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Help Wanted Audiobook

Help Wanted: Assignment: Romance, Book 2

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Publisher's Summary

When Claire Nelson decided that her happily-ever-after lay not in marriage but in a spot on the New York Times best seller list, she vowed never to tie the knot. But that was before she met Paul Mendez, handsome and charming enough to have her breaking said vow and marrying him shortly after college.

Almost 15 years and four sons later, Claire is now a burned out breadwinner ready to ditch her quest for happily-ever-after, and Paul has traded his dream of chairing corporate board meetings for volunteering at PTA meetings as a stay-at-home dad. Feeling trapped in a demanding job, Claire's repeated attempts to get Paul to return to work fall flat. Contemplating divorce, she drafts a letter to the Plate Spinner, a popular advice columnist, asking for help.

But when the reply contains an offer that may just put her best-selling author dreams back on track, Claire's only question is: will Paul be on board? Or does her charming husband make a surprise move of his own?

©2015 Barbara Valentin (P)2017 Barbara Valentin

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4.6 (11 )
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  •  
    Zoe 04-09-17
    Zoe 04-09-17
    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "Book 2"
    Any additional comments?


    Help Wanted is book 2 in the an Assignment romance novels. There are many of the same characters as False Start book 1 .
    Claire has been forced to be the sole breadwinner of the family because her husband Paul just gave up.I really didn't like Paul. He redeems himself by the end but he was such a selfish prick in the beginning of the book I really had a hard time warming up to him.

    5 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Audio Audits CHATSWORTH, CA, US 04-03-17
    Audio Audits CHATSWORTH, CA, US 04-03-17 Member Since 2004

    I'm an audiobook blogger for authors and narrators. I do reviews and post all things Romance, Horror and Sci-Fi

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    Story
    "Wonderful Story!"

    Claire has the worst job ever! Being the breadwinner, she can’t afford to quit. After all, she has 4 boys and a house husband to support.

    Claire’s resentment at having to forgo her dreams of becoming a writer is starting to tear at the fabric of her marriage to hot hubby Paul Mendez.

    Paul has retreated to being the caretaker of his family after he takes a demoralizing hit in his career. It’s an honorable job, taking care of his family, but the toll it’s taken on Claire has him scrambling to save her dreams and their marriage.

    What a wonderful audiobook! It’s an adult look at love and relationships. Told with humor and honesty that anyone over the age of 35 can relate to.

    This book pulls no punches about the conflicted feelings Claire has towards her husband. Her frustration has her lashing out at Paul in painful ways. You feel for both characters in this book, there is no bad guy. Just two people trying to get back to some sort of happiness.

    Wendy Rich Stetson narrates and she manages to capture the humor and heartbreak perfectly in this 7-hour audiobook. Help Wanted is a fast-paced story and Wendy’s delivery was flawless in this fully voiced production.

    I look forward to hearing more from author Barbara Valentin and Narrator Wendy Rich Stetson!

    This audiobook was gifted to me in exchange for an unbiased review!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Laura Collins SC, United States 06-12-17
    Laura Collins SC, United States 06-12-17
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    "Great Book!"
    Any additional comments?

    This is a great book; this is the second book in the Assignment: Romance series written by Barbara Valentin and narrated by Wendy Rich Stetson. When Claire Nelson decided that her happily-ever-after lay not in marriage but in a spot on the New York Times best seller list, she vowed never to tie the knot. But that was before she met Paul Mendez, handsome and charming enough to have her breaking said vow and marrying him shortly after college.
    Almost 15 years and four sons later, Claire is now a burned out breadwinner ready to ditch her quest for happily-ever-after, and Paul has traded his dream of chairing corporate board meetings for volunteering at PTA meetings as a stay-at-home dad. Feeling trapped in a demanding job, Claire's repeated attempts to get Paul to return to work fall flat. Contemplating divorce, she drafts a letter to the Plate Spinner, a popular advice columnist, asking for help.This is a great book with a wonderful story and well developed characters. The story flowed very well and was very enjoyable. This book will keep you reading long into the night and you will not want to put this book down until you finish. This was such a great read and full of surprises. The narrator did a wonderful job with this book. She did a great job with the different voices of each character in this book. It was very easy to listen to and I didn’t want to stop listening until the end. If you are looking for a great book with well-developed characters then you need to listen to this book. I am looking forward to listening to the next book by this author and narrator. I voluntarily reviewed an advanced reader’s copy of this book. The free book held no determination on my personal review.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Witchywoman LONDON, KY, United States 05-17-17
    Witchywoman LONDON, KY, United States 05-17-17
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    "Fabulous and Real"

    Great story about a struggling couple and the challenges they face. Each character is working through their issues alone and tensions are high. When they realize they can recover and that they're still a team and that makes all things possible they slowly start finding their own ways and their way back to eAch other. This story is heartfelt and real! Their struggles are relatable to any relationship that's been tested. The narrator did an amazing job of telling this story and making me feel each struggle and triumph along the way. Kudos for a great story and great choice of narrator to boot!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Terri C. 05-14-17
    Terri C. 05-14-17 Member Since 2016
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    "I loved the messiness of life in this book!"

    In this book, Claire and Paul have a messy life, just like the rest of us. They have four boys, dirty clothes all over the place, a million places to be and bills that have to be paid. And one of them doesn't have a paying job--Paul. He's a stay-at-home dad while Claire is supporting the family with a job she hates. She dropped her dreams of a real writing job that will give her joy long ago. She is STUCK.And she is really MAD.
    All of a sudden life is changing. Changing for both Paul and Claire, but the changes are kept secret from each other. Could the secrets finish off the marriage that is already rocky, or will the marriage turn into the joy Claire has been searching for?
    This story by Barbara Valentin was so enjoyable and the narration by Wendy Rich Stetson was superb. I loved all the voices she used for all the women, men and children. An all around excellent experience!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Jan 05-12-17
    Jan 05-12-17 Member Since 2014
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    "I loved this book!"

    This is the first book by Barbara Valentin that I have listened to. I loved it so much that I bought the first book in this series (False Start) in Audible. Wendy Rich Stetson performs both. She added so much to this book with her expressions and emotions. I loved the humor in this book and how it was delivered. This book is part of a series, yet it is a standalone listen. I highly recommend this book. I found this book to be low on steam but that isn't needed in all books. This is a refreshing, realistic, and humorous listen that focuses on a married couple (10+ years and 4 boys) that re-evaluates what they want out of life. I was voluntarily provided with this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, narrator and or publisher.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Christy D 04-12-17
    Christy D 04-12-17
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    "Help Wanted"

    This is such a realistic story it's hard to not find someone in your life that you can relate this too. Their are points in the beginning that you wonder why Clair is even sticking to her marriage and want to just scream get out!!!! But then the story moves along and you realize that she really does still loved her husband and wonder how long is to long to coddle a spouse with no interest in helping out. I love that the characters were brought in and out of the story from book one that is always a nice touch in my opinion!

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    J and M 04-08-17
    J and M 04-08-17 Member Since 2015
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    "Very relatable"

    This is a book that anyone in a long-term relationship can find things to relate to. It's about how the day to day effects relationships and the strains and stresses. It was very relatable in many ways. Though, I can't say I understood Paul. There was a role reversal that was really interesting, and that part I could relate to. But, the lack of understanding or ability to see the burdens being placed on your partner, and then expecting them to prove they loved you before you showed them you understood was something I didn't understand. It wasn't a question of love, it was a question of trying to survive the day to day without the support of the one person who should be supporting you. There were also elements of keeping things from each other that just seemed trivial to me. It just seemed like lack of simple communication for some purpose that I didn't understand.

    However, there was a lot to love and enjoy about this story. I totally got Claire in so many ways. Like her, I was never a girly girl, dreaming of white dresses, weddings, and princes. I never wanted to get married or have kids. I had to many things to do and see. Then, I met this guy that changed every idea I thought I had about what I wanted. And, I'm so happy he did. When I got to the obit assignment, I was laughing so hard, I had to stop it. I re-wound it and played it back for my guy, and we were both cracking up. (You have to listen or read it to understand.) But, this story is about the juggling of the day to day, and trying to find balance between the needs and wants of your family and your own. And, I think most people with a family can relate to that.

    And, of course, Wendy Rich Stetson did her usual amazing job narrating. She captured those little nuances that had me either laughing out loud or really feeling the pain of the characters. It's by far not a heavy read, but one with some substance and relatability.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Reader Lady Tennessee 05-13-17
    Reader Lady Tennessee 05-13-17 Member Since 2014

    I'm an avid reader of Romance and a true romantic at heart. I also read and review in other sub-genres as well. Happy reading!

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    "My Musings"

    I recently read/listened to Fresh Start by Barbara Valentin and thoroughly enjoyed it. Wendy Rich Stetson asked if I would be interested in listening to this book, and since I loved the first book in this series, I eagerly accepted. Help Wanted is another great example of romantic comedy!

    Claire Mendez is stuck in a dead-end job, but since she’s the bread-winner ever since her husband lost his job and decided to be a stay-at-home dad to their four boys. She’s grown resentful toward her husband and is questioning her commitment to their marriage.

    When she receives her pink slip, she sees this as a chance to shake up her life in more than one way. While browsing the want ads, she stumbles across and advertisement for a writer of an advice column in a magazine. Unable to resist, she answers the ad and receives an offer to interview. Part of the process, the editor sent her a few letters from people needing advice, and she needs to write her responses.

    The editor loves her answers and immediately offers her the part-time position. She accepts it, and fortunately, an old friend in her old career offers her a temporary position, one which will still give her the opportunity to write the column. Unsure of her husband’s reaction, she does not tell him about the column.

    When Paul realizes his marriage is on the line and that Claire is close to calling it quits, he finds a temporary position as an accountant. He does not tell his wife since he can work from home and still handle their boys.

    Can these secrets each is keeping from one another work in their favor and ultimately save their marriage?

    Help Wanted is a hilarious romantic comedy with plenty of heart. The couple’s boys add a lot of flavor to the story. The pacing is fast and makes this book an easy read/listen. Although it has its serious moments, they are dealt with in a light- hearted manner that does not take away from the seriousness of the couple’s issues.

    Claire is a great character. I fell in love with her from the first page to the last. I could understand her resentment toward her husband and her disappointment in having to give up her dreams because her husband has given up on his. She deals with her problems with humor and does not allow her difficulties affect her boys.

    Paul lost his corporate job through no fault of his own, but nonetheless, it destroyed his confidence, rather than risk failure again, he has thrown himself into being a great dad. I completely understood why he made the decisions he did, but I was glad he could recognize he needed to change.


    If you enjoy great characters, in an interesting plot and plenty of laugh-out-loud moments, then you will love Help Wanted. Wendy Rich Stetson does another fantastic job bring the characters to life. Her narration is so good, I will go out of my comfort zone and listen to books I normally would not consider. I highly recommend Help Wanted, you’ll love it as much as I did. Happy reading!

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Kd CLINTON, MS, United States 04-25-17
    Kd CLINTON, MS, United States 04-25-17 Member Since 2009
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    "Clean & Witty"

    This is a good story, but it's barely a romance. Yes, it's about a marriage and the struggle to reconnect, but I don't view moments of kindness or forgiveness as romance; some people might. Regardless, it's an ok story of a distressed marriage with 4 kids (Paul, Mark, Luke, Tomas), a marriage of about 16 years. There is no profanity. And, essentially, no sex, since—4 hours in—the 1 episode of sex is only known because the author tells us it happens and that there was arousal. The story is very witty, and once I actually giggled aloud. The 4 sons had small moments of endearment, and both the main characters, spouses Claire & Paul, were likeable characters. The story is primarily from Claire's perspective and a little from Paul's.
    The story, eventually, includes newspaper replies read as part of the story. I generally don't like stories with emails or the like read within a story that is, essentially, already being read (as performed). But this was not often and was also witty, so it didn't bother me much. I still prefer stories without that type of thing, but it was bearable.
    The story is almost 7 hrs. long, and, in spite of the positive parts, I was ready for it to be over by the end. The primary reason was that the story started to center on miscommunication as a result of Claire and Paul intentionally deciding to keep a secret from one another, and the reason one of them had for doing it, was totally manufactured and didn't really make sense. So the story could've been over sooner and the issue easily addressed and fixed with one open conversation. So it was drawn out unnecessarily. By the end, my overall view is that is a story of unacknowledged and unrecognized privilege and great ease, in spite of what was supposedly struggles. And the little surprise at the end was seen years ahead of the ending; so no surprise.
    So altogether we get family members Paul, Luke, and Matthew, no sex, no profanity, and a specific statement about "marriage between a man and a woman." Message?

    Story is >3

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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