The Gamble

Narrated by: Emma Taylor
Series: Colorado Mountain, Book 1
Length: 25 hrs and 17 mins
4.5 out of 5 stars (3,391 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

Love is the greatest gamble of all...

Nina Sheridan desperately needs a timeout vacation. With a fiancé who can't even remember how she takes her coffee, Nina wants some distance to rethink her engagement. Flying halfway around the world from England to a mountain town in Colorado should do the trick. But when she finds a gorgeous man at her rental cabin, Nina's cold, lonely adventure suddenly heats up.

The owner of the house, Holden "Max" Maxwell is surprised by the beautiful woman who turns up at his door. But when Nina becomes ill, Max spends days nursing her back to health. A private man with a broken heart, Max finds himself drawn to the strong-willed woman. Soon it becomes impossible for Nina and Max to deny their growing attraction to one another. Yet even as these two wounded lovebirds think about taking a chance on a relationship, a dangerous secret from Max's past emerges - and threatens to end their love for good.

©2012 Kristen Ashley (P)2014 Hachette Audio

Critic Reviews

"I adore Kristen Ashley's books!" - Maya Banks, New York Times bestselling author"Ashley delivers a deeply emotional second installment of the Chaos contemporary romance series (after Own the Wind)... Punctuated by blistering-hot sex scenes and fascinating glimpses into the tough world of motorcycle clubs, this romance also delivers true heart and emotion, and a story that will stay with the reader long after the final page is turned." - Publishers Weekly, Starred Review, on Fire Inside"Kristen Ashley's books are addicting!" - Jill Shalvis, New York Times bestselling author"I felt all of the rushes, the adrenaline surges, the anger spikes... my heart pumping in fury. My eyes tearing up when her my heart (I mean... her heart) would break." (On Motorcycle Man)
- Maryse's Book Blog, Maryse.net"With Brock's raw side contrasted with Tess's innocence, Wild Man delivers a passionate, opposites-attract romance." - Patricia Smith, Booklist"There is something about them [Ashley's books] that I find crackalicious." - Kati Brown, DearAuthor.com"[Kristen] Ashley captivates." - Publisher's Weekly

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What listeners say about The Gamble

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good but long

Would you consider the audio edition of The Gamble to be better than the print version?

Narration was very good so it added a lot to the story. Probably could have read it in less time.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Max and Nina were both good characters even though I frequently got impatient with her focus on not being the only "love of (Max's) life". Their chemistry was great even though they argued a lot. I enjoy books where the couple spends most of their time focusing on the positive development of the relationship instead of playing the roles of "star-crossed lovers"' who fight their attraction for each other.

Have you listened to any of Emma Taylor’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

Have not heard any previous books but her narration was great and I'm looking forward to listening to her again.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

I laughed a lot and cried at least once. I had trouble turning it off.

Any additional comments?

As remarked in the title, this is a long book for fiction. A lot happens and it takes a long time to resolve the major issues. I also have problems with the amount of profanity, most of which is unnecessary. Hearing it spoken rather than reading it added to the negative impact; but, I'm from a generation that frowned on that kind of language and did not use it as adjectives and adverbs in casual conversation, which makes me a biased judge.

33 people found this helpful

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PURE "HEART & SOUL" ROMANCE IN THE COLORADO MTS.

OH WOW! TAKE ME TO THE BEAUTIFUL BLUFF AND COLORADO FRESH MOUNTAIN AIR!!! WHAT A WONDERFUL AUDIOBOOK!

Nina resides in England and decides to take a 2-week "time-out" from her fiancé Niles. Who is completely oblivious to her emotional plight and needs. She rents an A-frame home nestled in the mountains of Colorado and finds that it's inhabited by the owner Max, who is not happy she's there. Yet, the misunderstanding of this booking is just the right set up for a Mountain Man to fall in love with a chic, beautiful woman whom he challenges to take a gamble on love with him. If it's hard to imagine a Mountain Man and a classy lady, then take the gamble to read this incredible story about recognizing something precious and fighting for it, despite the odds.

Regarding the leads, there were things I loved and disliked about Max and Nina, but I think that's what makes their characters more realistic. Max wields this quiet strength and dominates in a subtle, possessive manner. He's not one to explain his thoughts, feelings or background, even though he seeks to pull down Nina's emotional shields. I loved that Max made his mind up about Nina very quickly and he was determined to make her stay with him….forever. I also loved the little things that Max did. He seemed to touch Nina all the time--the sweet almost subconscious touches throughout the day, and he really listened to the things that were important to her. Also, his endearments for Nina were so darn sexy!!! ( DUCHESS, darlin', and baby).

Now, Nina is simply adorable! She has this effortless charm, intelligence and beauty that captures people's attention, unbeknownst to her. I love that she loves make-up, fashion, coupled with her genuine love for people and her courage get down to the nitty-gritty of issues is what makes her one awesome, strong heroine.

Nina finds herself in a whirlwind as Max sweeps her off of her feet in a love development that evolves around the countless needs of the townspeople who are a big part of Max's life and the bevy of characters from Nina's life who also come to make this one big adventure! Yet, there is also danger, and a murder to be solved and Max and Nina find themselves heavily involved in the solving of that case.

This book is long and if you enjoy really getting into background and character development with townspeople who are larger than life in the mountains in Colorado, then this will be a audiobook dream because Emma Taylor is an excellent narrator as she brings these characters to life! I loved this audiobook! And, since I've been running out of credits fast, it was perfect due to the length.

Lastly, the sequence of events that brought this book to a culminating end was fascinating, and so unexpected! K.A. is an exquisite writer as she keeps readers on their toes. I particularly love K.A uncanny ability to write about alpha males and the sassy, strong heroines who catch their attention. And, this romance between Max and Nina really caught my heart and attention. This story was sealed with an epilogue that was just gorgeous….so fulfilling, so endearing and so beautiful!

52 people found this helpful

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Very disappointing

I purchased The Gamble because it has such positive reviews. I am also from Colorado so I thought the setting would add an interesting element to the story. After listening to the audio book I am disappointed with most aspects of the work. The narration was quite good, but the writing style and characters leave a lot to be desired.

Ashley is particularly wordy in her descriptions. The result is a very long book and a narrative that does not add any new information or value to the story. Listeners understand how people move about in a scene without having every move detailed. It's enough to say "I went upstairs to shower and dress". It's long winded to say "I walked up stairs into the bedroom and picked out an outfit from my suitcase on the chair next to the bed. I walked to the bathroom turned on the light and closed and locked the door..." and so on.

The relationship between the main characters was the biggest disappointment. If this is the type of man women want to read about, than I am very unlike most women. The male love interest is overbearing, controlling, and short tempered in a way that seems less swoon inducing and more abusive. The female lead does little to stand up for herself in this relationship besides saying "Max" in a plaintive voice over and over, only to be interrupted and ignored.

The overall story had some interesting and unique twists and turns for a romance. However, if your idea of a good partner is someone who lets you get a few words in during a fight, lets you drive, and even occasionally lets you pay for things, then this may not be the story for you.

44 people found this helpful

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Enjoyable listen, bonus use in drinking game!

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

Really liked this audiobook even though it was reminiscent of the Dream Man Series. It kept me engaged through most of the book. I do have a couple of issues though. The first being that our main girl had tons of ums, sorries?, whats?. This caused quite a bit of the dialogue to be repeated. Maybe one reason why the book is so long. Also she said "Max" sooooo many times. The overuse of his name reminds me of the college drinking game (old days!) where you'd watch the Bob Newhart show and every time someone said "Bob" you took a drink! And on a side note the reason for the final fight between the two main characters was, in my opinion, very weak and detracted from the ending.

What does Emma Taylor bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

Love Emma Taylor! One of my new favorite narators!

25 people found this helpful

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Narrator

Where does The Gamble rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

I like Kristen Ashley's other books, so I wanted to try this series. I like the book, but this is the first time I can honestly say I am not crazy about the English accent. I never did get used to the voice. The male voice is not very good either.

What did you like best about this story?

Different from the other books and the story is fun, dialogue is fun, but the again, the narrator takes away from the fun part.

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

No, I know the "heroine" is English, but the accent drove me nuts.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The female is going through alot and the male really helps everyone. They are real and easy to relate.

Any additional comments?

I hope the rest in the series are not this narrator. Or at least she won't be doing the English accent.

4 people found this helpful

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The Gamble ~ One of my favorite KA books

The Gamble is one of my favorites, and after the narration on the Dream Man series I was kinda worried if the audio was going to be any good on this. As it turns out, they found someone who could pull off Nina's "slight" English accent and switch to non accented voices without a hitch....Max's voice seemed a bit awkward to me at first but in the end I was happy with it.

I can't wait for Sweet Dreams, there is a roughly 45 min excerpt for Sweet Dreams at the end that just leaves you wanting more. Now we just need the Ghosts and Reincarnation series to be released in audio.

14 people found this helpful

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  • K
  • 05-29-14

Fast Becoming my Favourite Author

I loved this book from start to finish. Made me cry several times. Can't really give more endorsement than that can I?

13 people found this helpful

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Perfect Audiobook

Every once in a while, I am lucky enough to find a perfect audio book in which some weird, alchemical mix takes place between writer, narrator and director and the result is a sublime listening experience.
The Gamble is one sublime listen.

It's a love story between headstrong English Nina and headstrong Colorado 'mountain man' Max with a liberal sprinkling of mystery, sex, gossip, sex, humour, intrigue and yet more of Ashley's inimitable sex passages. I almost always skip through sex scenes, but Ashley's sex scenes are so well written and pertinent to her stories, I often listen to them. She is better at capturing the mood, motivations and action of a sexual scene- be it playful or intense or just plain in the establishment of intimacy- than any of the great 'erotic writers' (NO- not EL James- think Nin and Miller).

The Gamble is a big, rollicking and engaging story with a vast cast of characters all told in first person by Brit Nina. Narrator Emma Taylor's performance is astounding, switching seamlessly between broad Colorado dialog and English dialects. (here, I ought to tell you that Nina's English dialect is a little Ronald Coleman-ish; a sort of American version of an upper class English dialect that took some getting used to for me who, like Nina holds both passports, but is still a monumental achievement in it's flawlessness).

I've listened to a couple of Kristen Ashley books and quite enjoyed them. Tired of the current glut of torture porn, which I keep returning to Audible (honestly, why don't they label that crap?), I thought, 'well, Ashley's safe' and bought The Gamble. I expected to enjoy it, but I never expected it to be as immersive and wonderful an experience as Outlander.*
Yes, it's that good.




*okay, okay fine: there is extreme torture in Outlander and other great books (American Psycho, the Collector) - and some violence in this- but it's not their raison d'etre.






8 people found this helpful

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Bad

Just bad. Demeaning to women. sexist, guy, helpless female, no storyline. And bad narration. Too wordy.

3 people found this helpful

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Splendid!!

Where does The Gamble rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Wonderful story! So well written! But what made it even better is Emma Taylor's narration!! Well done!!!

What did you like best about this story?

I Love Max and Nina!! They are the cutest couple!

3 people found this helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • reabook
  • 02-14-19

Terrible accent

I've read and re-read this book because it is one of my all time favourites but.......I have to agree with other reviews and say that the narration is absolutely awful.

If the inspiration for the female lead is Thunderbirds Lady Penelope then I could totally understand it. No one talks like this anymore -not since the 40's anyway and definitely not someone who is American but has spent a lot of time in England and is supposed to be living in Bristol.

I've managed to stick with it because I know and love the story but if that wasn't the case I doubt I'd be able to finish it.


2 people found this helpful

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  • Lady D
  • 12-05-17

The British accent was awful and put me off

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

To ignore the fact that she had to have a British accent otherwise it would have been great

2 people found this helpful

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  • Biddy
  • 09-09-15

Hate the accent

I don't know if it's the same with other stories by this author or if I read too quickly to notice but if I hear one more err or sorry I'll scream. As a spoken story it's so much more obvious and so much more irritating. The story as the written word was ok but spoken it was dreadful . As to the narrator no wonder people think the English
accent is so odd if this is what they are listening to, she sounded like she was half drunk as the words were so over pronounced and so artificial. Returned after two chapters could not force myself to listen any longer!

6 people found this helpful

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  • julie Sobutta
  • 07-16-18

Dreadful narration

I listen to a lot of audible books and this is by far the worse narration and accent i have had the misfortune to hear.
I'm only part way through and I'm not sure i can bear to listen much more.

1 person found this helpful

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  • a
  • 05-24-18

Awful awful attempt at what’s meant as a British accent

The narrator had a completely inaccurate and very unstable attempt at what’s supposed to be a British accent. Honestly, can’t they just have commissioned a British narrator?

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Sue007
  • 11-05-17

Great story

I read this book a few years ago and really enjoyed, so thought I would get the audio version. Whilst I enjoyed this very emotional at times story packed with lots of twist and turns fab, but if you are English you will probably cringe at the narration by Emma Taylor.

1 person found this helpful

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  • suzi butler
  • 03-23-17

Easy story to listen to

If you can get past the awful narration then it's worth a listen, it's not the best book of KA but if you follow the series give it a go. The terrible English accent gets easier to listen to. I did listen to snippets of the rest of the series to check it wasn't all the same narration but it's the same woman, just not talking like that. Phew!!

1 person found this helpful

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  • jd66
  • 02-11-20

Awesome

Being a huge fan of this author meant I got really excited to have the audible version too. Reading and listening enhances the experience. This couple Max and Nina had me enthralled from the moment I started. All the way through the narrator kept me hooked. The story is compelling and is full of drama, intrigue and suspense. It’s also filled with love. The characters are diverse and interesting. I bet the rest of the books will be just as good. I’ve read all the books and now I’ll listen to all of them as well.

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  • ★charley★
  • 05-02-19

Overall enjoyable

I did enjoy the story but felt Nina’s British accent was quite annoying at times, pronouncing flash like flarsh & marshed potatoes etc.

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  • thestarandangel
  • 10-20-17

Easy listening

I like Kirsten Ashley, this book would be great for a cold, rainy Sunday afternoon or even a holiday read.

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  • AshlingO
  • 06-11-20

actually terrible!

okay look, I didn't download this book looking for some quality literature.
But my god, surely basic writing skills would be expected. The protagonist's entire dialogue is just repeating what the guy said while slightly outraged. I couldn't even get to any of the good stuff as I found it so unbelievably irritiating that I stoped after three captures. And honestly that was a struggle!

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 06-01-20

I lovrd this book

I loved this book and the narrator did a fantastic job with all the characters.

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  • Emily
  • 06-22-19

Enjoyable but partially frustrating

I enjoyed this book and the narrator did a wonderful job. However the characters in some parts were frustrating, so that's on the author. Such as when Max took away Nina's keys or wouldn't allow her to have a private conversation on the phone. Other examples are when Nina tries to say something to Max and is constantly cut off, finally agreeing to whatever he wants. It's frustrating to think a 36 year old woman can't set boundaries with her family or lover.

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  • Jo howard
  • 02-09-18

Predictably entertaining:)

Plenty of drama, emotion, romance, decent descriptive sex sciences, etc etc
Recommend for a chill listen that’s not to heavy. Oh and I loved loved the narrator! I read that a lot of people didn’t but once you get into it, it’s perfect.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • stephanie
  • 08-20-17

A boring narrator

Nice but a bit slow, the narrator read very clearly but she did not inject any life into the story. She was a boring reader.

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  • Nicoline
  • 05-28-17

Mountain men

Would you listen to The Gamble again? Why?

Its a good long story. I love the characters. Nina is so English with a bit of a Bite!

What was one of the most memorable moments of The Gamble?

When she got to the A-Frame and had the show down with Max

Which character – as performed by Emma Taylor – was your favourite?

Nina is my favourite

If you made a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

Mountain Men

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 03-30-17

Fantastic story but irritating narration

Great story line and I can't wait to hear or read the following books in the series but the narration of this story was irritating. The English accent and speed was frustrating, to the point I had to laugh or stop listening.
I would HIGHLY recommend the book but not with this narration.

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  • Dim
  • 03-05-17

Terrible English accent

I read this after reading the second book in the series and fortunately it didn't stuff the story up too much. I like the story line but the English accent was so frustrating to listen to, especially with the pronounciation of certain words (flash is said as flarsh). I will read the rest of the series as the men are definitely worth the imagination.

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  • Darellyn Connerton
  • 12-28-16

Loved It

Chose this book after coming across the latest book from this series! loved Bounty by Kristen Ashley, so thought i hear from the beginning! i wasn't disappointed!

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  • dejoux
  • 10-03-15

Loved Nina

Nina was awesome and had me smiling throughout the story
Really enjoyed this audio book