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Publisher's Summary

From New York Times best-selling author Norman Ollestad comes a captivating short story about the fraying relationship of a married couple and the bold, messy explorations of intimacy that only seem possible far away from home.

Jim Stenson has been flown to the bohemian island of Formentera for a monthlong gig: writing a screenplay for a famous Spanish director, loosely based on the classic French film Contempt. With his career flagging, Jim is determined to make the most of the opportunity. But the director raises the stakes, pushing Jim to draw inspiration for the script from his strained relationship with his wife Anna.

Anna arrives on the island with her own agenda, thinking this long-overdue break from her psychotherapy practice will offer a chance to clear her head and, perhaps, even reignite a spark in her marriage. Languid days and emotionally charged nights create a dynamic neither expects. And when Jim's writing and their time together begin to blur the lines between reality and fantasy, they must decide: Is this an opportunity for a breakthrough or the beginning of the end? 

©2021 Norman Ollestad (P)2021 Audible Originals, LLC.

About the Creator

Norman Ollestad, a New York Times best-selling author, was born in Los Angeles. His books include Crazy for the Storm (an Amazon best book of the year; published in 15 countries), Gravity, and French Girl with Mother. His work has appeared in TIME, Outside, and Men’s Journal. He lives in Ojai, California, with his family.
Photo credit: Jeff Lipsky

About the Performer

Eric Yves Garcia spins stories into a mic, whether alone in a booth or onstage with a piano. An actor and musician, Eric has voiced several mysteries, thrillers, YA, and romance, as well as non-fiction titles in history, self-help, memoir, and, uniquely, recipes. Eric's roles in multi-cast audio plays range from kids to classics, including Little Women starring Laura Dern, highlighted by Entertainment Weekly. As an award-winning singer/pianist, he has performed most nights of every week across NYC for more than a decade while also touring the US, UK, and Europe. His solo reviews have been published in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Time Out New York, and Chicago Tribune. Of the two gigs, the narrator wardrobe is decidedly more breathable.
Photo Credit: Xanthe Elbrick

About the Performer

Taylor Meskimen is an award-winning narrator who has been recording characters for audiobooks since she was in her early teens. She is also an accomplished actor, musician, and improviser who has performed throughout LA at many venues. The daughter of actor and narrator Jim Meskimen, and the granddaughter of TV's Marion Ross, of Happy Days fame, she comes from a family steeped in theater, with a love of the written word.

What listeners say about Formentera

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Language. Twisted relationships. Formentera.

I thoroughly enjoyed the craftsmanship and escape. Norman Ollestad has proven himself once again. My only complaint is I wanted more. Thank you.

2 people found this helpful

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Good Story

Good (if rather traditional) story, very good storytelling, good character development and excellent readers. As with so many publications of late, I stumbled across some really problematic narrative grammar and a few malapropisms that pulled me out of the story to wonder if proofreaders and editors are now a thing of the past. SMH.

1 person found this helpful

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A complete escape

Formentera completely swept me away to that small Spanish island and into the complex web of characters and the intense drama of a complicated multi layered marriage. Ollestad is a master with painting the backdrop and of immediately drawing the reader into this world and this marraige. I just finished and am starting it again and looking forward to catching all the nuance the second time around. Highly recommended!!

1 person found this helpful

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A perfect storm of events in the calm blue sea.

I didn’t want the story to end!
The cadence of the voice and the visuals of the sultry sea, this story instantly took me away.
I felt the tensions of the characters and at moments felt like I was sitting in on a Ester Perel therapy session.
The story was exciting but complex and I wanted to read more.
Hope this can be the beginning of an interesting series!

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Paradise Lost?

Sea, sand, nude sunbathing on a Mediterranean island—what could go wrong?
When it comes to the human heart, just about everything. In Ollestad’s erotic short story, a married couple discovers that intimacy can be the most treacherous or most thrilling journey of all.

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Loved!

Loved! Absolutely captivating. Wonderfully entertaining. Totally sexy and cool. If you hate Mediterranean island life, sailboats, Champagne, French New Wave cinema, and excellent literature, this book is not for you.

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An erotic deep dive beyond most marital boundaries

Norm Ollestad's Formentera follows a married couple's rocket ride beyond the shallow, perfunctory mannerisms of most relationships into the deep, erotic realm of lust, trust, and letting go of their masks to find presence. He masterfully places you in the minds of both the husband and wife as they navigate thier way out of a blocked marriage and the walk the razor's edge between a dead end divorce or renewal of passion and liberation.
The story is deftly written, sharp, consise and moves quickly. Ollestad's character's are so realistic, behaving and reacting from deep psychological drives within thier shadows.
The narrators do a fantastic job bringing the story to life, nailing the accents and conveying the character's complex emotions.
It's a fantastic tale that will transport you to that lusty Mediterranean island where you just might contemplate your own marital boundaries. Bon Voyage!

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Entranced and engaging!

Incredible writing and voice overs that pulls you into the mix. So many layers and dynamics in play: vulnerability/power, love/lust, inspiration/art, commitment/betrayal and the 5 or so different juxtaposed bilateral relationships. Amazing how the writer weaved a web of storytelling and relationships and cat’s cradled himself with Jim and Anna !! Bravo

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Engaging & Provocative

An engaging story that transports the listener to the colors and textures of the Mediterranean while navigating the complexities, vulnerabilities, fantasies and tension that exists in relationships as told from two perspectives with unfiltered candor. Fans of Ollestad will enjoy the subtly veiled references to past works including his best-selling memoir, Crazy for the Storm. A perfect early Summer "read."

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Excellent

Excellent, engaging story. I have recommended it to many of my friends. Looking forward to reading more of Norman Ollestad’s books!

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  • Gregory M. Brassard
  • 05-07-21

Loved it!

Excellent short story. I was hooked after the first chapter. Listened Start to finish in one sitting. Definitely recommend.