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Before Jamaica Lane  By  cover art

Before Jamaica Lane

By: Samantha Young
Narrated by: Angelica Lee
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Publisher's Summary

Penguin presents the unabridged, downloadable audiobook edition of Samantha Young’s Before Jamaica Lane, the latest novel from the best-selling author of On Dublin Street. Read by the actress Angelica Lee.

Edinburgh was going to be a fresh start for Olivia Holloway. Crippled by shyness around the opposite sex, Olivia nevertheless meets gorgeous postgraduate Nate Sawyer and decides it is time to push her fears aside. Before long, Olivia and Nate form a close friendship and she finds herself confessing her deepest secrets, and Nate, being her best friend, offers to teach her the art of flirting.

As Olivia and Nate’s friendship turns intense it soon blossoms into a passionate love affair. For the first time Olivia opens her heart but what she doesn’t realise is that Nate has his own fears and just when she finds herself hopelessly falling for him, Nate’s past returns to haunt him. Will Nate have the courage to confide in Olivia, or will he cut and run? And can Olivia face up to her own fears and keep him?

Before Jamaica Lane charts the love trials of characters introduced in Samantha Young’s best-selling prequel, On Dublin Street, and Down London Road.

Samantha Young is a 27-year-old Scottish book addict who graduated from the University of Edinburgh. She currently lives in Scotland. Her previous novels, On Dublin Street, Down London Road and the novella, Until Fountain Bridge, are also published by Penguin.

©2014 Samantha Young (P)2014 Penguin Audio

Critic Reviews

“Scotland’s answer to E.L. James” ( Sunday Post)

What listeners say about Before Jamaica Lane

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Wonderful Addition To The On Dublin St Series

I really enjoyed this story. The writing was on the wall that these two would end up together, so it was a fun journey watching them get there. Olivia is a beautiful girl that is yearning for love; Nate is a gorgeous guy who has suffered loss at the hand of love, well really they both have. They formed an instant friendship, and shared an easy camaraderie that created an extremely strong bond between them. Olivia trusted her friend and felt that they could share anything with each other, so who better to ask help her attract Benjamin, the cute guy that she sees at work. What she lacks in confidence, Nate makes up in his bravado. They agree to him helping her with her "flirting" skills, and finding her inner sexy goddess. At Joss and Braden's wedding reception, after indulging in some liquid courage, Olivia confides to Nate her sheer lack of experience with men, and before you know it, the private lessons in the art of seduction become physical between them, and that is when things get a little complicated.

I enjoyed the humor, witty dialogue, and getting to see our friends and couples from the previous reads; we also had the stage set for Hannah and Marco's story along with getting a glimpse at Cole in what I hope to be a future story as well. What I thought would have made the story perfect, was if we could have gotten into the head of Nate; he was struggling with some real pain, and I was obvious that he cared deeply for Olivia so I would have loved to read his thoughts. Maybe we will get more of this couple in the future, I sure hope so.

5 people found this helpful

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woooow!!!! the best audiobook ever!! no one better

wow...well..what can I say.
this book is my favourite in the whole series. This book was perfect! its the best book ever!!

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So Romantic & Sexy - I Love the streets of Dublin

Any additional comments?


Before Jamaica Lane is the third book in Samantha Young's *On Dublin Street series. This is a great best friends turned lovers story that will have readers staying up late to see what happens next.... Olivia has big issues with her body and a huge lack of confidence. She comes up with a plan.. She plucks up courage and asks Nate to help her boost her confidence by giving her sex lessons.

Though this book is essentially a contemporary romance, it also deals with some issues that many women face, like problems with body image and confidence. Young does a masterful job of creating some amazing "Sexy, So Romantic As" love scenes while also showing compassion and understanding.

Olivia was such a great character. She was one of those girls who never found the confidence it took to stand out in a crowd. She is now a librarian, who doesn't know how beautiful she is. I liked the fact that she was very spontaneous, but still reserved. With Nate she was happy and able to voice her opinions and she was confident but not with others, that should have been her first clue. Young writes her as smart and a bit sassy, but scared of failing when it came to men.

Nate is a great hero. He's definitely a ladies man, but his are not your typical reasons. Having lost his former love Alana, heartbreak seems to be his nemesis and he never wants to get close enough to anyone else to have it happen to him again. He just can't seem to help himself with Olivia though. She is everything he needs and when his lessons in confidence go a little further than expected, the sparks start flying.

I love this author and this series and i totally loved Angelica Lee's narration. BIG SMILES ALL ROUND :) :)


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  • Susan
  • 01-25-16

Read the series, but give this one a miss

Like the previous books in this series, the quality of the writing and narration is very good, although the narrator does sometimes forget to pause between scene changes, which can be disconcerting. However, overall I have to admit to disappointment. I gave the previous books in this series five stars, so my expectations were high, but I simply did not like the plotline. A stunningly beautiful woman would not suffer from crippling shyness just because she missed out on her teenage social life, nursing her sick mother. Furthermore, being able to “turn heads” as she entered a bar is confidence building, not shyness-inducing. The plot gets even more unbelievable when she decides she needs lessons in flirting from her incredibly handsome man-whore best friend. As he is the ultimate “player” and only ever indulges in bar pick ups and one night stands, the only lessons he seemed to give were in how to make a cheap bar hook-up.

Things get really weird when the h then decides she needs to “learn” how to have sex. This results in a lot of sex that was not particularly good. Mostly it involved stripping naked, five minutes of foreplay and then it was over after she achieved, naturally, multiple orgasms with ease. The sex was strangely emotionless and discussed like it was something you needed to learn – like driving a car. The h inevitably falls in love during these sex “lessons”, but we learn that the H is emotionally closed off since the death of his teenage girlfriend, and does not want any relationship. Apparently a rational, intelligent man, with a loving and supportive family, is still grieving his teenage girlfriend ten years after her death. He merrily slept with multiple women, but rejected them if they showed emotion or caring. Accordingly he also rejected the h when she confessed to loving him. His behaviour was self-indulgent, with a thoughtless insensitivity to how his actions could hurt others. As he had a great group of friends, I could not understand why they had not called him out on his crappy behaviour towards women years earlier.

Of course he comes to the realisation that he does love the h, and has to fight to get her back. I was relieved that the h did not forgive him easily, and that she also managed to resist his seduction attempt by telling him that sex was not love. The ending was long and pointless and pretty much all about lots of sex which strangely involved language more suitable for a crudely scripted porn film. Particularly annoying was her endless agonising over how to tell him she was pregnant. They had been in a steady, stable and happy relationship for over a year. So why are we given this pointless inner monologue over whether or not he will be happy about the pregnancy?

On a side note, am I the only one getting sick of the man-whore attitude in a lot of romance books these days. It seems to be ok for a man to indulge in multiple cheap one-night-stands prior to him “falling in love”. This is usually written as a sign of his irresistible attractiveness. But it’s not. It’s just cheap and tacky behaviour and shows a level of immaturity that is not appealing, and a callous disregard for women.

In summary (yeah, I know that I do tend to go on and on in my reviews!), this is not a bad book, just disappointing. Samantha Young is a brilliant, eloquent writer and skilfully moves a story along. I just feel that the plot outline for this one was all wrong, and I remain unconvinced about the longevity of this relationship.

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  • A. Martin
  • 11-20-20

Worst Scottish accent ever!!!!!

Amazing story as always from Samantha Young in this latest instalment of the On Dublin Street series, but the story teller is shockingly bad at a Scottish accent

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  • NattyH22
  • 08-22-19

Brilliant Book!

I absolutely loved this book! The story kept me intrigued and it’s a nice mix of sweet, steamy and funny! I think the narrator was extremely good at being Olivia and is probably one of the best narrator’s I’ve listened too she really embraces the story! ....but, I struggled with the Scottish accent in the beginning!!
Overall I love this series of books and will definitely be getting the next one!

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  • ken Hamilton
  • 09-05-18

Narration

Enjoyed the book but, I’m sorry, the Scottish accents attempted by Angelica Lee were the worst I’ve ever heard. And I’m not even Scottish, even though I live there. It spoilt the book a bit for me.

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  • A
  • 11-09-17

Narration

Enjoyed the story by spoiled by Terrible terrible Scottish agent. Sounded Eastern European. Worst accent ever.

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  • Jen
  • 05-03-16

Good story but bad Scottish accent.

Another good story from this author but the narration was spoiled by bad Scottish accents.

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  • Angela Cross
  • 10-25-15

Narration let this book down

The third book by Samantha Young and the weakest. The storyline was ok but the accents were atrocious, and spoilt the book for me.

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  • Ann MacRae
  • 04-13-15

Before Jamaica Lane

Loved all the On Dublin Street series eagerly awaiting next two A fall from India Place and Echoes of Scotland.

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  • NinaPasz
  • 11-06-14

Love it!

Would you listen to Before Jamaica Lane again? Why?

Great story, although the happy end is expected by default in this type of books, the story was still capturing and the road was bumpy and super enjoyable. 90% of female population need somebody like Nate whether as a friend or lover. Loved it.

Fantastic narration. Loving the use of different accents. I want more!

Who was your favorite character and why?

Nate of course.

What about Angelica Lee’s performance did you like?

Excellent use of voice, accents and good pace. I might listen to it again. Maybe I will acquire some lovely accent of one of the characters :-)

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  • Miss B
  • 05-26-14

Enjoyable story

Any additional comments?

I usually don't like first person narrative but I do like Samantha Young's novels. She can get a little too involved with all the secondary characters but I love her male leads - she knows how to create a really sexy man. The narration was good but the Scottish accents were just terrrible.

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  • lia
  • 07-21-21

Entertaining friends-to-lovers

An enjoyable and entertaining friends-to-lovers tale that was heartwarming, sexy and addictive.

The beginning was a bit slow and frustrating (I personally find the whole “good-girl-awkward-quirky-librarian-who-is-sexually-inexperienced-and-self-conscious-yet-doesn’t-realise-she’s-absolutely-stunning” storyline to be a tad cliched).

But the middle act was entertaining and funny as hell. I laughed out loud a number of times. The ending was also cliched, but sweet. This is the type of tale that fools us women into believing we can change the sexy man whores of the world 😂

The narrator’s Scottish accents were pretty terrible. Still, she told the story in a dynamic, engaging way and the production was great.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 07-20-21

Amazing story

The story is amazing but my god the Scottish accent is terrible. amazing story line one of my favourite books