Nina Hill has the life she wants and is perfectly content with it. She has the job she wants. working at a local bookstore; friends she likes; and a home that is close to work and play. She’s not in a relationship right now but that’s okay, too. When the father she never knew existed suddenly dies, leaving her not only with an inheritance but a host of siblings, nieces and nephews, it creates a level of anxiety Nina has worked hard to manage and avoid. As if that wasn’t enough, Tom Byrne, one of her fiercest Trivia Night competitors, starts to show interest…and she’s feeling something back!
As soon as I saw the author, cover and description of this book, I added it to my shelf, knowing there was a high likelihood I’d love it. My instincts were dead on as every element of this story resonated, and loudly. Yes, Nina is bookish and lives that kind of life. However, she doesn’t fit the traditional stereotype as she’s attractively put together and social, even though it’s on her own terms. She’s quirky and interestingly so, living alone with a cat named Phil. The introduction of her new family brought a level of hilarity you might expect but unexpected dynamics that made this an even more interesting reading experience. Nina’s developing romance with Tom was tenderly and subtly managed without overwhelming the other aspects and didn’t follow predictable paths. I liked Tom and both had to make adjustments to fit the other into their lives if only in their own minds.
I loved this story for all the reasons above and for putting a strobe light on anxiety, suffered by more people than you’d think…how it manifests itself and is best managed. The characters, all of them, are expertly defined, evoking vivid images in my head. I listened to the story and Emily Rankin’s performance was utterly brilliant. She took a great story and delivered it up on a platinum platter. Her pacing was perfect and she completely got Nina and everyone else. This will rank as one of my top favorites for the year, both the story and the narrator performance.
- Release Date: July 9, 2019
- Narrator: Emily Rankin
- Audio Length: 9 hours, 4 minutes
- Publisher: Penguin Audio
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(Thanks to Penguin Random House Audio for my complimentary copy. All opinions are my own.)