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Publisher's Summary

Some things are easily forgiven. Other things...not so much.

Lenny DeMaio made herself a promise: She was done.

Done thinking about him.

Done worrying about him.

Done reaching out to a man who clearly didn’t want to be found.

Too bad no one gave Jonah Collins the memo.

©2019 Mariana Zapata (P)2020 Mariana Zapata

What listeners say about The Best Thing

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

Enough with the introspective man hating already!

I have a one hour commute twice a day and usually enjoy a light romance to pass the time. Each chapter of this story seemed a rehashing of the EXACT SAME INNER DIALOGUE of the female protagonist.

I absolutely detested her whiney, expletive rich inner dialogue and diatribe against the male character. It is a lazy cop out authors use as shorthand for "see...my heroin is an independent, empowered woman"! I didn't buy her as a loving mother. I didn't buy her as having any maturity whatsoever. And ultimately, I did not give a flip whether she had any kind of happy ending.

I endured seven chapters of nothingness thinking that surely SOMETHING...anything...would happen. It didn't. I am sorry for the performers, who gamely tried to bring the story to life. But even quality verbal performances cannot make a silk purse from a sow's ear (as my Great Grandmother, who really was a quintessential strong woman, would have said).

The best gift to myself? Deleting this book from my device unfinished...a first.

25 people found this helpful

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

An outstanding read AND listen.

The best audiobooks are ones where the book itself is excellent and with that in hand voice talent is engaged that not only sounds like the characters but reads with perfect pacing, inflection, and clear diction. The Best Thing has it all. The story is a beautiful slow-burn that puts us inside the head of Lenny as she makes a difficult emotional journey from justifiable anger, mistrust and resentment to fully realized love. And the reader is given the chance to see that the love surrounding Lenny supports her journey in very real ways. It’s so refreshing to experience characters whose trials and uncertainty are completely realistic and have them respond with logic, maturity and strength rather than flailing drama. As for the narration, this is one of the best I have encountered and I’ve listened to hundreds of books. The male voices are spot on including the true male voice of “Jonah”. And the timing was superb. Good job all. Enjoy!

25 people found this helpful

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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars

So boring I couldn’t finish

This is a very long story about basically nothing and nothing happens. The entire story is pretty much internal dialogue of the heroine. You don’t get to know the hero at all. It’s only from the POV of the heroine. No character development of the hero what so ever. The story is sooo slow. I couldn’t finish so maybe it gets better but I doubt it.

14 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Where Has Calum Been all my Life!

The phrase "all the feels" is tossed around a lot when reviewing the romance genre, but I honestly had NEVER used it until I read my first Mariana Zapata novel. MZ is the queen of the feels. It takes a very talented author to be able to write characters that will have you so vested in their story, that you will laugh, ugly cry, get angry, and then laugh some more all in the same book. Without a doubt - "The Best Thing" which is her best thing she has written to date.

Lenny and Jonah's story was SO incredibly sweet. I had liked Lenny in MZ's previous release, "Luna and the Lie" - but getting a chance to really get to explore her background and that of her inner circle was an absolute joy. I went from despising Jonah to being 110% on team Jonah (big and little "J"). As I am not the talented Ms. Zapata, I don't have the literary prose to express how thoroughly I enjoyed the experience of reading this book. Don't even get me started on how amazing the narration was on the audio version - which I waited with baited breath for before I allowed myself to read it. My only criticism for this book, was that it had to end... which is always the saddest part of an amazing read. 5/5 ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ or rugby balls, whichever you like - it was totally #SweetAs

12 people found this helpful

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

No tension, no character development

I spent a credit on this title after seeing all the great reviews and because I loved Kulti. Unfortunately I was quite disappointed in this one. Here's why:

1. NOTHING happens. There's no tension to speak of. No significant obstacles to overcome. The lives of the characters just move forward (slowly) in a completely unrealistically perfect way. And not in that "it's unrealistic but hey it's interesting and exciting and it is a romance after all" way. Just in a mundane way. Nearly all the tension in the book is manufactured in the main character's mind, which actually seemed out of character for her, somehow. And then when there was something I might have actually sympathized with her about, I just didn't care anymore.
2. The characters are not likable (except perhaps Grandpa Gus). The female lead is annoyingly negative, and seems to be strong, except when she's totally ridiculously unrealistically insecure. The male lead is just... bleh. Dull. Except when he becomes completely uncharacteristically gripped with jealousy which is just strange. Aside from the accent, he's not interesting at all.
3. Totally unrealistic relationships. They are all just WAY too easy. Again, not in an exciting interesting way. In a "there's no way life happens like this even in a fantasy so that makes me not want to read about it" kind of way.
4. No suspense of any kind. Even the plot twists (if you can even call them that) were non-events and predictable.

I got to the end (barely, largely because of Grandpa Gus) which is why I gave it two stars instead of 1, but I would not recommend this book, and it's made me less interested in trying any of MZ's other books.

6 people found this helpful

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

CINNAMON BUN ALERT - with a Kiwi accent!

Wow I loved this book. This is still all MZ, slow burn and all. But it felt a little different. Some of her slow burns can be really frustrating and by the end you don’t feel like the couple got any time actually BEING a couple. Not so here for some reason... sure the book starts with Lenny thoroughly pissed off at Jonah (for a really good reason) but the man is just such a sweetheart cinnamon bun of a man that she had absolutely no chance standing against him. And it is his steadfastness and no BS or games that makes this feel even better than the usual MZ (sometimes I just want to yell: TELL EACHOTHER HOW YOU FEEL FFS!!!). I loved it and I think you will too!
Some spoilers to follow:
I don’t think there is anything more ovary exploding than a hot dad doting on his baby and that’s what we get here. Jonah is thrown to find out that he is a new dad considering he hadn’t heard from Lenny for months. Except... she had tried to contact him constantly and he had written her often... but somehow they missed each other and Jonah did ignore her calls and remain willfully ignorant of her wellbeing. That is a hard thing to come back from or forgive. I know a lot of people don’t like the surprise pregnancy/baby plot as it takes away from the romance and feels like obligation if he sticks around. I occasionally agree with this but if the writing is good enough and there is more between the couple as in this case I’m ok with it.
I loved grandpa Gus and his Peter. The side characters were as full bodied and well developed as Lenny and Jonah. And uuuhhhhhhgggg that accent! Swoon!
Worth a credit for sure!

6 people found this helpful

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

Lenny ❤ Dimples

I'm not crying. You're crying. This is my third time through-2x reading, 1st time listening-and crying through the heartfelt epilogue. I thought Kulti was my favorite Mariana Zapata book (I love them all) but this might take over the top spot.
Mariana's female characters are always strong, witty and sassy. Lenny doesn't disappoint. Some of the comments, especially the vampire references, had me LOLing! I loved Jonah's earnest pursuit to win Lenny back. And his connection to Mo will "slip under your ribs" Also, Calum Gittins narration brings Jonah to life! I wish I could give this more than 5 stars🤩

5 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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She did it again (like I knew she would)

Mariana Zapata never has disappointed me with a book! I have been waiting to read this one on audiobook for a few months and let me tell you it was worth the wait! Callie (and now Calum) brought this book to life in an amazing way!! This book had such a great storyline and even better characters!! If I could give it more than 5 stars I would have! READ THIS BOOK! You won’t be disappointed!

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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The slow burn is TOO slow!

I usually enjoy Zapata’s slow build style, but this time it was just too slow. I did not have the patience to keep listening.

2 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Boring

Repetitive. Could not relate to main characters. Everything was predictable. Found narrators somewhat annoying. They tried their best with material.

2 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 12-23-20

Great book

This is a pleasant read. Calm and enjoyable and the ending so good and tears aplenty. The narrators very good and don't we all want a granddad gus

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Olive oil
  • 09-19-20

Not the best

A bit of a non book, with a weak story line, a shame because I usually love her books the best bit was the beautifully written ending

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  • FriesB4Guys
  • 02-13-20

Another must-listen from Mariana Zapata

I was waiting impatiently for this audio book, as I do with all this author’s books. As a New Zealander I was also nervous to see how the kiwi accent of the male protagonist would be handled. Delighted to find that narrator Calum Gittins is a talented NZ actor and his performance worked splendidly with Callie Dalton’s usual high standard of narration.

2 people found this helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Carcoura
  • 05-25-20

An awesome book, a sensational audiobook

Mariana Zapata just gets better and better with every book she delivers, but hats off to Calum Gittins and Callie Dalton for giving 2 of my all time favorite characters an extra dimension through their fabulous narration. Sweet (8-and-a- half-pound) baby Jesus... Grandpa the vampire... so much to laugh about, so much to squeeze tears straight from the heart. 8 stars out of 5. Easy.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Customer
  • 04-05-20

She is back!!!

Another amazing title from MZ. I was laughing and crying all while falling in love with these characters.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Kelly
  • 02-18-20

so enjoyable to listen to

I've been looking forward to the audio of The Best Thing releasing since I finished reading the ebook, and it was worth the wait. I really enjoyed the performances of both narrators, Calum Gittins especially - I love listening to characters that have accents, I only wish Jonah had more lines so there was more of him to listen to!

Lenny's relationship with Grandpa Gus was the best. They have such an amazing bond, and the way they bantered with each other had me smiling constantly. It was sweet and funny, and Grandpa Gus held awesome grudges when it was required.

I'm not going to say much on Lenny and Jonah, as the way the story unfolds should be read without spoilers. I just REALLY REALLY hope that at some stage the author releases a few bonus scenes from Jonah's POV because that would be so amazing.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Kindle Customer
  • 02-15-20

Always a hit, this one is a miss for me.

Let me start off by saying I am a huge Mariana Zapata fan and anxiously await her new releases on audio. She's one of the few romance authors that do a slow burn right. Unfortunately, this book couple I couldn't feel much of a connection between them at all. I normally devour a Mariana Zapata book in a day, but I found myself bored without the desire to keep listening. Though this one didn't do it for me, I will definitely continue to purchase every future release.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Anonymous User
  • 02-14-20

Brilliant Again Mariana Zapata.

Keep these great productions coming. More Calum please, just more. It was like a tease, wanting to hear his side more.

Callie is brilliant as usual, the best narrator by far.

Mariana, can you do something for this pedantic reader? You keep writing "sooner than later". The correct phrase is "sooner rather than later". It's annoying for Aussie me, with a penchant for correct English grammar.

Next please, asap. 🙏 Sooner rather than later, please. 😊