Lia RIley is back with a new (ok – new at the first of the year) new adult contemporary romance series! Wanderlust takes readers along a journey with her characters: to remote places and allows them to face fears and issues along the way to their happy ending. Starting in Patagonia, I’m reviewing the audiobook version narrated by Helen Wick and Paul Fox, Please read on to find out about
With Every Breath
I adore Lia Riley’s writing, she draws you in with her dual POV narrations, giving us characters that need to grow up AND face their demons, and the ride is always enjoyable. Her new Wanderlust series brings us With Every Breath: the story of Auden and Rhys and the challenges that they face, physical and mental.
Auden is a recent graduate, newly possessing a coveted internship for an adrenaline-junkie focused magazine, an albuterol inhaler and a twin sister so poisonous and jealousy fueled she makes Satan look like a pre-teen bully. A bit of a retiring and agreeable sort, Auden never actually learned to stand up for herself, even calling herself a passive evil genius. Deciding to go to Chile, alone, to set up camp at the base camp by The Needle in order to get some profiles of those there to climb, she heads off over Christmas break.
Rhys is a renowned mountain climber, infamous for the worst day of his life: while on a climb with his brother in the Himalayas, he returned alone. Running from the self-hatred, conflicted feelings and never ending interview requests, he’s escaped to Chile to make the climb.
An aggravating Dutchman with a facility for false names, ignoring personal space and a tendency to hum ‘Eye of the Tiger’ and other such anthems when not smoking comes to a head with Auden setting off on her own for shelter. And one impulsive turn, a massive thunderstorm and a missing tent pole puts her at Rhys’ mercy, and fortunately for her, his skill and awareness of the dangers.
These two are adorable together, their humor works well, as Rhys is cautious but curious about this stranger who appeared and turned his tummy to tingles. From gentle exploration to Auden’s realization of just where she heard Rhys’ name sets up a series of conflicts for her: getting THE interview that will guarantee her position at the magazine, or risking further damaging the man she has realized is kind, protective and running from something.
Narration in this story is provided by Helen Wick and Paul Fox. These two are wonderful: Wick’s voice is perfectly suited to Auden, carrying the emotions that fit the words, using the subtleties in the text to fuel her performance. Paul Fox has a wonderful brogue, clearly becoming Rhys, full of brash gruffness to keep people away. But his interior moments, those where he confronts his own demons are close to heartbreaking. These two flow smoothly, bringing changes in tones as the story proceeds in concurrent moments as each tells their version.
Full of heart and heartbreak, these two find a connection above and beyond the circumstances and the mountain that brought them together. While not yet a full-on happy ever after, both Auden and Rhys faced several demons together and alone, and found a way to come back to one another in a way that feels appropriate, yet leaves me wanting more. Perhaps these two have another chapter (or more) to their story, but is a great start to a new series.
Stars: Overall 4 Narration 5 Story 4
Title: With Every Breath
Author: Lia Riley
Series: Wanderlust #1
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Narrator: Helen Wick, Paul Fox
Published by: Forever
Published on: 29 December 2015
Source: Hachette Audio
Audio Length: 8 Hours: 19 minutes
Heat: Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ AllRomance ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦ Book Depository ♦ Google
BREATHE DEEP . . . AND JUMP IN
At the ends of the earth, Patagonia is a land where ambition trumps reason and the savage summit of La Aguja lures the most determined climbers. It's also the last spot a "play-it-safe girl" like Auden Woods expects to find herself. But she'll lace up her brand-new hiking boots and do whatever it takes to secure a dream job at an adventure magazine . . . even if it kills her. And it just might. When disaster strikes, her only chance at survival comes in the form of the surliest, sexiest mountaineer ever to come out of Scotland.
After a climbing accident cost him his brother, professional mountaineer Rhys MacAskill is at the end of his rope. Redemption is not in his future. That is, until a terrifying storm blows a budding journalist into his tent and it's up to him to make sure they both survive until morning. Despite the demons weighing on him, Rhys can't resist the temptation of the charming American and one wild night just isn't enough.
Auden and Rhys soon learn there are no shortcuts as they navigate their way between life, death, and atonement, and discover something they never expected—love.
A copy of this title was provided via Hachette Audio for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.