Wraith: Hawaiian Shadows Series Author Edie Claire Narrator: Tavia Gilbert

Wraith: Hawaiian Shadows 
Author: Edie Claire
Narrator: Tavia Gilbert                                     
Produced by, Edie Claire
8 hours 37 minutes
Young Adult Romance

Book cover of Wraith by Edie Claire
Wraith: Hawaiian Shadows By Edie Claire

Photo of Narrator Tavia Gilbert
Narrator Tavia Gilbert

Photo of Edie Clarie
Author Edie Clarie

In reading this delicious supernatural romance, Tavia Gilbert gives an amazing and superb narration of not only the text but the dialog. Her very feminine and gentle voice is so well suited for reading young adult material. Kali is seventeen and Ms. Gilbert does her justice. I was completely carried away with the full bodied way each character was enacted and as each situation was revealed. Even her male characters were superb. Crystal clear and well paced matched with a great story is a double winner. Tavia Gilbert is a truly talented narrator reading anything from this poignant romance or the wonderful animal sounds and older characters of Clea Simons 'Pru Marlowe Pet Mysteries Listen and be swept away and delighted.

Seventeen year old Kali Thompson is in Hawaii with her parents who are house hunting. Plans are laid out for moving from Wyoming to Oahu, Kali is thrilled and had for a long time yearned to live in Hawaii and finally her military dad has been stationed there. While her parents look for a house Kali is hoping to meet other kids her age so when she goes to school in the fall she won't be 'the new kid' but will already have a group of friends to hang out with.

Kali also has the ability to see ghost, when she sees them they are more like shadowy figures moving around and she can sense their feelings. As she gets older she sees some of them more clearly, they never see her and that's fine with Kali. That is until she sees Zane, surfer dude, handsome and personable and unlike other ghosts he can see her. Both are equally surprised as Zane knows he is dead and Kali was always confident that she was invisible to the dead.

Zane wants Kali to help him find out how he died as his memories are blank. Since she seems to be the only one that sees him he's counting on her to help him move on. Kali, doesn't think she can be much help since this is uncharted territory for her. At an early age she learned how to stop talking about wraiths. Kali even avoided reading or researching about ghosts or an afterlife, her knowledge was pretty limited but she agrees to help him if she can. All Kali can suggest is to try and go to the light, only Zane hasn't seen any light. All he knows is surfing and he loves to do that.

Kali's Dad arranges for a co-workers son Matt to show Kali around the island. All Matt talks about is sports and cars, much like many boys do. He does bore Kali with that non stop chatter. Thinking about Zane pretty well keeps her mind occupied, letting her tune out Matt. She likes Matt alright, but her feelings for Zane are growing in intensity very fast. Since Zane is able to appear and disappear at will, they are together much of the time. Allowing their relationship to grow very fast and on a deep level.

With her help Zane begins to remember his past and finally how he died, as he remembers he begins fading and as he fades Kali mourns losing him. She knows he's got to go to the light and find his eternal peace, and she has to let him go. Only Zane is not feeling anything good and not seeing the light, only feeling a tug on him that he has to leave but its just not a happy feeling.

After Zane has gone, Kali is devastated, heartbroken and deeply disturbed that Zane did not seem to be going to a happy place, to the light, or heaven but into a nothingness. Sheer chance or the God's of young love, cause her to cross paths with a very old man that unwittingly gives Kali the exact information she needs and the race is on to to save Zane. With her mother's reluctant help and her girlfriends pulling together Kali races to beat the clock and locates Zane, leading to a shocking ending, will love conquer all, even death?
I did love this story, it was a good clean and unique romantic tale told in a compelling way. The writing is excellent and the characters are well developed. I was rooting all the way for Kali and Zane to find a way to be a couple. Tavia Gilbert's excellent narration does enhance the story to the nth degree.

Wraith: Hawaiian Shadows by Edie Claire


Home for the Haunting 'The Haunted Home Renovation' Series by Juliet Blackwell, Narrator, Xe Sands

Home for the Haunting
Book 4, Haunted Home Renovation Series
Juliet Blackwell
Narrator Xe Sands
7 hours 30 minutes
Tantor Media

Photo of Narrator Xe Sands, reader for all Juliet Blackwell's series.
Narrator Xe Sands
Juliet Blackwell author of the Witchcraft Series, and Haunted Home Renovation Mysteries
Author Juliet Blackwell
Listening to Xe Sands is always such a pleasure. Few come up to her skill level at depicting not only each character but every nuance, which is essential for a story to flow without interruption. Sands gives structure and spirit to the words, that all narrators would do well to emulate. I was especially taken with the astonishing way Sands accurately depicts the voice of the elderly Etta Lee.

The text between the dialog is the glue that holds the story together, as Xe Sands, reads she is giving it excitement, setting the mood or giving it force and direction. Her intonations are flawless and in many languages and foreign accents. Ms.Sands is the highest caliber of narrator, always keeping your attention and directing your inner visualizations in the direction the author has laid out.

Audio Book Review:
Home For the Haunting By Juliet Blackwell

Mel Turner has taken on a volunteer project to do some much-needed repair work for some of the disadvantaged in the San Francisco, Bernal Heights neighborhood. Mel's project house is to repair the peeling paint, and the roof, mend the porch, and additionally building a wheelchair ramp for Monty Parker, who is unable to leave his house without help. The ramp will allow him to get out on his own. Mel's dad has taken on the repairs for Etta Lee a sweet retired school teacher, whose house is across the street from Mel's. Mel and her dad are in a friendly competition on who will finish their project first. Mel's helpers are all inexperienced young volunteers, while her Dad's helpers are all experienced craftsmen.

Good-natured Mel, knows her biggest challenge is making sure none of her volunteers hurt themselves, don't make mistakes and of course don't damage anything. Some younger kids from the neighborhood are disturbing the volunteers with their incessant singing of a ditty to the tune of the old  "Lizzie Borden took an axe," it's really creeping everyone out, Mel, in her engaging way talks to the kids, and one of the boys tells her they sing it every time they pass the murder house. Mel had already noticed faces peering out and she knows they are ghosts.

All is going along cheerily until some of the volunteers start clearing out a shed and find a corpse in it, and it doesn't look like its been there very long. This of course brings everything to a halt, Detective Annette Crawford is back in the picture as investigating officer. Crawford remembers past murders involving Mel, and had no interest or belief in the supernatural. She was downright disdainful of anything to do with haunting's. Now she is warming to the idea and Mel is her go to person for all things haunted.

We learn more about Mel's sister in this book. Unlike most of the people in the series, Mel's sister is not likable at all. She's downright unappealing. She's, rude, self-centered and really pushes Mel's patience to the limits. Let's hope we hear less about her in future books. Most of the characters in the earlier books are in one way or another brought into If Walls Could Talk and with each book we learn more about them.

I love all the series that Juliet Blackwell does, her writing is well thought out, detailed, and most of her people are likable, events are generally believable and the stories move along fast without any tedious boring parts. Xe Sands, is one of the most amazing narrators that we are so lucky to have. I recommend listening to the audiobook version and delving right into the series from the first book, If Walls Could Talk.

Haunted Home Renovation Mystery Series
1. If Walls Could Talk (2010)
2. Dead Bolt (2011)
3. Murder on the House (2012)
4. Home For the Haunting (2013)

Witchcraft Mystery Series
1. Secondhand Spirits (2009)
2. A Cast-Off Coven (2010)
3. Hexes and Hemlines (2011)
4. In a Witch's Wardrobe (2012)
5. Tarnished and Torn (2013)
6. A Vision in Velvet (2014)


Six 1/2 Parts, By, Stephanie Bond Narrator, Ann M. Richardson

Six and a Half Parts
Body Movers Series
Author: Stephanie Bond
Narrator: Ann M. Richardson 
Publisher Stephanie Bond, Inc.
3 h 33 min

Stephanie Bond's Body Movers Series Book 6.5, 6 1/2 Body Parts
Body Movers: 6 1/2 Body Parts

Photo of author Stephanie Bond
Stephanie Bond, Author
Photo of Ann M. Richardson and her dog
Ann M. Richardson, Narrator

A good narrator is able to fulfill the story an author writes and gives each a memorable voice that is unmistakable from author to author, Ann M. Richardson does this beautifully. Each character is distinguishable whether Ms. Richardson is narrating the Planting Dreams Series, a stand alone book like Glimmers or a classic like Greenwillow. In Stephanie Bond's, Six 1/2 Parts, Ms. Richardson is youthful, and upbeat sounding, like the protagonist, a youngish Carlotta Wren. She skillfully negotiates some awkwardly written lines in the book, smoothing them over so well that they are barely detectable. Ms. Richardson once again brings her own unique abilities to animate each character and flush them fully to life and realism.

Book Review for Six 1/2 Parts By Stephanie Bond

Carlotta Wren and her brother Wesley, grew up in a wealthy area of Atlanta, Georgia, giving little thought to where there next meal was coming from. Their parents Randolph and Valerie Wren, lived the good life enjoying their Country Club Set lifestyle. Raised in this ritzy, atmosphere Carlotta had little to concern herself with outside of her personal desires, going to college and ultimately marrying the love of her life Peter Ashford. A rosy future it was indeed. Then it all explodes and Carlotta and Wesley's lives are turned upside down when Randolph Wren is accused of investment fraud at the company he works for. Rather than face up to the charges he and wife Valerie, abandon everything including their children.

When Carlotta Wren wakens from a nightmare she's unable to return to sleep. The pain in her shoulder and the nightmare have made her restless. After taking a pain pill she checks on her brother and see's he's sleeping comfortably. She yearns for a safe place to snuggle up in but there really are none at least none in the townhouse she lives in now. Her thoughts are a jumble of her narrow escape from a serial killer and the unexpected appearance of her father. A father who vanished along with her mother ten years before. All those years of resentment building against her parents left her with unanswered questions. Why did they abandon them, where did they go, and how different life had been before the fraud charges. So many what if's, Carlotta seeks solace in the now not running Miata her father had given her when she was still in High School, she cherished that car and the good memories it brings her.

As she slides behind the steering wheel, and drifts into her memories she dozes off, later she suddenly awakens to find it's morning. Things look familiar but they are not the same, when she gets out of the car and realizes she's at her childhood home, Carlotta is speechless and shocked to find her mother looking as elegant as ever, her father is up and going on his way to work and her brother is asleep in his old bedroom.

Although confused she tries to remain coherent and calm while analyzing just what is going on. What she realizes is she has been in some mysterious way transported into another timeline, where her father was not accused of fraud, she did go on to college and married Peter and her mother was still the functioning alcoholic. Carlotta will at last find out first hand just what would have happened to her and her family if things had gone as they were suppose to. Nothing turned out exactly as she had spent the past ten years envisioning it. Bittersweet it is to actually have those what if's turn into realities.