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Publisher's Summary

Maddy, Christine, and Amy, friends since college, are thrilled to learn their old suitemate's self-help book, How to Have a Perfect Life, has become a smashing bestseller - until they realize she used them as negative examples of how women let fear mess up their lives. The worst part is…it's sort of true. So, the three friends make a pact: They each have one year to face down their fears - and prove Miss Perfect wrong!

A free spirited artist - Maddy was always the artistic one of the group, full of life from her saucy red curls to her vintage hippie skirts. Her challenge, the friends decide, is to get her artwork accepted at a gallery. A job as arts director at a summer camp near Santa Fe - with its thriving art scene - seems like just the thing.

There's just one catch: The camp is run by Maddy's high school flame, Joe, whose heart she smashed when she chose her art over marriage to him. His anger over the breakup hasn't cooled one bit. But neither has their attraction. Old desires burn hotter than ever as Joe makes it clear there's only one way back into his heart: She has to get serious about the art career she once valued above all else. But will falling in love help or hinder Maddy as she struggles to meet her challenge?

©2011 Julie Ortolon (P)2013 Julie Ortolon

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

Overall

  • 4 out of 5 stars
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    48
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    59
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    32
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    13
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    7

Performance

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    51
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    28
  • 2 Stars
    9
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    4

Story

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    40
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    54
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    28
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Sort by:
  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Never Give Up

Nice plot or storyline, this was my first time reading one of her books. I was not disappointed, it shows that you should not always give up on your dreams and aspirations to please someone else

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Wanda
  • Pretoria, South Africa
  • 03-30-14

Almost perfect indeed!

This is a feel good, old fashioned type of romance.
Some steamy scenes which is never crude or over the top. The tension between the two main protagonists were enough to make me want to listen more and more.

The Momma character was a hoot as well as a very wise woman who basically served to explain the theme of the book while the two main protagonists served to advance the plot of love lost, misunderstaning etc.

The narrator, Jane Cramer did a brilliant job in giving a voice to a very loveable cast of characters.

WaAr

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Bryony
  • Wantirna Sth, Australia
  • 03-16-14

Perfectly fluffy

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Yes, absolutely! This is exactly what it looks like - a paint by numbers romance with a decent plot. It won't win Hugo's but it's lovely. It flows with an effortless beauty which is difficult to achieve in this genre.

What other book might you compare Almost Perfect to and why?

Nora Roberts books come to mind. This isn't a fantasy romance but it has that same relatable feel to it. The performance and the voice of both written and spoken narration is beautiful and charming and reels you in.

What about Jane Cramer’s performance did you like?

The slight changes in tone and rhythm when reading spoken dialogue or an actual scene, compared to that of reading text within the text is masterful. It honours the integrity of the written work. It's an amazing performance.

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

Will dreams get in the way of their second chance?

Any additional comments?

That tag line is so corny but it is what the book is, which is fluff. It's enjoyable and kind of brainless fluff but in the best possible way. Sometimes all you want is a book like this you can glide through.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Such a "feel good" story!



This is a review of both the Audible and the Kindle versions.

I haven't enjoyed a new-to-me author this much in a long time and it just goes to prove the old adage about never judging a book by its cover - but in this case, its 'never judge a book by its price.' See, I've had Almost Perfect sitting on my Kindle forever! Seriously, at least couple years, I'm sure. But I had this idea that because it had been free, it probably wasn't all that good, so I was in no hurry to get to it. Yeeaaah, no! I was totally wrong about that and I'm kicking myself for having waited so long to read this story.

Description...

Maddy, Christine, and Amy find that an old college roommate has written about them in her new self-help book-and they're furious that she's used them as examples of how women screw up their lives. And the worst part is, it's sort of true. Together they make a pact: they'll face down their fears-and maybe show Miss Perfect a thing or two!

Maddy rejected her high school sweetheart's marriage proposal for art school years ago. Now her friends challenge her to rediscover her lost passion for arts. In doing so, she crosses paths with her old flame, Joe, at an art camp. Perhaps it's about time that Maddy reignites another old passion.

My review...

There are a few things that stand out in my mind as to what makes this such an entertaining story. Most definitely Christine and Amy and their friendship with Maddy - true friends who tell you what you need to hear, even when it's not what you want to hear. Their relationship added a bit of a chick-lit feel, but not too much. This truly is a romance driven novel. And a steamy one, at that!

Another thing I loved is the theme of never giving up on your dreams. In fact, that's the jumping off point and the foundation of the story. And while the friendship is the catalyst for Maddie reaching for her dreams, Joe is also there, cheering her on.

But for me, best of all, I loved this second chance romance that, against almost impossible odds, was truly wonderful. No hurried forgiveness, no lame excuses that are acceptable just to move things along...the whole story, start to finish, drew me in and kept me totally invested in these very real, totally normal, compelling flawed people. (And an FYI to those I know will be wondering - there was no cheating involved when the relationship ended the first time.)

The audio...

Jane Cramer did a great job of giving each character a distinctive voice and personality. Her own voice is smooth, pleasant, and so, so easy to listen to!

I'm excited to read more by this talented author/narrator team!

My thanks to the Ortolons for providing me with a copy of this audio book in exchange for an honest review. It was such a pleasure!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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

Nice Surprise!

I got the kindle book for FREE, that's right, FREE at Amazon and then the Audible price was only $1.99 with their Whispersync deal! I was really pleasantly surprised with this one! I loved the best friends aspect as much as the romance. The 3 woman make a pact that each will complete a challenge decided upon by the other two. It is something that the person has let fear keep her from doing. I loved the interactions of these ladies woven into the story as a backdrop to the romance that takes place. For only $1.99 total for e-book and audiobook both, I say give it a try! You just might be pleasantly surprised too!

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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

Good But Urritating

I loved the story, but honestly, she doesn't learn, which is why Jane felt the need to use her as one of the examples of what to do. I cannot understand why it is so difficult to have a simple and mature conversation about reality. Instead, she prefers to live in denial and lie about everything, which is the same position she was in years ago. Maddie is driving me up the wall with her maturity level. Geez, still needs to grow up.

I'm sorry readers, I just needed to vent. Otherwise, it's a good story about 2nd chances and how we should take advantage of them and make use of of the opportunity when they come around. Good job Julie, the main character was just too annoying for something so simple.

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

An adult love story about second chances

This is the first audiobook that I've listened to from this author and I believe this is the first book in a trilogy. It was a sweet story, an the angst wasn't over the top, which I appreciate! I will be downloading the other books in the series. There's a HEA and no dreaded cliffhanger!

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

Perfectly Childish

32 year old artist Maddy and 33 year old ex-Army ranger acted too childish to be believable or entertaining. Their total lack of communication was annoying and boring.

They spend the summer together working at a children's camp, having lots of sex (nothing explicit or crude) yet manage to never have an adult conversation.

The author, who may be talented if misguided, needed to write about teens or have her adult characters act their age. Narration was good.

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

Great read

This was a really wonderful story. I am so glad I purchased this book and I can't wait to read the next 2. I think it would make a really good movie.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars

great story and narrative

very sweet and sexy read. makes you remember what it was like to fall in love for the very first time.