (in a Fatal Attraction kind of way) to win back his affections. 

Meanwhile, the one lady who is not interested in the "wicked" Sebastian is Cassandra Delahaye. So imagine her surprise when she finds herself in the same room alone with Sebastian in what could be a compromising position.  Fortunately for Cassandra, Sebastian finds a way for their first meeting to remain a secret, even if that way ensures that Cassandra thinks even less of his rule defying ways. Nonetheless the groundwork has been laid, and the unlikely pair begin to form a bond.  But could there possibly be a HEA in the cards for two such unlikely characters?  Moreover, even if they wish it so, what will it take for the former mistress to step out of the way?

Alex Wyndham is in superior form in The Wicked Cousin. In a short period of time, Mr. Wyndham has managed to climb to the top of my favorite historical romance narrators with his suave voice and attention to detail. Among his strengths are his ability to create character appropriate voices for each and every character. While Mr. Wyndham excels at the male voices, his portrayal of the females is also of a high caliber and allows the listener to just sit back and enjoy the romance.

To that effect, I felt that both his voicing of Cassandra and Sebastian was spot on. Moreover, even his portrayal of the large cast of secondary characters allowed for easy differentiation.

All in all, The Wicked Cousin is a treat that should not be missed by fans of Stella Riley and, indeed, any historical romance lover.

Source: Review copy provided for review purposes.

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

  • Burn

  • By: Shey Stahl
  • Narrated by: J. F. Harding, Greyson Ash
  • Length: 13 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 82
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 77
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 75

Milena Wellington, general manager of the Wellington Plaza, may have been raised in a world of privilege, but she's worked hard for her professional success, and she's not about to let anyone take that from her. The problem? Her love life is in shambles, she's sleeping on her friend's couch, her coworkers are constantly plotting behind her back, and she's stalking an intense, slightly arrogant, tattooed firefighter she had a one-night stand with.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Absolutely irresistible!

  • By NDP Book Review on 09-16-17

4/4.5 Firefighter Love Stars!

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

Reviewed: 12-10-17

4 "Firefighter Love" Stars for the story and 4.5 Stars for the narration!

Lovers of steamy, heat-filled listens will want to add room to their to-listen shelves for Burn! This book will definitely keep you hot and bothered with its red-hot intense scenes as well as chuckling along the way with its tongue-in-cheek humor. Moreover, the well-done dual narration by Greyson Ash and J. F. Harding makes this a good choice to experience in audio.

Although Milena Wellington comes from money (her father owns the ritzy hotel she is the general manager of) she's presently homeless by choice, but nonetheless sleeping on her friend's couch. This is because her boyfriend--who cheated on her--then had the audacity to kick her out. Then she meets and gets intimate with a firefighter who lights her world.

Problem is: Caleb--aka the hot firefighter--isn't the settling down type.

Will their union be a passing flame or actually be the catalyst that sparks a true change in each others lives?

The dual narration worked well to differentiate the chapters which are told in alternate points of view of Milena's and Caleb's perspective. Both narrators do a great job of both communicating the humor and the heat that fill the pages of this romance. Moreover, they use good timing to adequately pace the delivery of the story as well as instill each scene with adequate emotion.

Perhaps my favorite part of the story was Caleb's sexy voice. JF Harding, in particular, does an amazing job of bringing Caleb to life. Greyson Ash also exceled with Milena's parts making this dual narration a hit!

All in all, if you're looking for a steamy, funny romance, Burn may just be the book to scratch your itch.

Source: Review copy provided for review purposes.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Trophy Wife

  • By: Alessandra Torre
  • Narrated by: Will M. Watt, Aria Collins
  • Length: 7 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 212
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 206
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 205

Everyone in Nashville knows Nathan Dumont. Four years ago, his fiancée disappeared. Last night, he proposed to me. I'd wanted to escape my life, the seedy strip club, and the mountain of bills. I had seized the opportunity to live in a mansion, fill my days with country clubs and caviar, my nights with romance and sex. Maybe I should have done my homework first.

  • 3 out of 5 stars
  • Great narration failed to connect with characters

  • By Patricia Villali Koett on 01-29-18

4 Wife by Design Stars

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

Reviewed: 11-15-17


I gave this audiobook a B for the story and narration at AudioGals.

Narrated by Will M. Watt and Aria Collins

I have been a fan of Alessandra Torre’s edgy, dark and twisted romances for some time now, though I hadn’t had a chance to try her earliest works yet. So when I saw that her debut series, The Dumont Diaries, which had originally been released in 5 serial novellas, was being expanded and repackaged into a stand-alone book that would also be available in audio format, I knew I had to listen to it.

I must admit that while the story definitely held my attention, and contained its fair share of twists and turns, it wasn’t as dark or as edgy and twisted as what I had originally expected given my prior experience with some of Alessandra Torre’s works (note that Ms. Torre has also written other plain vanilla romances, like Hollywood Dirt , so not all her works are of this subgenre). That said, the heat factor on Trophy Wife , for those that enjoy arrogant, alpha-hole styled heroes, is off the charts. Additionally, there is a thread of a romance triangle that will keep you initially guessing what direction the story will take, never mind a suspense angle to the plot that kept me intrigued (though the resolution was ultimately much tamer than what my wild imaginings had initially conjured up along the way, given the mind trickery that I have come to expect from Ms. Torre).

Candy has definitely hit a hard stretch in life. Originally aspiring to be an interior designer, she presently works as a stripper to make ends meet. Unfortunately those ends don’t even include her father who has come down with a mysterious illness and who is not getting the health care he needs.

Then everything seems to change when Nathan Dumont and his bodyguard Drew walk into her strip club. The next thing she knows she’s being whisked away to a whole new life and being promised good care for her father. All she needs to do is pretend to be utterly in love with Nathan, marry him, and become his “wife” Candace Dumont. In public, he plays the devoted husband, but in private he subjects her to complete disregard, except when she is servicing his body (which many times he humiliates her by forcing her to do it in public).

Fortunately, she derives great satisfaction from her personal interactions with Nathan, even if she is left completely bereft of understanding why he treats her at all other times so coldly. She tries to derive answers from Drew, his bodyguard (though she can’t understand why Nathan needs a live-in bodyguard who seems to be constantly watching her). Notwithstanding her attempt to charm and befriend Drew, however, she is left equally clueless as to why Nathan picked her out of all the possibly girls who surely could have filled this role

Why did Nathan pick Candy, and what does he really want from her? Moreover, under such suspicious circumstances could there ever be a HEA?

See the full review at AudioGals.

1 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Destined for Love

  • Love in Bloom, Volume 5 (The Bradens, Book 2)
  • By: Melissa Foster
  • Narrated by: B.J. Harrison
  • Length: 8 hrs
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 157
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 141
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 141

Rex Braden is wealthy, hard-working, and fiercely loyal. Sweat at his brow, he works the family ranch by day, then kicks back at night with part time lovers who require nothing more than his physical presence a few times each week. But that was before. Before Jade Johnson, the daughter of the man his father has been feuding with for over 40 years, moves back into town.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Awesome story!

  • By Happyreader on 02-01-15

4 Family Feuds + Their Star Crossed Lovers Stars

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

Reviewed: 11-11-17

4 "Family Feuds and Their Star Crossed Lovers" Stars for the story and narration.

Destined for Love is perfect for lovers of the forbidden love trope, particularly Romeo & Juliet styled romances. Whether you have already fallen in love with the Bradens, are a fan of Western romances, or are just looking for a sweet, feel-good romance, Destined for Love is likely to appeal to a large audience of romance lovers. Moreover, BJ Harrison's smooth, tranquil voice makes this a good audiobook format choice for sitting back and relaxing to a heart-felt tale.

The hero of this story is Rex--Treat Braden's brother from book 1, Lovers at Heart. Rex is your good all-American cowboy who runs his family's ranch. He's the kind of guy who is an alpha hero and who you can count on both in terms of loyalty and protection. So imagine his conflict at the realization that the one woman who really ignites his feelings of love and desire is the one woman he cannot under any circumstances have because she is a Johnson, the family that borders his family's ranch and his family's sworn enemy due to a feud between the two family patriarchs.

Jade had always had a crush on Rex, but when she left town she never thought she would get a chance to explore her feelings for Rex given the family feud. Then several years later she returns. She now has a successful veterinarian practice and has lived through and moved on from a bad relationship, but still feels those same familiar stirrings when she sees Rex. And then Rex comes to her rescue, and they both feel those feelings stir, even if the same old family feud still stands in the way.

Will Jade and Rex get a real chance to explore their attraction to one another? Moreover, will they be the glue that finally finds resolution for the family feud between the Bradens and Johnsons or will the feud become an inconquerable obstacle to their love?

BJ Harrison has a melodic voice which pulls the listener in for a comfort listen. While Mr. Harrison doesn't have a huge range in his voices for characters, he does slightly vary his voice for each character. Additionally, he is able to impart emotion and empathy in the right parts of the story to add an additional element of feeling to the story.

All in all, Destined for Love is a good choice for any time that you're looking for a sweet, wholesome feel good romance with a good conflict subplot that will add to the intrigue and allure of the romance.

Source: Review copy provided for review purposes.

  • Stutter

  • Bleeding Hearts, Book 2
  • By: A. Zavarelli
  • Narrated by: Tracy Marks
  • Length: 7 hrs and 17 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 570
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 547
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 544

Someone once told me that happiness is fleeting. I can see now that he was right. I'm trapped in a black hole of darkness I can't seem to crawl out of. My twin and my lover want each other dead and I'm pregnant with a baby I don't know how to protect. Ryland says he will do anything to get me back, but how do you trust the man who almost killed you? When every option before you comes at a cost, how do you choose the right path? People say that history has a way of repeating itself.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Better than the first

  • By Nicole B. on 10-14-17

4 "Where to Run?" Stars/5 Star Narration

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

Reviewed: 10-14-17

4 "Where to Run?" Stars for the story and 5 Stars for the narration!

If you started Brighton's and Ryland's journey in Echo, then Stutter is a must to learn their conclusion. Please note though that you must first listen to Echo. If you haven't yet started this series, please see my review for Echo for the background of this story (as spoilers appear below).

Pregnant and armed with the revenge filled truth of Ryland's past connection to her brother and family, Brighton doesn't know where to turn. The one thing she does know is that she needs to get away from Ryland.

After nearly losing her, Ryland allows Brighton some room, but is even more convinced than ever that he really loves her. Therefore he attempts to woo her back pulling out all the stops. However, when the truth comes out about her pregnancy, will he be able to resist his dominant nature and take back control by forcing her to stay with him? Can there possibly be a HEA under the circumstances?

Tracy Marks as always renders a fantastic narration! Having come to enjoy and love Ms. Marks' narrations in A Zavarelli's prior series, Boston Underworld, I knew I was in for a treat. Ms. Marks has a way to bring strong dominant heroes to life in a genuine and believable way while at the same time lending credibility to the emotional circumstances that their heroines' experience.

In Stutter, in particular, I loved that Ms. Marks maintained consistency between the voices that she used in book 1, allowing me to easily fall back into the story even though I listened to a number of books in between.

All in all, the Bleeding Hearts Series is a great series for those that enjoy revenge and emotion filled, darker themed romances.

Source: Review copy provided for review purposes.

  • Kings Rising

  • By: C. S. Pacat
  • Narrated by: Stephen Bel Davies
  • Length: 8 hrs and 50 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 311
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 295
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 295

His identity now revealed, Damen must face his master, Prince Laurent, as Damianos of Akielos, the man Laurent has sworn to kill. On the brink of a momentous battle, the future of both their countries hangs in the balance. In the south, Kastor's forces are massing. In the north, the Regent's armies are mobilizing for war. Damen's only hope of reclaiming his throne is to fight together with Laurent against their usurpers.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Excellent Trilogy

  • By melissa on 02-19-19

A "King's Unite" for the story/B- for narration

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

Reviewed: 10-12-17

I gave this audiobook an A for the story and B- for the narration at AudioGals.

Narrated by Stephen Bel Davies

Please note this is the third installment of a story that must be read in sequential order. If you have not yet started the Captive Prince series, please see the AudioGals review for book 1, Captive Prince, as the below review contains spoilers for the prior books. Additionally, for the general background of this fantasy, medieval like story, please also see the review for the first book.

Kings Rising is a fantastic conclusion to a memorable and unique M/M, fantasy-based trilogy. Even during a difficult time, evacuating from Hurricane Irma, when most other books couldn’t hold my attention, Kings Rising was one of the few books that was able to grab my attention and provide me with a respite from the stress of my personal situation. So that speaks volumes at how well written this story is. Moreover, I enjoyed the progression of the political and romantic subplots of this story. This is a Game of Thrones-style saga that will definitely keep you glued to your earbuds until the last minute!

Book 3 picks up where book 2 leaves off: the truth of Damen’s background has been revealed. In the meantime, both Damen and Laurent are dealing with turbulent political times that will determine whether they will be able to keep their rightful places at the throne of their respective Kingdoms or whether they will die as a result of their legitimate claims. Interestingly, as forces keep calling their positions in doubt, their united forces may just be the answer to each other’s plights. But how will Laurent deal with Damen’s revelation that he is not a slave, but instead the man who killed his brother and the rightful King of Akielos, the arch nemesis of Vere, Damen’s Kingdom? Moreover, when the truth becomes known that Damen has knelt at Laurent’s feet, will Damen still be able to command the respect of a King, or will his people refuse to follow and abandon him?

See the full review at AudioGals.

0 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Prince's Gambit

  • By: C. S. Pacat
  • Narrated by: Stephen Bel Davies
  • Length: 9 hrs and 55 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 331
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 313
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 315

With their countries on the brink of war, Damen and his new master, Prince Laurent, must exchange the intrigues of the palace for the sweeping might of the battlefield as they travel to the border to avert a lethal plot. Forced to hide his identity, Damen finds himself increasingly drawn to the dangerous, charismatic Laurent. But as the fledgling trust between the two men deepens, the truth of secrets from both their pasts is poised to deal them the crowning death blow.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Stunning and tender

  • By Johanna on 08-07-18

Story A-/Narration C

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

Reviewed: 10-01-17

I gave this audiobook an A- for the story and C for the narration at AudioGals.

Narrated by Stephen Bel Davies

Please note this is the second installment of a story that must be read in sequential order. If you have not yet started the Captive Prince Trilogy, please see the AudioGals review for book 1, Captive Prince, as the below review contains spoilers for the prior book. Additionally, if you want the general background of this fantasy, medieval-like story, you can also read the review for the first book.

I devoured Prince’s Gambit , this second, somewhat longer (but more normal length – run time of 9 hours and 55 minutes) installment of the Captive Prince Trilogy, in just one day. While the narration still mostly suffers from the same flaws that I noted in my review of the first book, Captive Prince , I was generally more able to fall into a rhythm with this narration from the get-go (perhaps because I already knew what to expect). Additionally, this second book overall had a slightly different feel from the first: less dark in nature (so much so that I have dropped the dark romance classification for the genre) and much more focused around war and political strategy and the developing of trust and a bond between Prince Laurent and Damen. For romance lovers like me, this means that we finally do get some intimate interactions and indeed begin to see the turning of what commenced as primarily a hate relationship turn into something that promises to be so much more.

Book 2 picks up where book 1 leaves off: the Uncle Regent has convinced Prince Laurent that he must go to the border to quell a potential uprising. While Damen suspects this is a trap that the Uncle Regent has sprung to finally get Prince Laurent out of the line of succession of the Vere throne, Damen nonetheless determines that the well-being of Akielos (his kingdom) is also riding on making sure that Laurent succeeds in this mission. This is because they are making it appear that Akielos is the one that has been attacking Vere, which undoubtedly will lead to war between the kingdoms. Therefore, Damen convinces Prince Laurent to take him with him – even as he knows that once this mission is complete, he must finally escape Prince Laurent’s captivity and go back home to regain his rightful place on the Akielos throne.

What ensues is a clever chess game of troop training, battle strategies and uncovering of allegiances and secret plots. Meanwhile, during this trying and difficult time, the one man who proves himself to be the most trustworthy to Prince Laurent is the one man he at one point hated and mistrusted the most: Damen. This leads to unprecedented interactions and exchanges of thoughts and feelings. As the mutual admiration and affection inevitably follow, will Damen be able to carry through with his plans to escape Laurent’s captivity at the end of the battle? Moreover, how will Prince Laurent react once Damen’s true identity is inevitably revealed?

See the full review at AudioGals.

  • Captive Prince

  • By: C. S. Pacat
  • Narrated by: Stephen Bel Davies
  • Length: 6 hrs and 48 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 462
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 440
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 440

Damen is a warrior hero to his people and the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos, but when his half brother seizes power, Damen is captured, stripped of his identity, and sent to serve the prince of an enemy nation as a pleasure slave. Beautiful, manipulative and deadly, his new master, Prince Laurent, epitomizes the worst of the court at Vere. But in the lethal political web of the Veretian court, nothing is as it seems, and when Damen finds himself caught up in a play for the throne, he must work together with Laurent.

  • 4 out of 5 stars
  • Audio issues

  • By Kindle Customer on 07-03-17

B+ Story/C- Narration

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

Reviewed: 10-01-17

I gave this audiobook a B+ for the book and C- for the narration at AudioGals.

Narrated by Stephen Bel Davies

The Captive Prince Trilogy caught my eye when the previously released e-book version gained quite a popular following on Goodreads as can be evidenced by its over 29K ratings at just under a 4-star rating. This is a large number of ratings for any romance, but when you factor in that this book is an M/M dark romance, I was instantly intrigued. After having finished the first book, Captive Prince, I am definitely beginning to see what the buzz is about as this story is chock-full of entertainment with politics and leadership lessons and societal dynamics among classes being largely in play. The fact that it is also set in a medieval like fantasy world with knights and servants (including love “pets”) certainly also adds a mythical and titillating allure to this story. Unfortunately, the one area where this audiobook did not fully deliver was in the narration department. Additionally, it is worth noting that Captive Prince is really only the introduction of the story – in fact, the romance doesn’t even get started in this book – and books 2 & 3 must be read or listened to in order to get the entire story.

When a coup by his own illegitimate half-brother (Kastor) sends Prince Damen, the rightful heir to the throne of Akielos, to the enemy territory of Vere disguised as a slave, Damen’s life is completely altered. Once trained and groomed to be a king, Damen is an accomplished and legendary military hero in his own right. In fact, it is Damen who single handedly led the battle that killed the former King of Vere. His being banished to Vere disguised as a slave is therefore no coincidence but merely all part of now King Kastor’s sadistic plan for doing away with Damen and any further legitimate claims that might take away his throne. Left with no choice and subsisting in a very precarious position, Damen accepts his subservient position (a difficult feat for he is clearly an alpha male) and adapts to his new reality by concealing his identity while laying in wait for the perfect opportunity to escape, seek his revenge and gain back his rightful place. If he can also manage to inflict further pain on the new heir to the throne of Vere, Prince Laurent, or his uncle the Regent of Vere, before leaving enemy lands, so much the better.

What Damen least could have expected, though, after being drugged and beaten, is that he would be placed in the service of Prince Laurent himself (as his personal pleasure slave). Mind you in this alternate fantasy world only same sex relationships are accepted out of wedlock because the thought of having children of illegitimate birth is avoided at all costs. All that said, Prince Laurent seems anything but interested in Damen, instead treating him with great disdain and vehemence. Laurent hates everything that has anything to do with Akielos especially the former Prince Damen who killed his beloved older brother (the former King of Vere). Though their general approaches to political strategy and human interrelationships are completely different, Damen being generally good and altruistic (the good prince) whereas Laurent is cunning, calculated and vengeful (the evil prince), the one thing they both share is a common hatred for one another and what the other prince’s kingdom represents – the classic battle of good vs. evil. What could possibly come of the joining of these two people who so greatly despise one another? Moreover, all is not well within the Kingdom of Vere itself. As is frequently the case when the leadership of a nation is in flux (the Uncle Regent is supposed to turn over the kingdom of Vere to Prince Laurent once he reaches majority age which is scheduled to occur in less than a year), there are multiple factions – those that support the Regent and those that support the Prince Laurent. Does the Regent truly have Laurent’s best interests at heart?

See the full review at AudioGals.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • The Siren

  • By: Tiffany Reisz
  • Narrated by: Aeron James
  • Length: 12 hrs and 42 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars 703
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars 640
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars 644

Notorious Nora Sutherlin is famous for her delicious works of erotica, each one more popular with readers than the last. But her latest manuscript is different - more serious, more personal - and she's sure it'll be her breakout book…if it ever sees the light of day. Zachary Easton holds Nora's fate in his well-manicured hands. The demanding British editor agrees to handle the book on one condition: He wants complete control. Nora must rewrite the entire novel to his exacting standards - in six weeks - or it's no deal. Nora's grueling writing sessions with Zach are draining…and shockingly arousing.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Very intense and controversial....but a fab listen

  • By CAC on 10-08-12

4.5 "Choices" Story Stars & 3 Narration Stars

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

Reviewed: 08-27-17

4.5 "Choices" Stars for the story and 3 Stars for the narration by Aeron James.

Glad I finally had a chance to go back and listen to the book that started it all. Interestingly I had only experienced the White Years Quartet, so I think going back and listening to the Red Years Quartet, starting with The Siren, gives me a different perspective than those who have read this series in chronological order.

With certain secrets having already been revealed, there was no big twisty revelations, as I can only imagine at least one priestly revelation must have been in this book. For me, however, it allowed me to more dissect and really analyze the characters. I loved how Ms. Reisz has been remarkably consistent in her characterizations and moral persuasions of these characters throughout. It also made me appreciate how meticulous of a process writing The White Years must have been, as a number of the flashbacks in this book form the backbone of the story of the early years which of course is fleshed out in much more detail in The White Years.

As for the narration, I must admit that as these characters have already become so ingrained in my head, I'm afraid there was no way Aaron James could do them justice. For me, Nora could only be performed by a strong dominant female narrator. Moreover, even Soren didn't sound quite right to me. He sounded to soft to be the powerful winter king that he is. Kingsley also didn't sound quite right to me (even the French accent sounded off and lacked genuineness).

I must admit that I was so engrossed in the story though that I let the narration pass for the most part without affecting my enjoyment of the story even though it definitely didn't fit my mental image/voice of the characters. However, I would love to hear this book recast with a new narrators using a duet narration. For such a treasured series, I think this would make the audiobook a 5+ star listen!

Source: Audible purchased copy.

  • Broken Prince

  • By: Erin Watt
  • Narrated by: Angela Goethals, Zachary Webber
  • Length: 8 hrs and 45 mins
  • Unabridged
  • Overall
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,376
  • Performance
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,277
  • Story
    4.5 out of 5 stars 1,278

From wharf fights and school brawls to crumbling lives inside glittery mansions, one guy tries to save himself. Reed Royal has it all - looks, status, money. The girls at his elite prep school line up to date him, the guys want to be him, but Reed never gave a damn about anyone but his family until Ella Harper walked into his life.

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • Addictive

  • By Megan on 03-28-17

I gave this book a B+-Narration/C+-Story

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

Reviewed: 08-05-17


Broken Prince is the second book in the young/new adult trilogy, The Royals. I have to admit that I enjoyed book 1, Paper Princess, more than this second installment. In particular, I think book 2 suffered a bit from middle book syndrome. I felt like the plot line somewhat stalled throughout most of the book in one of my least preferred tropes, “the big misunderstanding.” It really wasn’t until nearly the end that I felt that the plot moved along with an interesting twist which should make Book 3, Twisted Palace, hopefully more riveting and likely different from the first two books. Fortunately, the narration was solid, which generally enhances the experience – that makes audio a good format to enjoy the story.

The story picks up where book 1 leaves off. Ella storms out of the Royal palace, after catching Reed, who she thought was her boyfriend, with his father’s girlfriend (Brooke) in his bedroom in what appears to be a compromising position. Heartbroken Ella runs away and disappears for a while.

Meanwhile, Reed is devastated. Not only is he being blackmailed by Brooke (who is threatening to pin him with her pregnancy if he doesn’t convince his father to marry her), but he is also missing Ella, who he has come to truly care for, notwithstanding their rough beginning in Paper Princess.

When Ella finally returns, however, she refuses to believe Reed’s version of what happened, instead believing that he has been playing her all this time. Things at the pretentious private school they all attend begin to get even worse for Ella as Reed’s depression and apathy leads to him to stop trying to police the school’s inhabitants. The power vacuum basically gives them a green light to start disparaging Ella again.

Can Reed somehow find a way to get Ella to believe that his feelings are true? Even if he does, will Ella give him a second chance? Moreover, will they be able to stop Brooke in her plot to convince Reed’s father to marry her?