written by Kacey Shea
narrated by Savannah Peachwood
In preparation for accepting this audiobook ARC I went and read a few DNF and 3-star reviews on Goodreads. One included a spoiler of something that, in my opinion, is a game-changer. Or rather, a genre-changer! Despite the HEA and the love, this book – in my utterly amateurish opinion – is Chick Lit, and not Romance.
I don’t mind spoilers. Sometimes I even look them up on purpose. If I know in which direction we’re going, I feel I can enjoy some stories more and focus on the details better. But I can’t say how this book would have felt to me without being aware of this twist towards the second half. I can very well imagine that I would have been confused. But I also might have been elated about this turn. Spoilers… a blessing and a curse 😀
Kacey Shea lets us accompany her heroine through the struggles of being 22 and building up her personal and professional life. And I can say that I have read Romance novels before that made me think: “I wish she’d end up with someone else!” I wouldn’t have been upset about it. But this twist is something “the romance reader” doesn’t usually expect. Now, surprises can be good, but it’s a fine line to walk.
The story is wonderful and captivating and I greatly enjoyed it! The audiobook is over 15 hours long and told in a diary-like style that flowed very nicely. Callie is a quirky and likable person. Not everything she does or says is perfect or right. But it only makes her feel human and real to me. I admit I kind of wish I had a friend like her. If only to have someone who understands that brain farts don’t necessarily mean that you’re ditzy.
If you know me, you know I have no patience for stupid heroines. Callie does one majorly stupid thing right in the beginning, foreshadowing the turn her story takes after the first half of the book. She runs into a burning building to get a bra. Unforgivable, you say? Not really. I could forgive her for it. She has mild OCD and when one is standing in front of their burning house, one might feel kind of stressed. That can exacerbate symptoms. Her thought process and reasoning why it would be fine (e.g. that the bedroom is far away from the burning part) worked for me. And had she not stumbled, everything would have worked out. Yep, Kacey Shea literally tripped poor Callie up there!
Savannah Peachwood is a fantastic narrator. This was my first time listening to her but she’s a seasoned Romance narrator. She has a great array of voices and she transports Callie’s emotions so well. She pulled me right in and I enjoyed this audiobook so much!
This book is definitely a recommendation. Not only for the Chicago Fire fans among us 😉 It’s a captivating, emotional story and the audiobook production is absolutely top-notch. Go and meet Callie!
Also, just for the record, I’ve always been pro-burning bras. But hey, no judgment if you like the support. 😀
Thank you, Kacey Shea, for giving me a free copy of your audiobook! I accepted it in exchange for an honest review./