Sunday, May 31, 2020

✱✱AudioBook Review✱✱ Fated Hearts and The Edge of the World by Garrett Leigh

Fated Hearts
by Garrett Leigh
Narrated by Dan Calley

"He’s not a wolf." 

Devastated by the death of his best friend, Zio is a soldier with one thing on his mind: revenge. Consumed by a conflict that’s raged as long as he’s been alive, he’s had little time or inclination to learn the legends of the shifter world he was raised in. And he certainly doesn’t have time to deal with a shifter of a different kind, even if it’s for the good of the war effort. For the good of his pack. The fact that he’s already crossed paths with the new face in his unit is almost irrelevant. 


Do no harm. Give life not death: it’s the oath Devan was reborn to live by, so when he’s sent abroad to embed with a wolf pack as their resident healer, he doesn’t hesitate. In the supernatural world, some bonds are instant - soldiers become brothers, pack become family. But others run deeper and before long, Devan’s at the mercy of instincts he can’t control. 

Zio’s inner wolf is desperate to be with Devan, while Devan struggles to keep the pack safe. But as the war escalates, and new love is tainted by anguish and pain, the battles within might prove the toughest of them all. 

"I won’t let him die."

Momma Says: 3 stars⭐⭐⭐

Fated Hearts piqued my interest in the beginning, and then it slowed down to the point that it kind of lost me. That and a significant lack of connection. 
When it comes to this type of story, world-building can be a make it or break it thing, and I think this one broke it, at least for me. There is quite a lot of world-building, but unless I missed something, it came up short on cohesiveness. It's all there, but it doesn't come together like I would expect. It felt rather choppy to me. The story does pick up and it gets pretty exciting in the last quarter or so of the book, but I still had questions. Questions about why there was so much animosity as to cause a war, questions about why there was so much issue with Zio and Devan mating. I mean, even from the blurb we know that Devan was sent there to help, so I would think it's safe to assume that the two packs are friendly, so why all the rules and restrictions? I don't know, maybe I got distracted and missed that part or maybe it wasn't there at all, either way, it bothered me. 
Then we come to the characters. Don't get me wrong, Zio and Devan are likable and interesting enough to make me want to more about them. The problem is we don't really get much about them, at least not in a paint a picture for the reader description. That surprised me, especially with the slow burn romance taking place. I would've expected at least some physical description, and I really missed that here. It made it quite difficult to picture these characters in my mind while listening. It was the same with all of the characters, so they all felt kind of like talking heads to me. 
As this is audio, I have to give props to the narrator, Dan Calley. This guy has a voice like butter, and he's quite good with the accents. He also did a great job at making the exciting parts stand out, and I loved the way he did the different accents in conversations. I didn't notice a single slip up, and there was quite a bit of dialogue here.
In the end, there were things I liked and things I didn't, but I'm glad I gave it a listen. I'll certainly remember Dan Calley's name, and while this one wasn't quite my cup of tea, I enjoyed enough to check out other books from Garrett Leigh. 

The Edge of the World
by Garrett Leigh
Narrated by Dan Calley

Shay Maloney is living his dream - on tour with his pirate/folk-rock band. But you can’t know where you’re going until you know where you’re from, and that’s where moody filmmaker and researcher Ollie Pietruska comes in.

The band’s management persuades Shay to let a television company film a documentary about his roots beyond his adoptive Irish family, and Ollie comes into his life knowing more about Shay than Shay’s ever known about himself.

But while Ollie holds the key to Shay’s past, he’s also hiding deep scars. Even as the hardships of the tour bring them closer, Ollie’s demons threaten the blossoming romance. They might both reach the breaking point before Ollie realizes he’s been standing on the edge of the world for too long, and it’s Shay who holds the key to his future.

A friends-to-lovers, rock star, road-tripping romance, with a guaranteed happily ever after.

Momma Says: 4 stars⭐⭐⭐⭐

If you enjoy slow-burn romance, The Edge of the World certainly falls into that category. I personally prefer something a bit faster paced, not instalove, but not quite this slow either. Nevertheless, these characters pulled me in. Shay and Ollie are both adorable characters and I couldn't help but love them. I'll admit that I know next to nothing about Shay's type of music, and it was an important part of the story, but not so much that I felt overwhelmed by it. I really enjoyed the genealogy aspect as Ollie introduces Shay to his family history. So, even though the romance felt a little drawn out, there was still enough going on with these guys to keep my interest and their chemistry is good. Garrett Leigh tells the story in a way that made me want to see these two become a couple. 
The only real drawback for me is that I kind of felt like the secondary characters were just disposable characters, there for nothing more than to propel the story forward. I would've liked a little bit of development, a few details to give me a sense of who these people are. Nevertheless, Ollie and Shay are great characters, and I enjoyed their journey.
This is my second listen with narrator Dan Calley, and he did a terrific job with Shay and Ollie. The way he read these guys is exactly how I'd hear them in my head. He brings the feelings in this one to life for me, and had me hooked from the beginning. 
All in all, The Edge of World is a great mix of sweet and sexy with all the feels and then some, and Calley's performance just adds to the experience. 

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