I know, I know – I read and loved this title when it first came out – so going for the audiobook version of the third of The Wedding Belles series from Lauren Layne in audio form was a no brainer. Please read on for my impressions of the story as narrated by Vanessa Daniels
To Love and To Cherish
With the ARC review, I was pretending to adult. It wasn’t easy. But you can see that review and read for yourself. But here I have the opportunity to see if the book holds up to a favorite, and just how the narration will impact the read. And, for those of you who have not taken a moment to listen to an audiobook – do your homework, read some reviews of narrators who have performed your favorite author’s books and take a chance. A good narrator can project emotions, add tension or deliver a smile, all which add to your experience.
In To Love and To Cherish, we get Alexis’ story: always pulled together, never needs a man Alexis who is the brains (and a bit of the enforcer) behind the Wedding Belles. She inspires fierce loyalty from her girls on staff – they love her to death – but seems to have a roadblock where her own happy ever after is concerned. Or perhaps it is more of a blind spot: Logan her BFF and the sexiest number cruncher around has it bad for her – and she doesn’t have a clue.
And Logan is hard to miss – British accent, piercing eyes, looks great in a suit, always polite and even better – he’s a true knight in armor. He helped a new-to-the-city unknown Alexis build her business: offering financial and business advice and now some six years later she’s at the top of the game, the premier wedding consultants in the whole of the city. But, as much as he has held a torch for Alexis, a guy can only wait around invisibly for so long…..
From twists, turns, surprises and the utter perfection of this couple – this is a story (and a series) that any fan of romance with a touch of laughter and some characters that you want to befriend – this is the Series to read. And that’s the problem with the audiobook. The narration here is provided by Vanessa Daniels, and this is the third title I’ve reviewed where she narrates. I probably should have been smarter and started with this first as it’s the earliest example of her work I’ve encountered, if release dates mean anything. And, unfortunately, the same issues I’ve encountered with each of her books are clear and present here: improbable and poorly placed hesitations in phrasing, a decided lack of inflections that subtly indicate emotional nuance, and repeated mispronunciations. Again, I am left feeling as if this was a “get it done” performance: while the characters were mostly distinctive in tone and pacing, the lack of care taken when delivering the words, or even attention paid to moments that could have used (or demanded) a pause, a smile, or even a sharper voice to present emotion were missed. While the story itself stands the test of time, the narration was lacking and sadly left me unfulfilled and missing that spark that came with the read.
Stars: Overall 4 Narration 1 Story 5
Title: To Love and To Cherish
Author: Lauren Layne
Series: The Wedding Belles #3
Also in this series: From This Day Forward, To Have and to Hold, For Better or Worse, To Love and to Cherish
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Narrator: Vanessa Daniels
Published by: Pocket Star, Tantor Audio
Published on: 28 February, 2017
Source: Tantor Audio
Audio Length: 7 Hours: 27 minutes
Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ Kobo ♦ IndieBound ♦ Book Depository ♦ Google ♦Audible ♦Tantor Audio
Sex and the City meets The Wedding Planner in The Wedding Belles, a contemporary and witty romance series about three high-powered New York City women who can plan any wedding—but their own.
Alexis Morgan has spent the past eight years devoted to turning her tiny start-up into Manhattan’s premiere wedding planning company, The Wedding Belles. Now that her business is thriving, it’s time to turn towards her much neglected personal life, and Alexis approaches her relationships like she does everything else: with a plan. Not a part of that plan is Logan Harris, the silent partner in the Belles, and the one person who’s been there for her since the very beginning. But Alexis needs someone fun, and Logan’s all business, all the time—except when a late night at the office ends with an unexpected kiss that leaves the usually cool and together Alexis reeling.
Logan has lusted after Alexis since the day he walked into the tiny Harlem apartment that used to double as her office. But the ambitious wedding planner has always been untouchable...until now. Alexis has made it clear that she’s on the dating market—and equally clear that he’s not in the running. But when Alexis finds herself in need of a date for her sister’s last minute wedding in Florida, Logan knows it’s the perfect time to show Alexis that there’s more to him than numbers and spreadsheets—and beneath the pinstripes and glasses lies a hot-blooded heartthrob. As Florida’s sultry days turn into even hotter nights, Logan’s out to convince Alexis that the fling of a lifetime could just maybe turn into forever...
See The Wedding Belles on GoodReads
A copy of this title was provided via Tantor Audio for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.