Friday, October 25, 2013

Gone and Always On My Mind

Are you enjoying the cooler temperatures as fall makes it way back? Well, I’ve got two interesting audios to share with you today to help ward off those chilly temperatures.

GONE by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge

Gone CoverProtagonist Michael Bennett and his fun-loving clan return in GONE. While a follow-up to I, MICHAEL BENNETT, GONE is a standalone story.

Narrators Danny Mastrogiorgio and Henry Leyva do an excellent job bringing all the characters to life. Their mannerisms and cadence will hold you spellbound as the narration flows back and forth between them. 

Manuel Perrine is a ruthless drug dealer and charismatic leader who uses any means necessary to get what he wants. NYPD Detective Michael Bennett is the only US official ever to capture Perrine. But then something went terribly wrong and Perrine escaped. With a bounty on him and his family, the Bennetts are placed in witness protection.

Bennett, his 10 adopted children, his grandfather and the children’s nanny are relocated to a secluded California ranch where they live under assumed names and keep to themselves. Meanwhile, Perrine has started an all-out war killing off rival gangs and anyone who defies him.

As Perrine’s terror continues, the FBI ask Bennett to help in the hunt for the madman. Against his better judgment, Bennett leaves his family in the hands of FBI agents and returns to search for Perrine. As Bennett closes in on Perrine, little does he know Perrine is closing in on his family.

This is an intriguing story filled with quiet, fun family moments followed by all-out adrenaline action. The authors detail descriptions of the setting places you in the middle of the action. The scenes flow from Perrine at his worst to quiet family time for the Bennetts depicting the actions of good and evil existing at the same time. While some of the actions by the Bennett children seem unreasonable given they’re in witness protection, it also plays to the fact children will be children no matter what.

This audio has an added bonus – sound effects to really enhance your listening pleasure. There is gunfire, sounds of struggles and even a bit of heightening music to keep you on the edge of your seat. Just when you think everything is fine, another twist sends you spinning out of control wonder how will this end.

Returning fans of Michael Bennett will enjoy the outcome of this story and the detective’s drive for justice. New fans won’t be left in the dark with references to prior events. This is an action-packed story with family, humor and romance sprinkled all about.

Gone by James Patterson and Michael Ledwidge, A Michael Bennett Novel, Performed by Danny Mastrogiorgio and Henry Leyva, Hachette Audio, @2013, ISBN: 978-1611130393, Unabridged, 7 Discs, Listening Time: Approximately 8 Hours 

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

ALWAYS ON MY MIND by Jill Shalvis

Always coverReturning to the quaint town of Lucky Harbor is always fun and can also be a delight for newcomers visiting for the first time.

Narrator Annie Greene does a wonderful job as she breathes life into all the zany characters of author Jill Shalvis’ latest Lucky Harbor novel, ALWAYS ON MY MIND. Greene’s vocalizations gives each character their own distinct voice. Her cadence draws in you and holds you as the romance blooms.

Leah Sullivan left Lucky Harbor several years ago to study and become a chef. She gets her big break on a reality cooking show, but things don’t always go as you want. At the end of the show, Leah returns to Lucky Harbor to help her grandmother with her pastry shop. She plans to leave town before the reality show’s conclusion.

Meanwhile, her best friend Jack Harper is still in Lucky Harbor serving as a firefighter. When Leah left, she broke Jack’s heart. He still remains friends with her, but can’t let himself get any closer.

When circumstances throw the two friends back together, things get a little sticky. Their attraction begins to grow despite the fact both have plans that don’t include the other. Throw friends and family into the mixture and you have a fun adventure.

Shalvis has created realistic characters that are determined and reliable, yet have flaws and worries of their own. She blends romance, humor and family into a delightful story that will have you smiling. The setting is beautifully described making the reader/listener feel they are in the midst of the journey.

ALWAYS ON MY MIND is the eighth installment in the Lucky Harbor series, but is a standalone story. The references to prior events will not cause new readers/listeners to be lost in the story, but provides fun reminders for returning fans.

Always on My Mind by Jill Shalvis, A Lucky Harbor Novel – Book #8, Performed by Annie Greene, Hachette Audio, @2013, Unabridged, Digital Download, Listening Time: 9 Hours and 29 Minutes 

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

Thanks everyone for stopping by today. I hope I’ve entice you to try one or both of these titillating audios.

1 comment:

  1. Mason - You've always got such a nice variety of books on your blog. And yet, even in these two quite different stories, it's about family and relationships. Very cool


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