I read the Lake News books a few years ago, and genuinely enjoyed the stories– another of the many “small town” series that are so popular now. Lily Blake left Lake Henry, NH, soon after high school to escape a scandalous brush with the law and a mother who saw her as flawed and unworthy She has made a small but comfortable life for herself in Boston as a lounge singer by night and a school teacher by day. When her friendship with a priest is blown out of proportion by an unscrupulous journalist, she returns to Lake Henry to rebuild her life. The story’s hero is John Kipling, who is both the older brother of the boy who caused the high school legal trouble and a journalist – so he’s double trouble in Lily’s eyes.
Delinsky is one of those authors who truly builds the story and reveals the characters word by word. While the story of the scandal seemed a little far-fetched, I found myself drawn in, both by Delinsky’s storytelling and by Jen Taylor’s exceptionally good narration. Lily suffers from stuttering – one of the things that exacerbated her relationship with her mother – and Taylor manages to sound as if she herself stutters. Her characters are well done and discernible, even when she doesn’t use a very low register for male voices. Her children’s voices are also wonderful – in fact, I felt like she was channeling Anna Fields/Kate Fleming’s voicing of the children in SEP’s Chicago Stars. Her voice acting of the narrative was exactly right on. Yes!
I did a little research at Google Public Library on Ms. Taylor, and learned that she has a vast background and a fan following in voice acting for video games. Her book narrations include two of Kelley Armstrong’s Otherworld series and several YA books. Her British accent in 2 Audible.com samples sounded authentic to my American ears. Color me impressed! I hope to hear more of her in new romance audiobooks.
The story also works in enough of the introduction to the sequel, An Accidental Woman, for me to be interested. Unfortunately, the only audio version is abridged and Taylor is not the narrator. Still, it’s next on my list.
Book Content: A
Steam Factor: Glad I have my ear buds in – I know there was some description of getting naked and getting it on, but I don’t recall it getting very detailed. After the first time, all love scenes faded to black.
Violence: none, although I did want to slap a couple of people, and Lily did own a gun
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Simon & Schuster