A Lila Audiobook Review: The Virgin Manny (The Mannies #1) by Amy Lane and John Solo (Narrator)

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Rating: 3.5 stars out of 5

Growing up and falling in love…

Sometimes family is a blessing and a curse. When Tino Robbins is roped into helping his sister deliver premade dinners when he should be studying for finals, he’s pretty sure it’s the latter! But one delivery might change everything.

Channing Lowell’s charmed life changes when his sister dies and leaves him her seven-year-old son. He’s committed to doing what’s best for Sammy… but he’s going to need a lot of help. When Tino lands on his porch, Channing is determined to recruit him to Team Sammy.

Tino plans to make his education count—even if that means avoiding a relationship—but as he falls harder and harder for his boss, he starts to wonder: Does he have to leave his newly forged family behind in order live his promising tomorrow?

The Virgin Manny is a cute, trope filled love story. I really liked the way Tino and Channing met and how their relationship grew from there. This is a slow-burn story that can be considered May-December even when the age gap was only ten years.

As any other Dreamspun book, this story has very over-the-top events and reactions from the characters. It’s a feel-good tale even when the events that brought the MCs together were nothing to be happy about. Everyone is content with the new little family and there’s minimal to no angst.

There’s a bit of mystery added which gives the book a soap opera feel. I don’t think it was necessary, but it added to the story’s charm. The last part was too slow, but as a whole, the story works great.

John Solo, as always, did a nice job bringing all the characters to life. I enjoyed the different cadence between Tino and Channing and appreciated how well the female voices were integrated.

The cover by Bree Archer shows the main idea behind the story, but it’s a bit generic and stereotypical.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner | iTunes | Audible

Audiobook Details:

Narrator: John Solo
Length: 6 hours 14 minutes
Published: February 14, 2017 (Audio Edition) by Dreamspinner Press
ASIN: B06WLJTZW4
Edition Language: English

Series: The Mannies
Book #1: The Virgin Manny

 

A Lila Audiobook Review: Suddenly Yours by Jacob Z. Flores and John Solo (Narrator)

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5

suddenly-yours-audiobookWhat happens in Vegas doesn’t always stay in Vegas.

Cody Hayes is having one epic morning-after. The hangover following a Vegas bachelor party is nothing new to him, and neither is the naked man in his bed.

His apparent marriage is a different story.

Carefully plotting every detail of his life carried Julian Canales to a Senate seat as an openly gay man. A drunken night of Truth or Dare isn’t like him… and neither is marrying a man he just met. He’d get an annulment, but the media has gotten wind of his hasty nuptials. If Julian’s political career is going to survive, he has to stay married to a man who’s his opposite in every way.

Now he must convince Cody that all they need to do is survive a conservative political rival, a heartbroken ex, their painful pasts… and an attraction neither man can fight.

Suddenly Yours is a classic day after tale. Waking up married suited Cody, but challenged Julian’s well-planned life. At the same time, they balanced each other. Something that’s evident from the very beginning. The opening scene sets the stage for the rest of their relationship and gives the readers hope of a happily ever after.

This is when my problem with the story starts. I’m not a fan of stories that go back in time until they meet again later down the road. Prologues are fine as set ups, but having to wait to see how everything happens doesn’t work for me. My lack of patience makes me skim through the pages. I wanted to see their future together, not their past.

When we are finally back in real time, the story moves smoothly. I did enjoy Julian’s and Cody’s banter and easy friendship. I think they were right for each other. I like how Cody took charge and how Julian tries to do his best for his new husband.

The secondary characters fit the story line and added to the couple’s troubles. Their lack of trust in love feeds from them but in the end, they are surprised when the realization of their relationship catches up with them. There’s no one more clueless about their love than Cody and Julian.

John Solo is one of my favorite narrators and he didn’t disappoint. The mirth behind Cody’s words was evident and the rest of the voice transitions flow easily.

Another cover by Bree Archer. The model works perfectly for the story and the standard Dreamspun Desires background complemented the quirkiness of the book.

Sales Links:  Dreamspinner |  Audible | iTunes

Audiobook Details:

Narrator: John Solo
Length: 6 hours and 33 minutes

Published:  December 7, 2016 (Audio Edition) by Dreamspinner Press
ASIN: B01MQSQ07S
Edition Language: English

 

Series:  One Fine Day
Book #1: Undercover Boyfriend
Book #2: Suddenly Yours

 

A Barb the Zany Old Lady Review: Places in Time (Time Is Eternity) by Cardeno C. and John Solo (Narrator)

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Rating: 3.75 stars out of 5

places-in-time-audiobookThis audiobook was very short but managed to pack a lot of the back story of the many years that best friends Ethan Baker and Jude Harrison have spent together by using a twist on A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.

Ethan is a famous, award-winning actor, considered to be the “Sexiest Man Alive” and Jude is an extremely talented, but equally introverted, musician who prefers to stay well out of the limelight as he supports his friend’s career.

What Ethan learns late one night, as he’s on his way to Jude’s house, is the extent of just how much support Jude has given him over the years. It also finally dawns on him just how much Jude loves him and how much he loves Jude.

I enjoyed the way the author intertwined their lives together, allowing enough leeway for Ethan to be clueless while we readers were seeing what was really happening.  I also enjoyed the Dickens-like twist to the story.  And the narration of John Solo added to my enjoyment as he gave each of the characters a distinct voice. 

What I didn’t enjoy as much was the quick jump to anal sex by someone who didn’t realize he was in love with a man until a few hours before.  It just didn’t feel right. In fact, this is one of those stories that would have benefited from a fade to black sex scene.  And for someone who normally enjoys this writer’s way with words in the bedroom, that’s saying a lot.  She does hot and sizzling very well, but in this case, it didn’t click for me. 

However, if you are looking for a pleasant way to spend your day, by all means pick this one up. 

Cover art is eye catching and warm.

Sales Links

Audiobook Details:

Audible Audio, Length: 1 hr and 41 mins
Published June 27th 2016 by The Romance Authors, LLC (first published May 31st 2012)
ASINB01HIJ0F78
Edition LanguageEnglish
SeriesTime Is Eternity