I love Julia London’s contemporary voice – even more than her better known historical writing. And I adore Renee Raudman’s narrative skill. She easily ranks as one of my favorites. So, I was thrilled to see the two paired together for All I Need Is You.
I first read All I Need Is You under a different title, Wedding Survivor, the first in the Thrillseekers Anonymous series, upon its release back in 2005. The title has been changed as well as the series name, which is now the Over the Edge series. And Renee Raudman’s performance has moved my grade from a B+ in print to a solid A in audio format.
Thrillseekers Anonymous is an extreme sports club run by four uber-sexy males from various tough-hero walks of life. They cater to the rich and famous taking those willing to pay the price on sporting adventures they won’t find anywhere else. When three of the partners agree to stage a celebrity wedding in a remote mountainous area, the fourth partner, Eli McCain, objects and wants nothing to do with it. What do four guys know about planning a wedding? And then the job of finding a wedding planner falls on Eli – the guy who truly hates the whole wedding scenario.
After losing her job, Marnie Banks decided she wanted to be a wedding planner. So what if her first solo wedding is between two mega stars in the middle of nowhere? It is sure to make her a wedding planner to the stars. But it’s all so hush-hush and why is Eli always on her case about the budget? It certainly isn’t easy working with that guy but she knows she can handle it all with class.
All I Need Is You is a light and fun contemporary romance with many laugh-out-loud moments. The mega-stars are over the top and their interactions almost touch on slapstick at times but Renee Raudman keeps a leash on it all making the almost-ridiculous into just plain funny.
There’s something about Renee’s general narrative that sets the mood so completely. And the ease of character identification that comes with one of her narrations – what a dream for a listener such as me who avoids the more subtle narrations. With each of her performances, I follow along effortlessly without the need to rely on dialogue tags.
And then there’s Renee’s portrayal of her heroes. Ohhh, yeah. As I have come to expect of her romance narrations, the hero not only sounds all male but every line reflects the fact that he is just being a guy. You know – not thinking much about all those emotions – seeing the big picture – exasperation – forbearance – the quiet when wondering what in the heck he should be saying in a particular situation. And you hear Eli experience or endure each of these scenarios, especially when interacting with Marnie – I smiled a lot and often found it to be down right hilarious.
I haven’t even mentioned the magic Renee works with the female characters. Her portrayals are diverse and impressive from the beautifully voiced to cranky to elderly to playing the diva.
All I Need Is You is a perfect listen for making your day shine a little brighter. Don’t think too much about anything other than the romance and enjoy the ride.
Book Content: A-
Steam Factor: Glad I had my ear buds in
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Brilliance Audio
All I Need Is You was provided to AudioGals for review by Brilliance Audio.