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Publisher's Summary

When the future is shrouded and it’s hard to find direction, maybe it’s time to let the heart lead the way....

Ronan Walker stands at a crossroads, unsure how to pursue his education...unsure if he even wants to. Now that his mother is gone, all he has left are the wonderful stories of her youth in Ireland, and he’s drawn to the land of his ancestors. 

There, he seeks out his mother’s family and meets Fergal Walsh, who works at Ronan’s aunt’s bookstore. A love of literature facilitates a fast friendship between the two men, and even though Ronan cannot deny the potential - and his desire - for more, he cannot see a future for the two of them when he leaves Ireland. 

Fergal must persuade Ronan to give school in Dublin a chance - and convince Ronan his heart has already found its home.  

World of Love: Stories of romance that span every corner of the globe.

©2017 J. C. Long (P)2018 J. C. Long

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Broome's Books Review

Ronan has lost his mother and is finding it hard to move forward with his life without her by his side. His mother was born and raised in Ireland before marrying Ronan’s father and moving to Atlanta, Georgia. She’s always dazzled him with stories of Ireland and the life she lived while there. He goes to see what his mother loved and perhaps to be close to what he has left of his mother’s memories.

His family in Ireland were welcoming, caring and supportive. They encourage him to explore Ireland, to see the places and people that were important to his mother. At his Aunt’s bookshop, Ronan meets Fergal. He and Fergal end up seeing a lot of each other and they find companionship with each other.

Fergal shows him the heart of Ireland and I loved being able to go on that journey with Ronan. Their attraction was slow, sweet and had me wondering, will they? It wasn’t all roses for Ronan and Fergal. Ronan doesn’t know how long he’ll be in Ireland and because of that he pushes Fergal away. I loved the resolution of this. When I finished listening to this, it was like a happy little sigh. It made me want to save up to go to Ireland and find my own romance that might keep me there.

I’ve listened to a couple of books narrated by John Steinkamp and he’s got a voice that you may have to get used to. At first it distracted me but after the first few chapters, his voice fit the story. It was clear, concise and helped the story along.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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This is a very sweet and romantic story.

A complimentary audio code was provided in exchange for an honest review.

This is a very sweet and romantic story. Ronan is extremely depressed after the death of his mother, and he travels to Ireland - his mom's homeland - and he spends time with his mother's family and friends. This is a short story but it didn't feel that way. Ronan's love of his mother, his grief and anger over he death, his decision to go to Ireland, meeting the family and then Fergal - the spacing of the storyline was perfect. It takes an amazing talent to pack a lot into a short page count, and not to make it feel rushed to too full.

John Steinkamps narration was perfect for these characters; his range of accents really worked for this and I loved the inflections in his voice; it felt very natural, just as if he was having a conversation. Sometimes when I listen to an audiobook, the narration comes across as very flat and frankly dull - without life - but John's voice just seems to naturally have this flow to it and it's like he doesn't even have to try. I definitely look forward to more books narrated by John, and J.C. Long.

This is my first book by J.C. and if Hearts in Ireland is an example of JC's talent, I am going to be a big fan.

To give a (very) brief summary of the story, Ronan is basically looking to find himself. He's been lost since his mother became ill (I think even before that). He put off going to grad school (he was going to be a teacher), and he is stuck being a bartender (which he hates) and when his mother dies, he shuts down; doesn't go to work, barely eats, doesn't shower or take care of himself. It was very emotional and I felt so sorry for Ronan. But when he makes it Ireland and spends time with his mother's family, and when he meets Fergal, Ronan starts to wake up and decides it's time to figure out what to do with his life. The expected fight between Fergal and Ronan is tough to see, but I never questioned it. Ronan wasn't sure what he was doing - was he going back to America, was he going to stay in Ireland, was he going back to college, was his relationship with Fergal simply a result of Ronan's grief over his mother. So many things in Ronan's life were uncertain. I just loved seeing Ronan discover himself and finally figure out what he wanted to do. It was just a very lovely story and I would love to read more about these characters again.

4.5 stars for the story; 5 for the narration.

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A Well Written and Engaging Tale Set in Ireland

Hearts in Ireland is a well written and engaging tale in which we meet the lead character Ronan just after the death of his mother, who was a native of Ireland. Knowing his mother's dream was to show him where she grew up, Ronan takes a trip to visit her family. While there he meets Fergal, a handsome, easygoing young man who works in his aunt's bookstore. Their connection is instant, but Ronan's struggles with both his recent loss and his personal demons threaten to come between them. Ronan's cousin is a wonderful side story that adds touches of humor to the book, as well.

Narrator John Steinkamp does a wonderful job bringing the characters to life and tackles the Irish accents with perfection. A pleasant story and a charming listen.

*I was provided a free review copy of this audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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Charming Tale of Self-Discovery

This delightful little tale follows Ronan's journey of self-discovery instigated by a terrible loss. Returning to his roots, Ronan finds himself uncovering the Ireland his mother always intended him to see, but what he really discovers is himself. The story is charming and enjoyable for being on the shorter side. The narration is really what made this story for me. The accent and pacing was great, and I really enjoyed it.

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Romance in Ireland

Ronan's mother left Ireland to settle down in America with her husband, and her son only knew her homeland from her stories and books. She planned to take Ronan to visit the country she loved, but they never got around to it. Now that she's gone, a grief-stricken Ronan decides to visit his mom's family and get to know Ireland.
Ronan's Irish relatives are excited to have him visit, and they welcome him immediately. When he meets Fergal, Ronan begins to have feelings he's not ready for, with his life in its current state of confusion. The two men become closer and closer, with Ronan unable to decide what he wants. There are times Ronan needs to be shaken a bit, but it comes from his indecision about his future, not from a desire to cause pain. Meanwhile, Fergal is kind and sexy, and he really is just about perfect.
I really enjoyed this story, which brought to life the places in Ireland where Ronan spent his time. I want to visit those same places. The narration was great, and I especially loved the way Fergal was portrayed. I'm quite happy with the time I spent experiencing this audiobook!