What Kati Has Been Listening To
Nora Roberts used to be my all time favorite author. I still enjoy reading her books, but they no longer work for me the way they used to. That being said, for whatever reason, I find that Nora’s books translate fabulously well for me in audio format. I think part of it is because I’ve read so many of her books, I find it easy to get back in the car and pick up the story where I left off without trying to recall what happened before. Not to say that they are necessarily predictable, but they are…comforting for me. I know that the heroine will be endlessly competent, and the hero will either be cranky, easy going or dominant and bossy. It’s easy.
Whiskey Beach is no exception. The hero, Eli Landon, has returned to his ancestral family home after being suspected of killing his wife, who was cheating on him. Eli was an accomplished attorney, but has turned his attention to writing, as his brush with the law has curbed his interest in it. He’s stressed to the point of breaking and neither sleeping nor eating well. When his grandmother has a fall and needs to be away from Landon House for an extended period of time, he offers to go and stay in the house. It is there that he meets Abra, the housekeeper/yoga instructor/waitress who starts off taking care of him, and ends up being the love of his life. There are mysteries to be solved and love to be found at Whiskey Beach.
This is definitely not one of Nora’s finest efforts. Abra might as well wear a cape, she’s so ridiculously competent and serene and together. It’s actually somewhat irritating because she can do everything. Eli, on the other hand, makes a nice evolution from grumpy, stressed and out of sorts, to someone who becomes grounded in his vocation and in his personal life. It’s definitely not my favorite by Nora, but the confident narration and the tiny mystery was enough to entertain me during my rides to and from work. Final grade: B-
I use Audible to listen to books, and since I’d already reviewed this one, I got a great deal on the audio version of it. It had been long enough since I read it, that I thought why not give it a try. The story is that of Rebecca “Bex” Porter, who decides to take a study abroad year in Oxford, and there meets Nicholas, Prince of Wales. Bex and Nick slowly build a friendship that turns into love. But there are many, many obstacles in their way.
Obviously, The Royal We is inspired by the love story of the real-life Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, William and Kate. As I’m a huge fan of the Royals, reading this book was a no brainer. Getting a great deal on it made listening to is a no brainer too. The story itself is funny, sad, and romantic. Box and Nick are young, and act that way in the beginning, but as Nick grows into his great responsibility as the next King of England, the implications for Bex as his love are great and involved, and require tremendous sacrifice on her part. The book captures all of this brilliantly. The narration is decent. The narrator, Christine Lakin, does a fair British accent, but it lapses in and out, and at times I found it distracting. But the story itself is really entertaining. FInal grade for the audiobook: C+
This is another audiobook I got on Audible for a song. It’s narrated by Tanya Eby, and frankly, it’s wonderful. Generally speaking, Kleypas’s straight contemporaries work beautifully for me. This one is no exception. After Mark Nolan’s sister dies, he unexpectedly ends up with custody of his six-year old niece, Holly. When Holly comes to Mark, she’s so traumatized, she won’t speak. But when she visits the Magic Box, and meets Maggie Collins, who engages Holly’s imagination, Holly finally talks. Mark is both wary and attracted to the beautiful Maggie, who is carrying her own past wounds. But as the two begin to get to know each other, they are drawn into love. The story is beautifully narrated, and the love story is incredibly sweet. Final grade: B+