Can you believe it's June already? Gosh I hope the summer flies by fast. As one who is in a dry, very hot climate with a poor air conditioner, I'm not too fond of the sunshine and heat. Anywho, today is a different kind of day for different kind of reason. Today's review is for an audio book! I know it's not a big deal to some of you but I've been wanting to review an audio book so bad and now I have! My Newbie-ness is showing I know. Are any of you guys avid audio book fans? Any recommendations for me?
About Kimberly Lewis:
Born and raised on the Eastern Shore of Maryland, this country girl caught the creative bug at an early age, doing everything from drawing to writing short stories.
After rediscovering her love of romance novels, Kimberly found the inspiration to pick up a pen—or in this case a laptop—and began writing her first novel. Since then she has continued to write and credits her husband and her wonderfully crazy family and friends, who with their love and joking demeanor provide her with the ideas that inspire her novels.
In her spare time she enjoys reading, horseback riding, and spending time with her amazing family.
About Tiffany Williams:
Tiffany Williams graduated from the University of North Texas with a Bachelor's in Theatre with an emphasis on acting and directing, plus a minor in psychology - so watch out! She may just analyze YOU!
Tiffany has been working professionally since 1993 as an actor; director; producer; costume, sound and prop designer; stage manager; technical assistant; box office assistant; board member; business manager, production manager and college professor for theatres such as the Shakespeare Festival of Dallas, Dallas Theater Center, Berkshire Theatre Festival, Undermain Theatre, Project X, Theatre Britain, Audacity Productions, and Collin Theatre Center; and has pursued additional studies at the Kennedy Center, Folger Theatre, the National Stage Combat Workshop and Fairfax Public Access. She also provided voice-overs for plays, phone messaging services, and training videos.
Tiffany is the author of the children's play, ‘The Great Texas Treasure Hunt’. She is an eight-time winner of a Collin Theatre Center Award and received the 2004 Unsung Heroine Award at Collin College.
She has directed numerous productions of ‘The Vagina Monologues’ which raised monies for Hope's Door, Victims Outreach and the Dallas County Sexual Assault Coalition. She now does fundraising for the Huntington’s Disease Society of America. Since moving to Virginia to be with the man she has loved since her sophomore year in high school, she has been narrating audiobooks. Working with her husband and being home with the kids has been awesome! That is until the youngest refuses to nap.
Format: audio (provided by author in exchange for an honest review)
Publisher: Airbending Media Productions, LLC
Release Date: April 15, 2015
Narrated By: Tiffany Williams
He may not be a cowboy… But that won’t stop him from wrangling her heart.
Chase O’Donnell is the proud new owner of the Caldwell Ranch—or maybe he’s not so proud. Annoyed would be more like it. After receiving the news of his inheritance, Chase’s first thought is to sell the ranch and be done with it—until one night with a beautiful blonde at a local honky-tonk has him changing his tune…
Norah McKade is surprised by her instant attraction to the handsome new stranger, and even more surprised when she finds out he’s her new neighbor. But with Chase only being in town for a short amount of time, Norah determines getting tangled up with him a bad idea and promptly places Chase in the friend zone.
Although a bit reluctant, Chase agrees to Norah’s terms—but he’s not about to deny or ignore the fact that there’s more between them than just sexual attraction. He’ll have to pull out all the stops to get her to change her mind and prove to her that it wouldn’t be such a bad thing for her to fall in love with him.
City boy Chase O’Donnell has just inherited Caldwell Ranch and he’s none too pleased. Intending to sell the place as quickly as possible and get back home, he stops by the local honky tonk for a beer where he meets Norah McKade. Suddenly going back to the city isn’t as appealing as it was before.
Norah knows Chase is only in town long enough to sell the ranch he inherited so getting involved with him would be a bad idea. Even if she is attracted to him. Since she can’t seem to keep away from him, she places him in the friend zone thinking that will keep her from making a mistake. As the days go by, Chase and Norah start to realize that their attraction is only getting stronger even as Chase’s time in the small Texas town dwindles down.
Norah was my first book by Kimberly Lewis and my first audio book review so I’m going to break it down into two parts: Story review and narrator review.
As far as stories go, this one was pretty solid and entertaining. The whole city mouse/country mouse theme is one that doesn’t come around to my review pile that often. Lewis did a fine job of illustrating the differences between Chase and Norah’s upbringings without pitting them against each other.
Chase didn’t seem to see the appeal of living away from the lights and the noise of Dallas but with Norah he began to see things in a new light. I liked that even though Chase was from the city he wasn’t a snotty know it all who put down country living. Though that may have had more to do with Norah’s presence. He was kind, generous and put off that good guy/boy next door kind of vibe when Norah friend zoned him. However, all bets were off and the rough and tough guy came out to play once he was sure he wanted Norah as more than just a friend. I liked both sides of him. He wasn’t perfect, he made some pretty stupid calls throughout the book but who wants a perfect hero anyway right?
As the country mouse, Norah was tougher and smarter than others thought she was. Growing up with brothers has made her wiser to the way men think and how to handle them. I loved her tough girl persona combined with her inner vulnerability and how she gave as good as she got. I never felt that she let Chase walk all over her. Part of Norah’s charm I felt, was her family. Her brothers were fun and they of course displayed that protective streak all the while hassling her because of course, that’s what brothers do to their sisters. Their interactions were priceless and gave me a glimpse into Norah’s everyday life and relationships with those around her.
While there were a few obstacles in Chase and Norah’s road to happiness, the author didn’t overdo it. The conflicts were resolved fairly easily and the conclusion wrapped things up quite nicely if a bit hurriedly. As far as the actual relationship between the two, don’t expect a lot of hot and heavy scenes as they’re mostly implied no graphic details. So pretty light on the heat scale.
My one complaint about Norah overall was that it dragged in some areas and made the story longer than it should have been. I think there were some scenes that could have been cut out completely to preserve the flow and pace of the plot. Though it didn’t dull my enjoyment of the story or the characters themselves.
Narration Thoughts: This was my first “grown up” audio book, meaning that it was the first time that I had heard an audio book with adult content. Don’t laugh, I’m not trying to sound like a prude, just a newbie! Norah was narrated by Tiffany Williams who had a pleasant enough voice and made it easy for me to get into the story after I got used to hearing Chase’s lines in a feminine voice (Hey in my mind I change the voices when I’m reading lines!). Williams’ enunciation was crisp and clear, no mumbling or confusion about what was happening. I definitely had to adjust to having someone else read a book to me instead of me reading it myself.
Final Verdict: Norah is pretty predictable with its city boy/country girl romance but that didn’t take away from my enjoyment of a light romance. It was a new experience for me with this being an audio book review but it’s one I’d love to repeat again and again.
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