These three are all easy to read/listen to stories. All very different, but all with happy endings, just what I was looking for as we move into the holidays and I am trying to relax. I listened to all of these books, but at one time, I had been gifted a copy of the ebook of each of these. The ratings and ideas shared are my own.
The Wonder Boy of Whistle Stop, Written and Narrated by Fannie Flagg
4 Star: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
When I saw that there was another book set in Whistle Stop, I wanted to read it, of course, I also love Fannie Flagg’s wonderful story telling, so that was also a pull. This is a story that is set many years later. Bud Threadgoode is now a senior residing in an assisted living village. Bud decides to take one last trip to Birmingham, but once there, decides to venture off to see where his beloved Whistle Stop used to be. This sets off a series of events that tell a wonderful story about what Whistle Stop can be once again. When I first started to read this one, I was a bit disappointed. It seemed to be a series of vignettes from both the past and the present and I couldn’t quite see the connection. Loving other books by this delightful author, I persevered and I am glad I did. We learn more about Idgie, Ruth and Buddy that we didn’t know from Fried Green Tomatoes. We also find out what happened to them in the interim and what is happening in their lives and those of their descendents in the present. It was a heartwarming story about friendship, small towns, caring about others and not giving up on life. I am glad I finished this one. I recommend it to those who enjoy southern fiction, dual timelines and just a nice enjoyable story about human decency and caring. I listened to the audiobook narrated by the author herself, Fannie Flagg. It was like sitting and listening to her tell me the story with expression in the right spot and a warmth that your could hear.
A New Leash on Life by Debbie Burns, Narrated by Stina Nielson
4 Stars: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
I was looking for a light, feel good story and this one certainly fit the bill. Megan Anderson is presently running the local “No Kill Shelter” while her boss is recovering from a health issue. She is overwhelmed and is trying to find homes for her animals as well as secure funding to keep the shelter running. Enter Craig Williams, a wealthy businessman who is dealing with some issues of his own. He is surrendering his daughter’s puppy after his ex-wife and daughter decide that they can not properly train and spend time with him. Megan is rather rude and curt with him, but there is something about him that attracts her. Circumstances bring them together on several occasions and they begin to develop feelings for one another. Before long they are in an intimate relationship, but is it something they are ready for? This is such a sweet story. Who doesn’t enjoy a story about saving loving animals and rescuing those in danger. Throw in caring people working at the shelter, a teenager trying to deal with her parents divorce and trying to fit into a group at school, then a handsome well off divorced man and you know there will be a happily ever after. This story is sweet, not sappy. I came to care about the characters and the shelter and was rooting for all of them to find solutions to their problems. Themes deal with rescue animals, cruelty to animals, divorce, family issues, peer pressure and taking chances on love. A fun, well written story and I am already looking forward to the others in this series. The audiobook is narrated by Stina Nielsen, who is a narrator I enjoy. She uses just the right tone and expression as she reads this story to make it interesting to listen to. A voice actress that I enjoy listening to her performances.
I have been reading the Happily Inc series, but have read them out of order and that does not seem to be a problem for anyone else who wants to jump in. In book #4 we meet Silver Tesdal and Drew Lovato. Years earlier they had a relationship, but with Drew going away to school, it ended, however the feelings never completely went away. Drew is back and is working at his family’s bank, hoping to become CEO when his grandfather retires. Silver runs a traveling bar business that is kept extremely busy with all the weddings in town. She wants to expand her business, but was turned down for a loan. Drew steps in and buys the airstream trailers that she wants to renovate and convinces her that he can be her partner. Now, you know that when a couple have residual feelings for one another spend a lot of time together, that chances are those embers will flare to life. This was a sweet romance with some angst, well more angst than in the other stories I have read in this series. There were some secrets that needed to be shared, but would they cause problems? Of course they will. Overall, this was a romance with several bumps in the road. There was a past that needed to be shared and forgiven, secrets that had to be shared and relationships to develop. A nice addition to this series. The audiobook is narrated by Tanya, who is a narrator I have listened to many times. She uses just the right tone and expression as she reads this story to make it interesting to listen to. A voice actress that is easy to listen to and makes this audiobook enjoyable.