Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5
Sometimes love takes balls.
Newly retired championship footballer Simon Wood is taking on his next challenge. His plan for a charity to provide funding for underprivileged children to pursue football as a career has passed its first hurdle: he has backers and an executive consultant. Now it’s time to get the ball rolling.
Lucien Morel, heir to the multibillion-euro Morel Corporation, is shocked—and thrilled—to learn his father has volunteered him as consultant to a fledgling football charity. Better yet, the brains behind it all is heartthrob Simon Wood, his teenage idol and crush.
Although Simon and Lucien get off on the wrong foot, it’s not long before they’re getting along like a house on fire—sparks included. But with the charity under public scrutiny, can their romance thrive?
The Athlete and the Aristocrat by Louisa Masters turned out to be a heartwarming and very engaging contemporary romance, one I think I might have initially enjoyed more in eBook format. The reason being the narrator. Seb Yarrick who narrates the story is english, and while I have listened to entire novels by english narrators, I never realized that the tone (light, baritone , tenor) made a difference to me. Turns out yes it does.
The deeper the voice the easier it is to engage my attention apparently. Here Seb Yarrick’s light, pleasant even tones let my mind wander away from the story often. Worse because, he had to act out other British accents (which being American I couldn’t tell you which part of the country they came from , that’s like separating Jersey from the Bronx perhaps to someone in London. On top of that throw on several French accents as well. Yes I came close to just wanting to read the story and give up on the audio.
But perseverance or just the fact that I didn’t have the ebook at hand, made me continue and eventually my “American ear” got a handle on it and Seb’s intonations and narration.
The story and characters themselves are lovely. Especially the footballers as they say over there. Everyone is well defined. The locations visited add a richness to the story and a firm foundation to the characters and their level in society and business. While each was working towards bringing together this terrific charity and finding ground for a relationship, I liked the realistic touches of also finding out that they needed to work on their basis for being bilingual, the understanding that its two languages in a relationship as well, switch homes and perhaps countries as well, and that sacrifices are necessary. That made it more realistic, even at for the rich and famous.
The payoff in the epilogue was everything. I just adored that and could see it so clearly. By then I barely noticed the accents and was lost in the emotion of the moment. I had come a long way in the journey with these men, their relationship and this narrator. I’m still loving it even now. And it lets me recommend this audio version for al who love contemporary romance and listening as well.
Cover Artist: Alexandria Corza. Nice job, love the background, with the ball branding exactly who the cover man is and what his profession is as well.
Audio Book Details:
Listening Length: 5 hours and 38 minutes
Program Type: Audiobook
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Audible.com Release Date: April 4, 2019
Language: English, English