She's looking for safety....
Kellan Anderson is in hillbilly hell - or at least that's what it feels like. After enduring endless counts of abuse from her now ex-boyfriend, Kellan makes a run for her life and finds herself in cowboy country. Leaving her fancy clothes and expensive lifestyle behind her, she trades in her high heels for cowboy boots and changes her name to Andi Ford.
With her painful past threatening to catch up with her, hiding out in this small town seems easy enough - until one blond-haired, blue-eyed cowboy steps in the picture.
Will she find it in the arms of a cowboy?
Zane McKade has sworn off women, determining that they are all liars and cheats - including the new waitress at the local bar. After a rather unpleasant first encounter with the beautiful brunette, Zane's radar is set to high as he believes this woman is not who she claims to be. When his intimidation methods fail to break through Andi's barrier, he decides to turn on the charm to get her to tell the truth.
But Zane's plan begins to backfire as the more time he spends charming Andi the more he finds himself breaking his own rules and falling for her.
A contemporary small-town Texas setting is the backdrop for this romance. Carrying a feel that is reminiscent of stories written 10 – 15 years ago, Kimberly Lewis brings us the McKade family and the ‘new girl’ Andi, just trying to adjust to the very different country she finds herself hiding in.
While there aren’t any great new reinventions of the wheel here, Lewis develops Andi (Kellan) and Zane with flair, and each of the secondary characters in town are just as fun and well built. But of course, the reason Andi (Kellan) is there is to hide away from an evil ex, and well – this story would have been perfect without that rather over-wrought trope. The solution to that situation was confusing and a bit quick to resolve, and while I understood the need to give Andi (Kellan) a reason to travel to ‘hillbilly hell’, I did not wholly buy into her fear or the threat.
But – that was a small niggle in the overall story, and while it was a diversion from the lightning fast, snarky banter and sparks flying between she and Zane, it wasn’t the focal point of the story. And – Lewis managed to use the BEST Line EVER
“Screw you, cowboy!” she yelled after him, saying the word exactly as she had before. “And that horse you rode in on.”
Narration in this story is provided by Madeline Bundy, and like others that I have listened to recently, the performance was workable, but not outstanding. Overly emphasizing each word to completely enunciate causes odd pauses and breathing moments that are not reflective of the text, and while her conversational moments and slight distinctions for different character voices were performed slightly better, and gave some variation in narrative speed and interest, the overall impression was an average one. I love audiobooks for the little ‘oomph’ given by narrating a story, that bit of extra that a great narration can give to a story in their personification of characters and emotional emphasis. Overworking or not doing enough can ruin a story: this narration was just average and workable, neither special nor horrible.
I received an AudioBook copy from the author for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Would you consider the audio edition of Zane to be better than the print version?
The story line, character development, hint of mystery and progression of story is probably better in print than in audio. The narrator had lousy timing, and a rather grating voice; all of her characters sounded so fake, as a result. I was used to her voice by Chapter 2, though, which allowed me to at least enjoy the story. KL's novels deserve much better!!
What did you like best about this story?
The romance between the main characters was realistic, and readers can probably relate. The scenes were defined by the author without going overboard, as so may are guilty of these days. Therefore, a lot events were packed into this book.
How could the performance have been better?
Use of another narrator.
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
Yes, at the moment Zane finished the journal, and didn't let his surprise get in the way of his love for Andi.
Any additional comments?
Supporting characters played a vital role, and the reader can see where KL is headed for the series. Readers also need to heed the warning that there is mature material in this book, but it's done very well for those who don't mind.
If you could sum up Zane in three words, what would they be?
Hot sexy cowboy
What was one of the most memorable moments of Zane?
I loved the interaction between Zane and Andi - but also Bella was such a wonderful foil to Andi (Kellan) and gave her an early taste of what caring for someone actually means.
What about Madeleine Bundy’s performance did you like?
I am generally a reader, not a listener, but with a few long road trips booked, this was the perfect opportunity to review an audiobook. I have to say I really enjoyed the experience, and on the whole, thought the narration was well done. I liked that it was a woman reading - for some reason a woman can get away with doing a man's dialogue much better that the other way around.
Any additional comments?
If you like your romance wrapped in a cowboy shaped package - and let's face it, naturally created muscles seem so much sexier than gym gained ones - then this is a perfect diversion from reality. It is also the first in a series, so it will be interesting to see how future stories develop from the cast of this novel. Norah is the title of book 2.
This book is one of my favorites, having it now to listen to is even better!
Zane is a sweet, caring, family loving cowboy who starts out his mission to find the truth behind what Andi (aka Kellan) is hiding to make sure his family is protected. On the run from her ex, Kellan finds a small town with loving people to hide from her past. When these two get together, sparks fly and an adventure begins! This books has everything you could want from a western romance: sexy cowboy, strong heroine, loving family and friends, and just enough drama and adventure to keep you entertained but not annoyed!
The narrator was just ok for me, there were times she would get choppy and the flow of narration would suffer. It was a bit distracting at times but for the most part it was still enjoyable to listen to, I plan on listening to it again in the future!
I loved the story but honestly the only thing I didn't like was the long pauses inbetween chapters. I really can't wait till the new books come out.