Audiobook, Contemporary Fiction

Adelaide by Genevieve Wheeler @geeewheeler #CaitlinWheeler @MacmillanAudio @librofm

the setup…
Adelaide Williams is a young American expatriate living in London. She’s a talented communications expert who’s enjoying life with her great friends and working for people who appreciate her contributions. Adelaide wasn’t interested in a committed relationship, in fact, filling her time with meaningless single encounters that suited her just fine. That was until she met Rory Hughes through a dating app. He seems charming and well suited for her and Adelaide falls hard, thinking she’s found her soulmate. When his response to her becomes inconsistent, often downright insensitive, Adelaide just tries harder to make him love her.

the heart of the story…
Trust me on one thing…this is not a romance or a love story. Adelaide is sweet, kind and a bit obsessive. That comes across early on and despite the fierce loyalty of those close to her, there’s something about her that always feels a bit desperate. I liked how the story situationally transitions between her past and present, providing insight about and context for her reasoning and logic. But still, Adelaide only had one speed, overdrive, in all things, especially drinking, partying and her determination to make Rory love her. Speaking of Rory, if Adelaide had been healthy, she would have recognized that he didn’t deserve her. Despite her issues, it was impossible not to adore Adelaide and appreciate her essence. It took a Rory for her to finally hit the proverbial wall and fall apart, getting the much needed help I believe she needed for most of her life.

the narration…
This was my first listening experience with the narrator and she completely convinced me she was Adelaide. She conveyed the emotions needed in all the right moments but never lost the character’s sweetness. She nailed her.

the bottom line…
I really wish this wasn’t positioned as a love story because it sets up false expectations. That’s unfortunate because it is a strongly relevant contemporary fiction with an important message about dysfunctional mental and emotional health that can be masked by overachievement and charm. In Adelaide we see the self destruction while still appearing highly functional. I rooted for her throughout and died a little every time she allowed Rory to minimize her. She had wonderful friends who were a reflection of what she deserved. I highly recommend her story, one I enjoyed immensely, but don’t walk into it looking for hearts and flowers. And, if you can get the audio version, go that route as the narrator elevated the experience.

Book Info

  • Release Date: April 18, 2023
  • Narrator: Caitlin Kelly
  • Audio Length: 10 hours, 14 minutes
  • Publisher: Macmillan Audio


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(Thanks to the publisher and for my complimentary copy. All opinions are my own.)

11 thoughts on “Adelaide by Genevieve Wheeler @geeewheeler #CaitlinWheeler @MacmillanAudio @librofm”

  1. Excellent review, Jo. I had not heard of this book and it really sounds emotional, but very realistic. Having several family members with mental health issues, I think I would enjoy this book a lot. Too bad it is not being marketed the best.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Carla💜 I really wish they’d rewrite the book’s description. It’s a great story but the vast majority of readers will be romance lovers who will be disappointed. You’d appreciate this one even without the personal connection.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. This does sound like a very complex story. It’s a shame that it is categorized wrongly as a romance. I think I’d enjoy it as a character study. She sounds very…well, very. Excellent review!

    Liked by 1 person

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