Jovi felt destined to be haunted by her past and that her future was all too uncertain. She'd spent her entire life in New York City and would never have imagined moving to small-town Arkansas.
But there she was. In the middle of nowhere, living with family members she had never known. And to top it off, the now normal life she was beginning to live began revealing how disturbing and traumatic the last four years had really been.
Her plan was simply to keep her head down until she could sort everything out. Life in New York left her with a lot of baggage, and she had no intention of looking for a boyfriend while dealing with the healing process. She definitely wasn't trying to fall for the gorgeous, out-of-her-league, off-limits guy who happened to be her new neighbor. So much for intentions.
*I received this audiobook in exchange for an honest review*
This is the first book of Casey McMillin’s that I’ve read or listened to. I have to say that I’m impressed. This was not a huge book, running time was a little over four and a half hours. But there was a lot packed into that time. The story of Jovi was one that sucked me right in. Starting with sitting in the therapists’ office because she hasn’t spoken for days, is an interesting was to start out a book. But it totally worked!
Jovi had a hard life, but she doesn’t really think of it that way. She takes ownership for things that 1. Most people wouldn’t and 2. That she shouldn’t be taking ownership for. As a result of these things, she’s a complex, twisted up, confused young woman who thinks she’s got her head on straight. But don’t we all at 17??
The story follows Jovi over several years and it takes us on the journey of her learning that she does have some issues, how to work through them, some wrongdoing (of course), and then a great ending that made me have a few happy tears welling up.
The narrator was great in this book! Raquel Vargas did a great job of flexibility with her voice for different characters and different moods of the story. I was extremely pleased with the narration of this story.
I give both Ms. McMillin and Ms. Vargas 5 STARS on this book! You wrote a great one here Casey McMillin! If you wouldn’t mind, please keep it up! Thank you.
5 Words: Sex, love, attraction, damaged, family.
I have to admit, when it comes to audiobooks I like my readers to be British. There's something about American's reading the books that often sounds so wooden and almost computer generated. This wasn't an exception.
I think that if I had read this book rather than listened to it I would probably have hated it. As it was, I didn't like it very much but it was pleasant enough to have on in the background while going around my various daily tasks. It wasn't my cup of tea, if I'd had a physical copy I'd likely have rage-read because it's that sort of book with that sort of plot. But sometimes I really enjoy rage reading.
There was something about Jovi that really ground on me. I just didn't like her. Sure, she was a pretty strong character who had had a horrific past, but beyond that we just didn't click.
I did like how this book explored the different relationships between family and friends, how none of those relationships were straight forward.
And this audiobook? It has been the one to push me back into the world of listening to a story. So I guess that's a plus point.
This was my fist book by Casey McMillin and my first full length audiobook too.
It did take me a while to get into the story, the narrator's voice was older than the character and it sounded monotone to begin with, but the more I listened the more I got used to it and soon I could focus on the storyline and not the narrator's voice alone.
Feels Like the First Time is a coming of age tale. Jovi's world is turned upside down when she is taken from the only life she has ever known and made to stay with distant relatives she has never met. Jovi had to work through her past and come to terms with it. This affected her every day life and her self esteem. When she meets the gorgeous boy next door she doesn't feel worthy and it takes a road of self discovery to enable Jovi to realise she is worth being loved.
For a new adult story I think this book has a strong message in it and many young girls will relate. In terms of feeling the emotion and empathising with Jovi it lacked in this department for me. Perhaps if I had read the book and not listened to it I may have felt differently. I also wanted to feel the connection between Jovi and Caleb more, their time apart halted any potential chemistry for me.
Overall, Feels Like the First Time was a good read, once it found its rhythm it was worth the listen.