• The Tailgate

  • An Original Short Story
  • By: Elin Hilderbrand
  • Narrated by: Erin Bennett
  • Length: 1 hr and 34 mins
  • 4.3 out of 5 stars (97 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

A digital edition short story about young lovers at separate colleges, exploring the early years of the central relationship in Elin Hilderbrand's forthcoming novel, The Matchmaker.

Clendenin Hughes first kissed Dabney Kimball during a Nantucket snowstorm freshman year of high school. Ever since that moment - God, the rush, the chemistry! - Dabney has known that she and Clen are an unsplittable unit - essentially the same person in two different bodies.

Of course, with Dabney now at Harvard and Clen at Yale, those bodies are 140 miles apart. And traveling is a serious challenge for Dabney, for reasons she'd prefer not to discuss, reasons having to do with her mother (or lack thereof). But with the big Harvard-Yale game coming up, Dabney is determined to make the trek to New Haven to see Clen. She's even borrowed a sexy black outfit from a classmate down the hall.

But when she arrives at the tailgate to see sparks flying between Clen and Jocelyn, a girl with dark blue eyes and luscious black hair, Dabney fears the collapse of a bond she has never questioned before, a bond so important that she'll be lost without it. A stirring portrait of young love at a crossroads, The Tailgate introduces two irresistible characters and invites us into a world we don't want to leave. To learn the fates of Dabney and Clen, read Elin Hilderbrand's forthcoming novel, The Matchmaker.

©2014 Elin Hilderbrand (P)2014 Hachette Audio

What listeners say about The Tailgate

Average Customer Ratings
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  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars

Disappointing

Would you say that listening to this book was time well-spent? Why or why not?

I ended up listening at 1.25% speed. Several times I wanted to shake the main character. She appears to have some serious issues that I assume will be addressed in the book The Matchmaker.

Would you ever listen to anything by Elin Hilderbrand again?

I will, I have enjoyed her books in the past . I might not listen to a short story however.

Any additional comments?

The story is only about half of the time, the remainder was an introduction to the book. Had I known that I would probably skipped this. Audible should have had that info in the description of the story. I expected a two hour short story.

1 person found this helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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To be continued...

I'm so glad that I have rediscovered Elin Hilderbrand's books. I enjoy how she weaves her characters from one book into another. The story may have been short, but it hit the spot as it introduces us to the characters in The Matchmaker, which will be my next book. I can't wait to see what's become of Dabney and Clen!

1 person found this helpful

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    4 out of 5 stars
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Great narration

3.5 of 5 stars

Suffering from a form of agoraphobia, Harvard coed and amateur matchmaker Dabney Kimball only leaves campus to return to her home on Nantuckett Island. She finally agrees to visit her high school sweetheart Clen Hughes at Yale for the annual Harvard/Yale football game. Though he's been bugging her since freshman year to visit, Dabney senses a reluctance. Will she have the courage to go to Yale and is her boyfriend hiding a secret?
THE TAILGATE is more a prequel to Elin Hilderbrand's upcoming summer release THE MATCHMAKER. Last week Hilderbrand released the first give chapters of her novel, which raised my expectations for THE TAILGATE. I loved the character if Dabney, who showed depth even in this short story. Hilderbrand's writing was impeccable as always, but there was something missing from TAILGATE. It didn't feel like a stand alone story. At $1.99 it felt overpriced for how short and incomplete the ending.
Heather Gudenkauf's LITTLE LIES, a precursor to her summer release did a much better job telling a stand alone story, introducing the protagonist.
Still, I enjoyed the story and characters in THE TAILGATE enough to recommend.

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Great Prequel

The story before The Matchmaker is a story of love and heartbreak. Dabney catches a ride to the Yale vs. Harvard game to join her boyfriend Glendenin. But all does not go as it should. Great narration.

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Left me wanting more

I felt the story was way too short. I was expecting to find out what happened next. Jumping to the matchmaker seems to have missed a good portion of the story in between.

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