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Publisher's Summary

No shirt, no shoes, no...problems?

Hemi Ranapia isn’t looking for love. Fun, yes. Love, not so much. But a summer fishing holiday to laid-back Russell could turn out to be more adventure than this good-time boy ever bargained for.

Reka Harata hasn't forgotten the disastrously hot rugby star she met a year ago, no matter how much she wishes she could. Too bad Hemi keeps refusing to be left in her past. Sometimes, especially in New Zealand's Maori Northland, it really does take a village. And sometimes it just takes a little faith.

Note: This audiobook begins about six years before the events of Just This Once, and yes, it gets a little steamy at times, because Reka and Hemi are just that way. It can be read as a standalone book even if this is your first escape to New Zealand.

©2014 Rosalind James (P)2015 Rosalind James

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Back to the beginning for Hemi and Reka

Any additional comments?

Just for You takes a look back at how Hemi Ranapia and Reka Harata met and fell in love. If you’ve read any of the Escape to New Zealand books, you know them well. If this is the first book you’ve read in the series, it’s a lovely place to start.<br/><br/>I’ve always considered Hemi and Reka to be the adults in the Escape to New Zealand series, so it was such a treat to see how their relationship began. After meeting at a wedding and spending the night together, they both sense something special about each other. Hemi promises to call, but he’s not ready, so he never does. A year later, they have a chance meeting on a ferry, and Hemi realizes his mistake, but Reka wants nothing to do with him. The way back to each other’s hearts is a journey that culminates in two people learning to trust themselves and each other, as they fall in love. <br/><br/>Claire Bocking, in my opinion, is the best at what she does. I lost myself in this book – I could see the North Island, the Tasman Sea, Hemi and Reka. Claire defines the characters so well that it takes no effort at all to figure out who is speaking. She makes me laugh and cry, and I never want the books to end. <br/><br/>Note: I received a free copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review. The opinions expressed here are my own.<br/>

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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Just for ME!!!

Where does Just for You (Escape to New Zealand) rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

High up on the list! I love Claire Bocking's work! So talented!

What was one of the most memorable moments of Just for You (Escape to New Zealand)?

The rescue scene in the sea

Which character – as performed by Claire Bocking – was your favorite?

In the series? Hannah and Jenna are usually my favorites....but in this book I gotta say Reka grew on me... of the characters in here Reka is my favorite, of course....She has that whole Strong woman who will kick your ass if you dont behave, but will kiss it better afterwards if you ask nicely as well ;)

Any additional comments?

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.<br/><br/>I love R.J's books, they always capture my attention. Especially her 'Escape to New Zealand' series...'Just For You' takes place before the first book in the series and we hear how two important characters in the series meet...and more importantly, we hear how Hemi has to actually work for Reka's attention. Love it!<br/><br/>My only issue with this story is that I wish the book was longer and a bit more detaled. Other than that, loved it!<br/><br/>Claire Bocking does an amazing job as always and Im in awe of her talent with changing accents. A multitalented woman! Plus, that Kiwi accent is to nail if you ain't a local. All in all, a brilliant book and worth every dime.<br/><br/>Another amazing Audiobook Just for Me! :D

3 of 3 people found this review helpful

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Get ready to fog up the windows with steaminess!

**Slight spoilers included** This is the prequel novella to the "Escape to New Zealand" series that introduces the "before" story of Hemi and Reka. Even though it is a prequel, it easily stands on it's own so familiarity with the series is not a must. However, it IS a must to be ready to hear some steamy scenes that move into the slightly dirty. Hemi is a young rugby player for the Auckland Blues and New Zealand All Blacks that meets Reka at a wedding reception in Russell. Things heat up between them for the night but Hemi returns to Aukland and the pair goes along their merry way. A year later, Hemi returns to Russell for a holiday with his team mates and runs across Reka. What follows is a story of how their relationship develops and it's definitely not all sunshine and roses. For me there were moments of frustration, disbelief, tenderness and satisfaction. This story is probably the steamiest of the series to date (up to Just Not Mine) so if you don't like a bit of tastefully done but hot sex, this is probably not for you. This piece is not done for the sake of sex. It give insight into Hemi and Reka further into the series. If you are new to the series and plan on going through the whole thing, I recommend reading/listening to the first four books (Just This Once, Just Good Friends, Just For Now, Just For Fun). It was nice to be introduced to Hemi & Reka in their current context and then be let in on the "secret" of how that relationship developed.

As for the narration, holy smokes does Claire Bocking do this one up right! Each character continues to get their own identity through tone, inflection, and cadence so you know who is talking--Kiwi, American, adult, "littlie", "wrinklie", and narrator. Her performance is well done so that you get when someone is frustrated, angry, unsure, indifferent, teasing, etc. The steamy scenes are incredibly well done in a tasteful way with just a bit of "grit" to the dirtiness of the dialogue. The performance makes the dialogue very real and believable. It's not like some audiobooks that you listen to and think "well that just fell flat" or "I'm not buying that scene for a second".

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own--I'm not they type of person to sugar coat something, especially if I was less than satisfied.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Claire knocks another one out of the park

Any additional comments?

Finally we get Hemi and Reka's story. You see them in all the previous stories as parents who know how to navigate the professional rugby life and help the newbies. This goes back in time to when they met. The first encounter is hot hot hot and then it's awhile before they see each other again. Reka definitely makes him work for it (as she should with their past). But Hemi is up for the challenge :) This is one you don't want to miss! Clair does a great job with the narration. The characters are well spoken and you can tell the differences between everyone.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Delightful

So delightful and loving. This entire series is great. Enjoyed these characters since the early books and enjoy learning about the Maori ways.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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A Look Back

Any additional comments?

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.<br/><br/>A wonderful addition to the Escape to New Zealand series that gives readers a look back at Reka and Hemi and how they met. They appear in almost every book as the wise, settled couple who mentor and support many of the younger players and the ladies they love. Reka is the mother hen of the WAGs, and it was fun to see her younger self before she stepped into that role, just as unsure of what was happening as all the others when it's their turn. And like all the others, she and Hemi eventually figure it out.<br/><br/>This novella has everything you could want from this series--some exciting rugby games, more cultural information about New Zealand and the Maori people, raging hormones of hot twentysomethings and what happens when they get together. Throw in a couple of misunderstandings, a bit of temper on both sides and you have an exciting story that fills in the blanks about a couple that you probably already love.<br/><br/>The narration just gets better with each book, keeping your attention through the descriptions of a rugby match as well as a couple of intense encounters, and amazingly is able to make the voices distinguishable enough that you are never confused as to who is speaking. The kiwi accents take you right into the story in a way that reading can't do. A great addition to the series. Can't wait for the next one.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

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Another great addition to the New Zealand series

Where does Just for You (Escape to New Zealand) rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

If you have heard or read the New Zealand series, you may have wondered about Hemi and Reka's love story. Well, wonder no more! This novella, takes you back to the early days when Hemi had to be extra persistent and patient in his quest for Reka's love.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Just for You (Escape to New Zealand)?

This story is so much fun that it is hard to pick one moment. What I loved about this book was that the main characters are native New Zealanders, so you are pulled into the culture and language more so than in the other books in the series.

Have you listened to any of Claire Bocking’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

This is another excellent narration! Claire does an excellent job impersonating the characters and you'll be pulled in from the very start!

Any additional comments?

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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The beginnings of a beautiful romance

Would you consider the audio edition of Just for You (Escape to New Zealand) to be better than the print version?

They are both fantastic but Bocking really brings the characters to life! Having not lived around anyone from New Zealand, it was nice to feel integrated with the culture.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Just for You (Escape to New Zealand)?

Without giving away anything, it was when Hemi was thought to have made a big mistake, but it was just a misunderstanding. I love how these characters are real and they make mistakes.

Have you listened to any of Claire Bocking’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

I've listened to all her James books performances and this one is just as fantastic as the others they collaborate on.

Who was the most memorable character of Just for You (Escape to New Zealand) and why?

Reka. She's so fierce and she doesn't take any nonsense from anyone, least of all Hemi. I absolutely love that I've gotten to see them happily married before I saw their rocky beginnings.

Any additional comments?

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • c9pilot
  • Saint Petersburg, FL
  • 04-26-15

A Lovely Prequel for the Escape Series!

Where does Just for You (Escape to New Zealand) rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Well, I love all of Claire Bocking's narration in this series, but the story wasn't as strong with secondary characters as some of the others. If you read my reviews, you'd see that I really enjoy the audiobooks with the most variety of characters (Just for Now, and upcoming review of Just Not Mine)

Which scene was your favorite?

One scene that sticks out is when Reka meets Hemi after the loss of a big game. Everyone loves winners but it takes depth of character to love a loser. (Not that Hemi is a loser, but losing is when he needs her the most, and she gets that)

Who was the most memorable character of Just for You (Escape to New Zealand) and why?

Definitely Reka - a strong and wise character throughout the series, I loved learning about her background and family and culture.

Any additional comments?

I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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Hemi & Reka- Here's where it all begins

Any additional comments?

I love this Novella! I recommend you take a listen for yourself! Its a short but sweet story. It sets the path and opens the door to an awesome beginning of a great series!<br/><br/>So, Here's where the Escape to New Zealand series begins. It all starts with Hemi and Reka, (who are one of my favorite couples in this series). It tells us how they met, fell in love, but almost let a misunderstanding tear them apart before they get to their happy ever after. This is not the last you will hear from Hemi and Reka. They are the matriarch couple, so to speak, in this series and make appearances in the books ahead. <br/><br/>I love Claire Bocking and her narrating of this story. She brings the couple to life. She is spot on with the kiwi accents. She never misses a beat! After reading the books, I can hardly wait to see how Claire put her spin on it. Sometimes when I reading the book alone, I feel like I misinterpret a character. Hearing her narrate the story, helps me to see the character in a different light. <br/><br/>Have a listen! You won't be disappointed, I know I wasn't.<br/><br/>* I received a free copy of this book in an exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review, and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • MF
  • 04-20-15

Look back, listen and love it!

I felt very familiar with Hemi and Reka as they appear in all the Escape to NZ books, but they haven't had a story in their own right - until now.
It's a fascinating retrospective into how they first got together - and a total surprise! But so right !
This Reka is direct as always but not as self assured, although she puts on a good front and Hemi is not the devoted family man. Here, he is single, newly adjusting to the All Black fame and pressure and frankly, a bit too sure of his own charm. Well that has to change ....

Just because a mistake feels good doesn't mean it isn't a mistake, says Reka. Ouch!
Hemi has some work to do. And it makes great listening.

As ever, Claire's narration performance is spot on, she can realistically speak the male parts, vary accents and intonation; everyone has their own distinct voice. I was swept up into the story.
It's all great listening and I loved it.

I should say that if you haven't read this or any of the books, it won't matter - it stands alone. In fact I would like to come across Hemi and Reka in the other books, knowing what I know now, a different perspective !

"I received a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. I was not compensated for my review and I was not required to write a positive review. The opinion expressed here is my own"