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5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 05-15-18


OMG this is soooooo amazing and now i need to buy the rest of the series on audio. Oh please if u haven't read this u must must must!! ebook, audio, handpuppets, whatever. READ IT!!!!

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4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 04-16-18

When this ended I literally said "awwww."

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

Yes, because it was cute and well done. I enjoyed the story itself and the narration.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I liked ALL the characters, except the ex. Yuck! LOL

What about John Steinkamp’s performance did you like?

His voice was clean and clear, and I thought perfectly suited to this book.

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

Laugh and I just simply enjoyed it.

Any additional comments?

A complimentary audio was provided in exchange for an honest review.

This will be my second book by Matt Burlingame, and the two couldn't be more different from each other, lol. My first book by him was the suspense/thriller BooFF, which some might classify as horror (I do not), and then my second is this totally cute and sweet short story romance featuring Martin and Alec, two guys who fall in love in a week. I know, I know. Insta-love, pft. But LISTEN!!! This was cute!!! So, so cute!

Go with me here. I haven't gone off on as far a tangent as you might think. Have you ever seen the movie The Holiday with Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet? Well, I have, and for those who haven't you can see the movie preview online. Diaz's characters works in Hollywood and in her head she constantly hears a narrator narrating her life, just like a movie narrator would. It's funny, really. Anyway, Catch A Falling Star's audio narration reminded me of that "movie" narration.

I don't know if that will be the case for everyone, and it wasn't for the whole book, exactly, mostly the beginning. And it totally worked for me!! The narrators voice isn't one you would think of for romance, but I just LOVED IT!! I thought his voice just worked so well for this story, the characters and the writing.

Now I ask you - was that tangent really far out into left field or what?

As for the story itself I just thought it was adorable. Martin has been a quiet, reserved guy, who some might call boring. But he's nice and deserves a shot. Alec is a performer who - based on what we learn towards the end - had led a somewhat quiet life as well. He didn't date and while he had friends and was nice towards his fans, he too kept to himself like Martin. When these two meet, instant sparks and with the help of Martins' brother Daniel, Martin is spruced up to not look like such a fuddy duddy. But Alec didn't need Martin to be spruced up. Oh no. Alec already liked Martin for himself and after some comedic (albeit cringe worthy) moments, these guys get their HEA. [Martin is a pushover and there are some not so great things that happen in the week these guys know each other, but in the end Martin gets his spine straight and uses it but good! (hide spoiler)]

I do recommend this and give it 3.75 stars, rounded up to 4. Narration is also a 4. :) Good job everyone!

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-25-18

This was ok

Would you recommend this book to a friend? Why or why not?

Not the audio, but I might recommend the book itself.

Would you be willing to try another book from Kate Hastings and Amelia Oliver ? Why or why not?

I would because I don't think this first foray was a fair shot at their writing.

Would you be willing to try another one of JJ Jenness’s performances?

I don't think so.

Could you see Almost Easy being made into a movie or a TV series? Who should the stars be?

I could see this as a movie, but I have no idea who would play the characters.

Any additional comments?

A complimentary audio was provided via Audiobook Boom in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

First, I've not read the series this novella is part of, and I don't know if you need to since the story is really just about the MCs Nolan and Rupert, although the other series characters do show up (duh! lol).

Not only is this my first book by this author, but this is also my first book narrated by JJ Jenness. Which makes this novella a little hard to judge because overall this book was just okay for me. I decided to request a copy because I read so many great reviews about the series in general, and Almost Easy itself. I loved the excitement of other reviewers comments, but alas I can't say I felt the same. I feel the narration is what held me back from completely enjoying this story because the narrator didn't change his voice between the two MCs - they sounded exactly that same. I couldn't believe it. If ever a book could have benefited from dual narration, this would have been it. JJ didn't have a bad voice, and he did express emotion, etc, when the situation called for it. But I wanted the characters to be their own person, and unfortunately the narration didn't give me that. What I can say is he did bring extra sound effects to the story that I liked, such as when a character was talking on a cell phone, the tone (special techno mastery) came across in just the right way. I liked that it sounded completely different from a normal speaking voice. Well done with that!

As for the story itself, as I said earlier - it was okay for me. Had I been able to read this I think I could have bumped my rating up because then I could have brought out the characters voice that I wanted. It was hard to follow the storyline because I kept getting distracted by the voice speaking. But strictly speaking I think the story is good, if a little dramatic at the end. The whole thing with deliberate sabotage and the guy (Will?) who is really out to get Nolan and Rupert because they are gay and he doesn't like gay people (thinks they are deviants), that was a little much for me. Although it's a realistic standpoint of too many people in this world. I still hated him for what he did and didn't like that part of the story at all (it felt like it was there just to add extra drama).

Overall I rate this with 3 stars, with the narration at 2 stars.

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3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-14-18

Overall I enjoyed the narration and story

Any additional comments?

A complimentary copy of the audio was provided in exchange for an honest review.

A listened to book 1 (Garrett) as well and I did enjoy that one more than Brent, but part of that is because I didn't feel like I got the chance to really know Brent and Calen. Overall the story was nice and entertaining and it was good to see more of the brothers, especially Garrett and his new sub Wyatt. ;) It's clear the author is leading us to the rest of the brothers who have their own stories, and I am okay with that. When the next story is introduced in the current story, sometimes it's not carried off well, because it ignores the current characters. Personally I found it hilarious when Bryce is being "grilled" by his brother about his clients. It's obvious he has feelings for the Dom and Sub pair, but he appears to be fighting it. I would LOVE the chance to read their story.

As for Brent and Caleb, their relationship started off weird to me because we don't get to fully experience their history on page. I would have preferred it if their scene history had been shown in real time and not in flash backs, and I would also have preferred it when they did come together in present time that there hadn't been so many games between them. They've known each other a long time and certainly should have had a sense already of who they were (in and out of the scene), but they kind of did a dance as if to be getting to know them in this new context.

Kenneth Obi is the narrator for books 1 & 2 and overall I enjoyed his narration, particularly Wyatt's. ;) Since the same narrator did do both books, it was a little hard to differentiate between Garrett and Brent. They both had deep voices and maybe I didn't notice in Garrett's book, but Brent's voice didn't come across as a natural tenor. It felt forced and it really took me out of the story. [When Brent "thought" or wasn't actually speaking, his voice was light and natural sounding, nothing like his characters voice when he actually was speaking, which sounded deep and unnatural. (hide spoiler)] Caleb's voice though was sweet and I enjoyed hearing him and his inner ramblings, lol.

Narration: 3.5 stars
Story: 3 stars

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5 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 03-10-18

Narration Award Winning. This story was awesome!!!

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

Yes, and I ha to many of my friends. Because the narration was soooooo awesome and I loved these characters and because I laughed. :D

What did you like best about this story?

Several things, like how Mac tried to kill Cal by tripping him as he is going down the stairs, or how Mac was playing ghost when the realtor was trying to show the house.

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

The voices!! I loved his voices for Mac and the realtor. Sooo great. His narration for all the characters was great, don't get me wrong, but I laughed so much during the realtors time.

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

Moved? No. This was a comedy so there wasn't anything really "moving" about this, but I did like the epilogue where Mac gives us an update on all the characters. That was nice.

Any additional comments?

A complimentary audio was provided in exchange for an honest review.

OMG, this book was AWESOME!!!! Seriously, if you like to laugh - this is the book to read/listen to (hint - the audio was amazingly wonderful and if you can, choose that option. ;) ). I found myself laughing - out loud!!!! - soooo many times. :D

Mac is a ghost, but that doesn't stop him from being a self-centered dramaqueen, lol. The reason he is a ghost isn't particularly relevant to the story, just know it wasn't foul play. He has left his entire estate to his ex, Cal, who is a broke (lives in his truck) "actor." Dewey is Mac's lawyer and has contacted Cal to iniherit the estate. Now that I've set the scene, let the fun begin!!

Mac - for whatever reason - hasn't moved on to wherever spirits go next. So, he decides to harass Cal and as the blurb says, tries to convince him to kill himself so they can be together forever. Ahh, the comedy. Mac is just a hoot!!! Yes is a selfish a-hole, but he's so, so, hmm, so selfish and crap, I don't know the word for what he is but I loved him!!! And Cal is adorable!! I loved to watch them interact with each other and the ghostbusting was just so gooooood!! I can't express to you how much I loved the haunting and ghostbusting. No there weren't any proton packs, but it was close. ;)

And Dewey, he is so cute and a little flustered around Cal, but part (if not most) of that is due to the fact that the Red Barn Players (local theatre group) is in need of Cal's money so they can finish their latest production. Dewey had kind of been put in charge of getting Cal to donate money and it leads to some interesting interactions, lol. :)

The narration - Award Winning. This was just so great. The voices for each character were so unique and done so well, I couldn't wait to get back to this audio. The realtor Cal hired to sell Mac's house - I just looooooooved her!!! She had the funniest voice and her reactions to the "haunting" are to - die - for!!

Please, oh pleeeeease tell me there is going to be a sequel. I MUST have more of Mac and Cal and Dewey and the whole gang.

I give this 5 big stars and 10 for the narration. ;)

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3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-27-18

Well written & my 1st by this author but not last

Any additional comments?

A complimentary copy of the audio book was provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.

I've had the ebook version in my possession for a while and who knows when I would have gotten to reading it. When the chance to review the audio book came about, I jumped on it because I KNEW I would finally get to it. :) This is my first book by this author and I really enjoyed it.

It's narrated by Gary Furlong and since this is an audio I guess I will start my review with his narration. It was good - perfect, no, but I did enjoy it. There were instances where I thought he could have put more emotion or emphasis into a scene, and given each MC a more unique voice, but overall I enjoyed his take on the book. He has a nice voice and I've been told his other narrations have accents and I would love to hear that! It's a real talent when listeners don't know which voice is real. ;)

As for the story itself I would have liked to have seen more of Rich and Jake together before the accident that separated them for 8 years. I did feel a connection between them but I would have been more invested and heartbroken about their separation had I been able to see them more early on in the book. Rich and Jake are already a couple when the story starts, and I don't mind that. What is missing, in my opinion, was the romance between them, the spark that started it all, and the camaraderie and shared interests that kept them together. It couldn't have just been riding and horses - there must have been something else besides sex too.

There is a lot going on with this story so I was never bored. I was anxious to hear how Rich and Jake were after the accident - they both were hurt, but Rich was really hurt. When the story continues with present day it's clear neither of them will ever fully recover from the accident, and Jake is very stubborn about admitting his limits. Rich is more accepting of his injuries and limitations and I think his acceptance helped Jake too because Rich wouldn't let Jake BS him.

This was a well written story and my first by this author, but it certainly won't be my last. I do recommend the story and if you have the chance to listen to the audio, it was pretty good too.

P.S. - Jake's dad might start off as a real homophobic jerk, but I never gave up hope that he could change.

Story - 3.75 stars.
Narration - 3.25 stars.

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4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-27-18

This is the type of story Joel Leslie excels at

Any additional comments?

I received a complementary copy of the audio book from the author via Audiobook Boom, in exchange for an honest review.

Story - 4 stars
Narration - 10 stars
Overall - 4.5 stars

This is the type of story Joel Leslie excels at narrating. His voice is so very well suited to the paranormal/shifter characters and the fact that he can just switch to another accent is not only cool, but flawless and just wow talented. I felt like this was a play or something because Leslie did NOT do a dry narration. He ACTED his ass off here, and I was completely drawn into these characters. If you want EMOTION in your books, this one has it for sure. If someone is scared, or hurt, or in pain or ecstasy (LOL) you know it simply by the narration, no additional descriptors are needed.

Now for the story itself, I personally enjoyed it, but I have a feeling not everyone will like it as much as I did. Sometime the over the top dramatics of a story just work for me. I love angst and drama in my stories - as long as they are done well and have a purpose to the overall story arc. To summarize the story briefly, Luca is a werewolf who finds a TRUE Omega mate (who happens to be male, and oh, yeah - human), and this fact means that Luca is now the Alpha King. Just to jump ahead briefly there is [mpreg and actual birthing on page (hide spoiler)], for those who like or don't like this in their shifter stories. Kit, the Omega, has known that Luca is his mate for years and has waited for him to find him. When they finally meet and recognize the other for who and what they are, they consummate their mating and declare their love for the other. It's clear they are both smitten with each other. However, when Luca overhears a conversation Kit has with his bodyguard, Luca misunderstands what Kit is saying and jumps to the conclusion that Kit is in love with this other man and basically has the reaction of "FUCK YOU," and turns a cold shoulder to Kit and basically treats him like he doesn't exist. Of course Kit notices this change in Luca and after a few other things happen, Kit runs away, heartbroken. Of course Luca eventually comes to his senses and hunts for Kit. I am telling you this because this is the type of overly dramatic dramatics that might turn some people away, but for me, I really liked it.

There is shifting on page, kidnapping, attempted murder, betrayal, an adorable younger sister, another attempted murder, enemies uniting as allies, very harsh and cruel treatment of human children (not really on page just the after effects), and bitterness from a twin who was born 7 minutes too late.

I really enjoyed this story and the narration and I 100% look forward to the next book in the series.

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4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-27-18

This is not a light romance

Any additional comments?

I was provided a complimentary copy of the audio by the narrator in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!

This series has been on my TBR pile for a while now, and I purchased Absolution, Salvation and Retribution maybe a year ago while they were on sale, and yet they stayed on that darn TBR pile collecting dust. When Joel Leslie offered an audio copy in exchange for a review, I jumped at the chance because I knew this would jump start me into reading this series.

First let me start by saying this is not a light romance. There is a lot of death and grief and trauma and violence in this story. If that's not your cuppa, you should probably skip this one as there are no unicorns frolicking in the fields here. :-D

Wow, where to start. I have not read book 1 yet, and I believe these are meant to be standalone novels, but I do think reading book 1 would have helped because I think certain elements are tied together. Regardless, I was fully able to immerse myself into this traumatic tale and feel connected to Ronan and Seth. The truth behind what happened to Seth's brother (and Ronan's fiancé) is truly tragic [gay bashing (hide spoiler)] and mark's a turning point in Ronan's life - from trauma surgeon to avenger. With the help of another, Ronan is able to exact revenge on those responsible for his fiancé's death, and thru the years, Ronan drafts others like him who have suffered tragedy with no legal justice. This new life has changed Ronan in so many ways that he hardly recognizes the man he used to be.

Seth, who is young and innocent, has been in love with Ronan for years, never once believing Ronan could return those feelings. And Ronan does his best to stay away from Seth because he doesn't want to taint Seth with the blood on his hands (vigilante justice). This was a true roller coaster of emotions and the action is non-stop. I am excited to go back and read book 1 to see what I have missed and then I will continue with this series.

Joel Leslie did a great job with the narration. I personally think this book would have benefited from dual narration, allowing Seth's character to have a younger voice (not as deep or gravelly and Joel's is) and give better separation between Ronan and Seth. But all in all, wonderful job - the emotions and tensions were all there, I knew what the characters were feeling because it came across in Leslie's voice.

4 stars.

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4 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-20-18

I can't wait for book 2!!!!!!!!!!!

Would you listen to How to Bang a Billionaire again? Why?

Yes, because it was awesome!

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

It made me laugh more than I expected.

Any additional comments?

A complimentary copy of the audio was provided in exchange for an honest review.

I love Alexis Hall and when I saw How to Bang a Billionaire was going to be the latest title by this author, I immediately added it to my list of "want to read." First the cover, yes it's not a flashy in your face cover, but it spoke volumes for me. I like to see a man who can put himself together nicely and this cover shows me who Caspian Hart is. Or at least one side of him. The blurb; do I really need to read a blurb for an Alexis Hall book? Nope, but I did anyway because I like to torture myself by reading blurbs to books I don't own yet and dreaming of the day they become mine. ;) I was sold on the line: "Man Least Likely to Set the World on Fire."

Let me start with the narration because I am a BIG Joel Leslie fan, and have listened to so many books narrated by him. At first I was a little puzzled because the book is based in England, and Joel Leslie is not English. But then I started to listen to the narration and was like, duh!!! He is one of the most talented narrators I have found who can do so many accents! I never questioned it after that and in fact forgot who was narrating because I was just lost in the voice. Joel did an incredible job of brining these characters to life and I can't wait for the chance to listen to the rest of this series. I can't picture anyone else doing the narration now.

As for the story, I will admit it had heavy vibes of Fifty Shades of Grey, but there were a few differences as well. I didn't mind so much the parallel to Fifty, and in fact had been hoping an MM version would come out ever since I read the Fifty trilogy. At times it was a little off putting how similar the books were, but for the most part I was able to distance myself from it. Overall this was a very enjoyable story, and funny!! I did NOT expect to laugh so much reading this book. Arden St. Ives is a college student who doesn't know what he is going to do when he graduates, and he can panic with the best of them, over anything and everything. His antics kept me going and the talks he had with himself about killed me because he would go round and round in circles over a possible scenario and drive himself crazy.

His relationship with Caspian Hart is...complicated. I was entertained by how they "met" but their continued interactions were a little weird. I didn't see what Caspian saw in Arden, what drew them together. Caspian is a reserved man who is "HOT", but distant. Arden is immature and suffers from crying jags at the littlest things. I can definitely see where Alexis was going with these characters, but I wish Arden was a little more self assured and little less drama queen. There were so may times I wish Arden had been more assertive in what he wanted from Caspian, most specifically in bed. Arden is completely open to some kinky sex, but is afraid to come right out and say or demand this or Caspian. True, Caspian isn't even open to discussing being kinky and I can see how this would make Arden a little hesitant to broach this subject, yet at the same time, Arden isn't 100% happy with the situation as it is so... I felt he should have at least tried harder to make Caspian understand. There were a few other situations I felt Arden was too submissive about his own wants and desires, but they were minor things.

I can't wait to read the next book in this series because as a whole, I was totally and completely infatuated with this story. This ended on a higher relationship note between the two MCs and they actually talked about their feelings and wants and needs. It felt like a true beginning now between them, whereas the rest of the story felt like a hesitant prologue. I felt like they were more connected and in tune with each other and I was left with so much hope for them to finally find what they want and need.

Story 4 stars
Narration 5 stars

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3 of 3 people found this review helpful

3 out of 5 stars

Reviewed: 02-20-18

I look forward to listening to this narrator again

Any additional comments?

A complimentary copy of the audio was provided in exchange for an honest review.

This is my first read by this author and it wasn't bad. I thought Wyatt was really cute and I really enjoyed how he acted in the beginning (and the rest too). The story is told from alternating POVs and when it came time to hear Wyatt's thoughts about the time he spent in Garrett's presence at the office, it was just too funny. All Wyatt wanted to do was kneel and submit, and it's the way he telegraphed his desires internally and to his best friend, I just laughed. He was so flustered and flummoxed! If he had only known that Garrett would have more than welcomed that behavior - how much time they could have saved!

Overall this was an ok story and had some good moments. I loved the relationship between these two and felt they were perfect for a each other. A match made only in fiction romance heaven. :) The narration I thought was the best part, and I don't think I would have enjoyed this story as much if I had been reading it. Sometimes it's hard to tell though, so it's possible I would have enjoyed the story equally had I read it.

Kenneth Obi is a new to me narrator as well, and I enjoyed his voice. He really was able to carry off these characters and their BDSM lifestyle. His voice for each man was distinct and I didn't wonder who was speaking. This was a well done production and I look forward to hearing this narrator again. And I wouldn't mind if that was with book 2. ;)

Narration: 4 stars
Story: 3 stars

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