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review 2018-03-22 22:19
The Shadow Series- Book 1...
Wake of Vultures - Lila Bowen

I LOVED this story! It's going on my 10* favorites shelf. I think you absolutely have to listen to the audio to get the full experience of Nettie Lonesome aka Nat aka Rhett.


On the surface it's a dark and gritty, western fantasy but down deep it's a whole lot more then that. The author touches on quite a few serious topics-gender identity; sexual orientation, racism, cultural identity, slavery etc.


The entire story was just so well written too. If you haven't read it, you should definitely add it the audio to your 'TBR-Now' pile.


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review 2018-03-22 17:09
The Demon You Know - Julie Kenner

Enjoyable short story about a demon-hunting mom and her teenage daughter. No knowledge of the series is needed to enjoy. It's short and to the point - reminiscent of a Buffy episode. Narration was well done. Narrator does great job switching between mom and daughter as point-of-view. All voices age and gender appropriate.


My Rating: B

Narration: B+

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review 2018-03-21 21:24
#Audiobook Review: Axel by Grace Burrowes
Axel - Grace Burrowes

Axel opens with Axel recently returning home from the holidays at his brother’s home (Matthew, previous book). He is called to his closest neighbor’s home in the middle of the night because Mrs. Stoneleigh found her elderly husband shot dead in his study. Presuming it was suicide, she’s a bit shocked when Axel, the neighbor and Magistrate, tells her it was murder. 


To keep her safe from potential threats, Axel invites Abby to stay at his home while he solves her late husband’s murder. Soon the pair strike up a genuine friendship and uncover several crimes committed by the late Stoneleigh himself. With propriety saying they should stay apart, can Abby and Axel accept their love and move forward?


Axel is the third book in the Jaded Gentleman series, but the fourth I’ve read. I don’t know if the formula of the books (unconventional woman, jaded gentleman) started to wear on me or if it was just this story, but I didn’t find Axel to be as engaging as the other three books. I did enjoy that the mystery opens this one. And what a mystery it is - murder! It lended a bit of urgency to the storyline. However, things really slowed down shortly after the start. While normally I enjoy the slower pace of the series, I got a bit frustrated with this one. At only a third of the way into the story, I was able to see the foul play afoot, and I just want the story to move forward. Unfortunately, Axel has a way of giving extra insight and taking a meandering path to make his points. Additionally, the climax of the mystery was overly complicated and unnecessarily drawn-out.


Mr. Langton’s performance was once again perfect in tempo and cadence for the story at hand. However, I noticed a distinct change in the voices of both Matthew and Sir Nick, and although those characters are found only in supporting roles, I was annoyed every time their parts came up in the story.  


Overall, Axel is a good story, albeit a bit long and drawn-out. After listening to four books, the series has run its course for now. (I started with book 4 of 4). Although each had a unique story, the formula was very much the same. The long, drawn out pace of this one got to me at times. But I genuinely enjoyed both Axel and Abby. I loved their dialogue and joint discovery of love and pleasure. The mystery of who killed her husband and why was a little too convoluted and led to some of my bother.


My Rating: B/B-

Narration: B/B-

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review 2018-03-21 21:07
#Audiobook Review: Matthew by Grace Burrowes
Matthew: Jaded Gentlemen Series, Book 2 - Tantor Audio,Grace Burrowes,James Langton

Picking up shortly after the conclusion of Thomas, Matthew opens with Thomas’s sister Theresa and her daughter Pricilla taking care of his estate while Thomas is away on his honeymoon travels. Running into difficulties with a mare, Theresa calls on Thomas’s neighbor, Matthew. Both Theresa and Matthew are lonely soles (she spending 8 years in self-inflicted exile, he the widower magistrate with bothersome in laws), and the pair strike an early friendship.


Following the mold of the preceding book, Matthew tells the tale of an unconventional woman who defies the times and a jaded gentleman who discovers a new joy in life with the help of the right woman. I like Theresa a lot. I like that despite the hardship of her past and the unkindness of her brother, her only living relative, she remains kind-hearted and gentle. Matthew is a true gentleman who recognizes the wrongs places upon Theresa, and defends her every action to both her brother and to Theresa. Through his love, she learns to accept her own faults and appreciate the person she’s become. 


The only real negative I had was with Priscilla, who is mostly lovely and an excellent supporting character. However, the author shares a few sections from her point of view, and she is entirely too astute for to be an eight-year-old. Although her observations are spot on, I just didn’t like that they came from an eight-year-old.


Once again, Mr. Langton provides the narration for the tale. His voices, expressions, and characterizations have become familiar and enjoyable. His cadence is well-suited for the slower-paced and historically-set romance. 


Even though Matthew is the second book in the Jaded Gentlemen series, it’s the third title I’ve listened to, and I continue to enjoy the titles. The book was delightful and lovely. I like that Theresa and Matthew find love early on, and it’s solving the mystery that delays the HEA.


My Rating: B+

Narration: B+

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review 2018-03-21 20:38
#Audiobook Review: Lake Silence by Anne Bishop
Lake Silence - Alexandra Harris,Anne Bishop

Spinning off from and taking place several months after the conclusion of the original Others series, Lake Silence shifts from the activities of the Lakeside Courtyard, to a human settlement, Sproing, located in the Finger Lakes region of the Wild Country. The story centers on Vicki DeVine, a recently divorced human who received a rundown, rustic “campground” known as the Jumble in Sproing as her settlement. After suffering ten years of emotional and mental abuse by her ex, Vicki enjoys a quiet life rebuilding her property. However, when her tenant, Aggie Crowe (a member of the Crowguard), discovers a dead body on the adjacent property, Vicki and her lodge become the center of much attention, with Vicki a suspect. Soon Vicki finds herself entangled in a fight with her ex and his partners to keep the Jumble. And Vicki also discovers she has a number of Other allies, bringing her face-to-face with the predators living around Sproing.


Lake Silence introduces readers to an entirely new set of characters, location, and a new species of Other; however, there is mention of a few key players from the original series. And although the book doesn’t open with the “history of the world” as did the previous books, there is enough backstory and history woven into the plot that a newcomer to the series could enjoy the book without having read the first five books (but you should!) The narrative is first person when shared by Vicki, with all other characters shared in third person. There is a bit of jumping back and forth between characters and locations, with each perspective adding a piece to the larger picture.


I was a bit apprehensive when starting Lake Silence, because I had grown to love the residents of Lakeside and was concerned I wouldn’t like moving away from Meg, Simon, and the gang. I’m happy to report that my concerns were for naught. I quickly became attached to Vicki, Aggie, and the other residents of Sproing. The story starts with the same premise as the original series: a damaged girl/woman being hunted/harassed, while the Others, Intuits, and humans rally to protect her. Yet, even with the similarities, the story is fresh, exciting, and engrossing. Vicki may not be able to stand up for herself, but she is smart and understands what is happening to and around her. I enjoyed watching her grow and strengthen over the course of the book. Through the development of friendships with both humans and Others, Vicki develops a sense of self and learns to better deal with the abusive tactics used by her ex and his cronies. 


As with the original series, Alexandra Harris provides the narration for Lake Silence. Her performance is familiar, yet different, and Ms. Harris is the voice of the series for me. I like that I never was confused that I was listening to the characters from earlier books, yet each voice still felt well-known. Vicki is different than Meg and her voice was older, more mature, yet still tentative when anxious. The Crow and Sanguinati voices are similar to previous books. Additionally, many of the Others are more primitive in this area-unused to human interaction-and their voices and speech patterns mimic this. 


In the end, I found Lake Silence an thrilling and very enjoyable story. There is some of the same, but enough differences from the original series to make it engaging and not repetitive. While I was concerned I wouldn’t like the change in location, meeting a whole new set of characters was exciting, and I’ve already become attached to several. Vicky is a work in progress; she did some growing, but has a lot more to do to heal the wounds her ex inflicted, and I hope we will see more of her and the settlement of Sproing in future titles.


Story: A-

Narration: A


Review copy provided by Penguin Random House Audio

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