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Publisher's Summary

Nolan Frederickson has watched everyone around him fall in love.

His younger siblings, his best friend; but love has always eluded him.

He thought he’d found the possibility of it once, experiencing a connection during secret encounters so intense, that years later, it still fuels his fantasies.

Content in every other aspect of his life, but tired of empty hook-ups and mediocre attraction, Nolan’s starting to think that maybe he’s just not meant to find "the one".

However, as they say, timing is every thing. What happens when the one that got away comes back? Does he take his shot at the future he’s always imagined, or is it just too much to hope for?

With external pressures, internal fears, and a meddling sister, one thing is certain; Nolan’s settled life is about to be turned upside down.

After all, things have never been dull in Plantain - why would now be any different?

©2017 Amelia Oliver (P)2018 Amelia Oliver

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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

Love is found when you least expect it

Nolan works for his father's construction company. After failed relationships and one night stands, he is giving up on love. One day he goes to a meeting at the town hall to discuss a new project to renovate the local high school. His contact turns out to be Rupert, the one that got away. Rupert is several years younger and was closeted in high school. In fact, he dated Nolan's younger sister for 3 years. But Nolan saw through Rupert's veneer and knew that he was gay, too. He tried to act on it one evening, but friends interfered and it never happened. Now it is 7 years later, and he discovers that Rupert has (and had) feelings for him as well. They begin dating. Suddenly some odd things start happening. The plans for the school get switched, a strange car is seen driving past Nolan's house, and a homophobe is out to destroy Rupert.

An enjoyable romance with some steamy scenes. Plotted well and with straightforward and non-sappy or dorky dialogue. The narrator, JJ Jenness, was pretty good, but he had the tendency to make all the voices somewhat the same - all with the "gay accent" stereotype, including some of the female characters. I'm not sure if Mr. Jenness actually speaks this way, he kind of did in the introduction and the closing credits of the book, so maybe this is just him. As a gay man, I sometimes find it irritating when narrator's speak that way, assuming that most gays speak that way. That is a falsehood. Unless the character is a real flamer, most gay men speak normally as any other male does and it lends more credibility to not have the gay accent. I don't mean to diminish Mr. Jenness' talents - he was actually pretty good overall. I've heard worse!

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars

Sweet with a side of spice

Rupert and Nolan are the hot guys in this spicy story.
From dating Nolan 's sister to dating Nolan. These guys end up working together. Eventually they become so much more than friends.
We see their first date and a few hot weekends together.
Some minimal drama at work. Some more hot times. Then they work out their drama. Liked the story. Narrator was well suited for this audiobook.
A well done treat.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

This was ok

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Not the audio, but I might recommend the book itself.

Would you be willing to try another book from Kate Hastings and Amelia Oliver ? Why or why not?

I would because I don't think this first foray was a fair shot at their writing.

Would you be willing to try another one of JJ Jenness’s performances?

I don't think so.

Could you see Almost Easy being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

I could see this as a movie, but I have no idea who would play the characters.

Any additional comments?

A complimentary audio was provided via Audiobook Boom in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

First, I've not read the series this novella is part of, and I don't know if you need to since the story is really just about the MCs Nolan and Rupert, although the other series characters do show up (duh! lol).

Not only is this my first book by this author, but this is also my first book narrated by JJ Jenness. Which makes this novella a little hard to judge because overall this book was just okay for me. I decided to request a copy because I read so many great reviews about the series in general, and Almost Easy itself. I loved the excitement of other reviewers comments, but alas I can't say I felt the same. I feel the narration is what held me back from completely enjoying this story because the narrator didn't change his voice between the two MCs - they sounded exactly that same. I couldn't believe it. If ever a book could have benefited from dual narration, this would have been it. JJ didn't have a bad voice, and he did express emotion, etc, when the situation called for it. But I wanted the characters to be their own person, and unfortunately the narration didn't give me that. What I can say is he did bring extra sound effects to the story that I liked, such as when a character was talking on a cell phone, the tone (special techno mastery) came across in just the right way. I liked that it sounded completely different from a normal speaking voice. Well done with that!

As for the story itself, as I said earlier - it was okay for me. Had I been able to read this I think I could have bumped my rating up because then I could have brought out the characters voice that I wanted. It was hard to follow the storyline because I kept getting distracted by the voice speaking. But strictly speaking I think the story is good, if a little dramatic at the end. The whole thing with deliberate sabotage and the guy (Will?) who is really out to get Nolan and Rupert because they are gay and he doesn't like gay people (thinks they are deviants), that was a little much for me. Although it's a realistic standpoint of too many people in this world. I still hated him for what he did and didn't like that part of the story at all (it felt like it was there just to add extra drama).

Overall I rate this with 3 stars, with the narration at 2 stars.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Good performance, plain story

As a teenager, Rupert had a crush on Nolan Frederickson, his girlfriend’s older brother. Years later, and out of the closet, Rupert comes back to Plantain to find out that Nolan is gay as well. Decided not to let his second chance slip away, Rupert sets to conquer the man he loves…
This story did not work for me, sorry. Maybe it is because it is my first book on the series, but I could not get invested on the romance. Both Rupert and Nolan are plain, one-dimensional characters, who seem to solve their differences with sex, whether angry, sweet, possessive or kinky… there is a lot of sex in this story, which does not seem to provide anything to the general development of the characters, to a point where it becomes boring. The story is told from a bouncing point of view, but none of the characters seem to be able to think through the haze of testosterone clouding their minds...
JJ Jeness’ narration is good, he manages to imbue the characters with a personality they lack in the plot through changes of pitch and tone. His performance manages to make an otherwise quite predictable plot entertaining.
I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator or publisher

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Hell Yes!!

This was great! I didn’t realize this was an MM before I stated I was so pleasantly surprised:) Hot and sexy! They are so perfect for each other! Awesome job!

This is an unbiased review with a credit from audiobookboom

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

Hot & Steamy

A wonderful hot and steamy story that I really enjoyed. The storyline captivated me right from the beginning. Nolan and Rupert were attracted to each other in high school but they never did anything about it. Years later, they're now back in the same town and the sparks fly. Their attraction and chemistry are undeniable. They are perfect together!
JJ Jenness did an excellent job of bringing the story to life and handled the characterizations flawlessly.
I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

My Two Pennies

I’m consumed yet again with these men and listening to JJ Jenness narrate had me never wanting to hit pause. Reading the story I was hooked and now listening to Rupert and Nolan I feel their connection even more then before. The passion coming through my speakers pulls you in, grabs hold and doesn’t let go. JJ has done a great job with separating both men and their voices, you can easily distinguish who’s speaking in that moment. Highly recommended you not only read but listen to this book. This is my unbiased and voluntary review.

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars

Didn't work for me on any level

I'm sorry, but this book didn’t work for me. The reasons why are plenty, but my two main ones being that there was just too much focus on sex and not enough research or knowledge about gay men. Now I'm the first one to admit that I'm not in any way shape or form an expert on gay men, nor do I claim to be. But even I know that lube is a thing and there are actually more brain cell function in men that are able to focus on other things than sex. And even more shocking - men actually can spend time together without having sex - there is this thing called talking.

Then you have statements like these and it becomes painfully obvious how little these authors understand about gay men:

🎧 "A lover who made him comfortable enough sexually to be verse."


Or my personal favourite:

🎧 " I'm the top. The more masculine partner. "


Being a top or bottom has NOTHING to do with how masculine or dominant a person is!
Now I could go on and rant about how untrue that quote is, but I’ll just let it speak for itself.


Sadly the book doesn't get any better as the minutes and hours ticks along. As I said earlier it was all just too much focus on sex. The plot itself was lacking, missing really, buried deep under all the sex crazed men. I don't know if there was a single minute of this audiobook where sex, dicks, erections, and whatnot weren’t mentioned in one form or another. It was just too much. I was bored out of my mind. I’m actually wondering whether teen boys just discovering what their dicks can do are this obsessed?

JJ Jenness did an okay job narrating this story. It looks like this might be his first attempt at narrating a book and it showed. It was a bit stilted at times and lacked that natural flow of the words. I also wish that his voice for Rupert was a bit less feminine, at times I did forget I was listening to a m/m story and not a m/f one. With that I don’t mean that all male voices need to be deep and growly, but I usually don't like these lighter voices for guys that aren't the flamboyant ones. But that Is just my own personal opinion. I also felt that he wasn't feeling what he was narrating, and only reading the words in front of him. I'm sad to say he sounded bored at times, and that doesn't draw the listener into the story and make them a part of it. So all in all, the narration wasn’t terrible, but there is definite potential for improvement.

I'm sorry to say that I just wouldn't recommend this book to anyone, there are so many better m/m romances out there.

A copy of this audiobook was generously provided by the narrator in exchange for an honest review

0 of 1 people found this review helpful