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August 5, 2021

2 Audiobooks to Kick Off August

by Donna Huber


Has your commute become longer between the return to the offices and the start of the school year? Look on the bright side - it's more time to enjoy your audiobook. And today I have to books you won't want to put down.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. Free audiobooks were provided for an honest review.

Dark Roads by Chevy Stevens

Dark Roads
August 2021; Macmillan Audio; 978-1250133571
audio (11h7m), ebook, print (384 pages); thriller

I think this is the first book by Chevy Stevens that I have listened to (I've read all but one of her books). I'm not sure if it was because I listened to it but I didn't feel like as intense of a read as her other books. I've often said of her previous books that the plots could have been ripped from newspaper headlines. Ironically, Dark Roads is loosely based on real events. While Cold Creek Highway is fictional, there is a highway in Canada that a number of women have been murdered.

It was still a book I didn't want to put down. And there is quite the curveball. I didn't see it coming at all (did I not listen carefully enough?) and my jaw literally dropped when it landed.

I liked characters. The story is told from the points of view of Hailey McBride and Beth Chevalier. I think I liked Beth a bit more than Hailey, but they are both strong characters. Johnny is a great secondary character. He's a wonderful friend to both girls and tries so hard to do the right thing.

The audiobook has multiple narrators. Even so, I did occasionally have trouble telling the difference between the girls when the story switched POVs. I actually didn't realize there were different narrators until Hailey and Beth are speaking to one another. It was a Beth chapter and Hailey sounded different than she did in her own chapters. It is a small thing and didn't really take away from my enjoyment of the story.

If you are looking for a good psychological thriller, then you can't go wrong with this book.

Buy Dark Roads at Amazon

Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy

Once There Were Wolves
August 2021; Macmillan Audio; 978-1250244147
audio (8h27m), ebook, print (272 pages)

I'm not sure what I was expecting when I started this audiobook, but the story that unfolded wasn't it. That's not to say this isn't a great book. The book description is messed up at Goodreads and I had forgotten what the Netgalley summary was. So I went into thinking this was going to be about the reintroduction of wolves into Scotland - a sort of creative nonfiction type story.

Yes, there are wolves being introduced into Scotland, but that really is just the catalyst of the story. The plot is much more about the bond between twin sisters Inti and Aggie. Because I wasn't expecting that kind of story the twist and turns took me completely by surprise and I was never quite sure what was going to happen next.

I'm not sure how I feel about the ending. The sisters make a lot of mistakes and, yes, they have suffered their own traumas but I'm not sure the ending felt realistic. 

I wanted to like Initi. She is mistrustful of people, particularly men. So I don't if it is because she is so closed off or if it is just her personality (she's has a bit of a habit of always thinking she is right and doesn't listen to anyone that has a contrary opinion), but I didn't find her to be very likable. Aggie is sort of a shadow character as she deals with the trauma that has driven the sisters to Scotland in the first place. The relationship between the sisters seemed a little too co-dependent.

I did like the townspeople. They were interesting and I think did care - Initi was just too dismissive of them.

The story held my attention - at first it was because I was trying to figure out what was going on. But once I settled into the rhythm of the story I mostly just wanted to know if the wolves were successfully reintroduced. 

I would have liked for the story to have been more focused on the reintroduction efforts as that was what I was expecting. Once There Were Wolves was listed as general fiction so I definitely wasn't expecting a domestic thriller. Yet, it turned out to be a very good thriller.

Saskia Maarleveled is a wonderful narrator. She really brought the characters and story to life.

Buy Once There Were Wolves at Amazon

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour.

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