Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Audiobook review: What We Find


What We Find (Sullivan's Crossing, #1)
Author: Robyn Carr

Series: Sullivan's Crossing, #1
Released: April 5th 2016
Publisher: Recorded Books
Length:10 hrs and 6 mins
Source: Bought
Buy: Audible

Between the urban bustle of Denver and the high-stress environment of a career in neurosurgery, Maggie Sullivan has hit a wall. When an emergency high-risk procedure results in the death of a teenager, Maggie finds herself in the middle of a lawsuit - and experiencing levels of anxiety she's never faced before. She knows she needs to slow down before she burns out completely, and the best place she can think to do that is Sullivan's Crossing.
Named for Maggie's great-grandfather, the land and charming general store at the crossroads of the Colorado and the Continental Divide Trails have been passed down through the generations and now belong to Maggie's eccentric father, Sully. When she shows up unannounced, he welcomes her with open arms, and she relishes the opportunity to indulge in his simple way of life. But shortly after she arrives, Maggie's world is rocked once again, and she must take on more responsibility than she'd planned.
Though she's relieved a quiet and serious-looking hiker, Cal Jones, is willing to lend a hand, Maggie is suspicious of this mysterious man's eagerness to help - until she finds out the true reason for his deliberate isolation. Though Cal and Maggie both struggle with loss and loneliness, the time they spend together gives Maggie hope for something brighter just on the horizon...if only they can learn to find peace and healing - and perhaps love - with each other.

Robyn Carr is famous for her two series, Virgin River and Thunder Point. With Thunder Point nearing its end, I was so very excited to see that she’s starting a new series, with yet another small town community at its center. It was clear from the start that Sullivan’s Crossing has a whole lot of potential, with so many interesting characters already prepared to take the spotlight.

What We Find, however, wasn’t quite up to Robyn Carr’s standards. Centered around Maggie and Cal, What We Find shows both of them during their most vulnerable time. They both have reasons to be a little bit lost and disillusioned. As a neurosurgeon, Maggie is being sued for malpractice, her practice is closed and her boyfriend of two years abandoned her after a miscarriage. She goes to regroup to the only place she feels completely safe – her father’s camping ground and store at Sullivan’s Crossing. There she meets Cal, a wandering hiker with secrets. She is distrustful at first even though Cal tries very hard to help her and her father. She is curious about his story and more than willing to pry, but Cal keeps his reasons for wandering very close to his chest.

Although Carr’s characters are very much alive, What We Find suffers from a serious lack of plot. Nothing actually happens in it. We follow these people as they slowly uncover each other’s secrets and admit their feelings for each other. I usually prefer romances with very little tension and angst, but there has to be something to keep me engaged. Aside from the secondary characters like Maggie’s father Sully or neighbor Tom, there was very little to keep me turning those pages.

I think I was mostly bothered by the lack of chemistry between Maggie and Cal. It didn’t seem like one of those romances that are meant to be, but rather a marriage of convenience for two wounded souls. Books with no tension and very little plot have to make up for it somehow, and a strong magnetic pull between characters is usually a way to do it. Unfortunately, What We Find was mostly unsuccessful in that, and almost every other department.

The book was saved, as so many books are, by Therese Plummer’s fantastic narration. Yes, she’s one of those narrators who could read grocery lists and make them interesting. She brings characters to life and ads something uniquely hers to every story she reads. I will read the next book in this series because I trust Carr to make it a whole lot better than this unfortunate beginning, and as always, I’ll choose Plummer to read it to me.




12 comments:

  1. Sorry this wasn't up to snuff, Maja. It looks like you had too many issues with this one. I've always wanted to read her books, so I might check out those two series you mentioned.

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  2. Aww man, sorry this fell so flat for you. The chemistry definitely has to be there in a good romance though to make it work.

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  3. Aw, it's too bad there wasn't much of a plot and that the chemistry between Maggie and Cal could have been better.

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  4. That was for sure an unfortunate beginning

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  5. I might give this series as audiobooks if the second book is better than this weak beginning!
    Great review Maja!

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  6. "I usually prefer romances with very little tension and angst, but there has to be something to keep me engaged."

    YES! I actually just read one that suffered from that exact thing Maja! I don't want over the top drama and miscommunications at every turn leading to a push-pull page-turning extravaganza, but I do need something to keep me reading. Sorry this wasn't quite up to Carr standards for you!

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  7. Sorry to hear you didn't like this one, Maja. I've done a lot of backpacking so part of the reason I did enjoy it was the setting and feeling of all people from different walks of life converging on this one spot and sharing experiences. The romance wasn't as good as some of her other books, but I still liked it. Still, sometimes characters just don't click for a reader and I totally get that. Hope the next in the series is wonderful, and until then I'm back to her Virgin River series. Great honest review! :)

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  8. Ah that's a shame you don't enjoy it as much as her other series. I have to say that Robyn Carr is a popular author in my work. Great review, Maja!

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  9. Aww, I'm sorry this one didn't work out, Maja! The Carr I tried wasn't quite to my liking so I wonder if her books are a hit-or-miss depending on the title. But I'm glad that the audiobook really saves it and I hope the next Carr novel you pick up is better!

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  10. WIthout a serious plot, I am surprised you pushed through this one.

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  11. It is hard to push through a romance that doesn't have a good plot to go along with it. It is a shame, because I like the sounds of these characters. I swear I've listened to Therese Plummer before, but I can't remember what books it was. I agree that a a great narrator can help you get through those "meh" books. Great review.

    Melanie @ Hot Listens & Rabid Reads

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  12. Hi, Maja. I haven’t been around blogosphere for a while, it’s good to be able to read you wonderful reviews again. I’ve heard a lot about Robyn Carr’s Virgin River series from Rachel@Readers Den. She highly recommended Therese Plummer to me. So glad to see loved her narration as well. I definitely need to put this series on top of my “to be listen” pile. I probably start with Virgin River and then decide about What We Find. I don’t mind the lack of plot, but you are absolutely right there have to be something like great chemistry to keep reader interested. Great review, as always!

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