Published by Gallery Books on June 11th, 2013
Source: Audiobook obtained through Audiobook Jukebox
I love audio books. In the author’s notes on the audio version of Joe Hill’s NOS4A2, he talks about how the first stories we learn are read to us. I listen to audio books when I’m in the car, shopping, and playing Candy Crush.
In typical book blogger fashion, I already have a tbr shelf just for audio books. Reviewing them is a bit more difficult, because I don’t take notes and I don’t always know how to spell the characters names. So these reviews will be a little different from my book reviews.
by Johanna Lindsey
Some young ladies marry for money and social standing, a few lucky ones marry for love, but Tiffany Warren is marrying to end a feud. Honoring her mother’s promise, Tiffany reluctantly travels west to meet her estranged father and his enemy’s eldest son, rancher Hunter Callahan. Once the Warrens and the Callahans are united by marriage, both clans will stop squabbling over a disputed strip of land.
In the chaos of a train robbery, Tiffany seizes a golden opportunity: By assuming the identity of her father’s new housekeeper, she can live with the father she never knew and assess his true character, as well as that of the neighboring cowboy to whom she is betrothed. But, too late, Tiffany discovers that the rivalry between the Warrens and the Callahans has escalated when the Callahans steal the Warrens’ housekeeper as soon as she steps off the train!
Now, Tiffany, who is pretending to be Jennifer Fleming, finds herself living in the enemy camp, under the same roof as her fiancé. All too soon she learns her intended is a handsome, sweet talking charmer whom she has to fight off because he can’t keep his eyes—or his hands—off Jennifer.
After Tiffany’s charade is exposed, she refuses to marry Hunter to end the feud.
As Hunter goes about claiming his rightful bride-to-be, he knows that although he loves two women—proper, elegant Tiffany as well as spunky, passionate Jennifer—he has only one heart to win.
Are you surprised to see a romance novel review on my blog? Me too! But I used to read a lot of historical romance in high school, and Johanna Lindsey was my choice of romance crack. I started with her book Once a Princess and then read every book she’d ever written. And I was mostly faithful to her. I still read most of the books she writes, but it’s more out of loyalty than anything else. However when given the opportunity to review her latest audiobook, I was all over that!
The plot stretches the limits of imagination a bit, but I’m okay with that because I love the whole “pretending to be someone else” storyline in my historical romances. Tiffany needed a little roughing of the edges. I found her attitude towards her father to be a bit appalling, but she’s a very young, very sheltered heroine, so I went with it.
Hunter’s family was immediately loveable, and I can see Lindsey revisiting the Warrens and the Callahans much like she does with the Malory clan (some of my all time favorite books written by Lindsey are about the Malorys!) in future novels. It did take a long time for the sex to happen, but that’s typical with historical romances. There is good chemistry between Hunter and Tiffany, and I liked that his character was so good natured. I also loved the scenes in the book where Tiffany was trying to pull things off as Jennifer, and the little piglet that follows her around like a puppy was pretty adorable. Other than Tiffany’s ridiculous assumptions about her dad and the whole unbelievable reason why Tiff’s mom really left her dad, I was able to suspend belief pretty well.
I may not read a lot of historical romances anymore but I’ll still continue with Johanna Lindsey. I stopped reading romance for a stupid reason- it embarrassed me. I no longer worry so much what people think of my reading habits and thanks to audible and ebooks, I no longer have to worry that little children or nuns will see the bodice ripping covers of the books I choose to read. 😉 One Heart to Win felt more like classic Lindsey and I can honestly say that I enjoyed it.
The book was narrated by Meredith Mitchell. This was my first listen by her, and I was more than a little nervous because I’ve listened to some cringe-worthy readings of romances in the past. Usually when I pick out audios I like to get thrillers or comedies. Sometimes narrators can’t do good voices for the opposite sex and then it just sounds creepy. Fortunately, Mitchell does a great job! She doesn’t over do it, which I much prefer to putting on a fake gruff voice or a nasal sounding one (which one narrator who shall remain nameless does on a certain popular book series, which is probably was led me to avoid romantic audiobooks in the first place). I would definitely listen to Mitchell’s narration in the future, although she didn’t blow me away like other narrators have done.