Love Him Desperate (On the Market #5) by E.M. Lindsey (audiobook) – Narrated by Nick Hudson

love him desperate

This title may be downloaded from Audible via Amazon.

“Don’t be ridiculous. There was nothing to steal. I was always yours.” 

Every important thing in Dmitri Williams’ life has come and gone along the narrow roads and tall mountain peaks of Cherry Creek.

Dmitri wants love, but he’s not quite sure he’ll ever find it. His sexuality is confusing on a good day, and the one person he wants is the one friend who can never know how he feels. Raphael Meyer is older, charming, and better looking than Dmitri will ever deserve – and somehow, he thinks Dmitri is worth his time.

Dmitri knows he will never be worthy, so he puts all of his efforts into making sure Raphael finds someone who will adore him as much as he deserves. Even if it destroys his heart in the process. And no matter what his friends keep saying, Dmitri isn’t sure he’ll ever believe that Raphael returns his feelings.

It’s the makings of star-crossed lovers, because Dmitri has never believed in happily-ever-afters. But, in the end, Raphael might just have enough desperate hope for the both of them.

Rating:  Narration – A-; Content – B

Love Him Desperate, book five in E.M Lindsey’s On the Market series, is a slow-burn, friends-to-lovers romance between two complex, damaged individuals who have a lot of soul-searching to do before they can finally be together. It’s beautifully written and richly characterised, with two likeable leads and a strong secondary cast, and Nick Hudson’s excellent performance certainly makes the case for experiencing the story in audio.

Raphael Meyer lives with cerebral palsy and epilepsy, and while life hasn’t been easy, he’s comfortable in his body and has always lived life as himself, as a proud disabled person. He was born and raised in Germany and lived there until his thirties, when his American lover asked him to accompany him when he returned to the US. Even though Raphael sensed that their relationship wasn’t really built to last, he was restless and ready for change, so he agreed, settling in Cherry Creek after that relationship ended. Now approaching (or in? I don’t recall if his exact age is given) his forties, Raphael is mostly settled and mostly content – although he continues to search for the love and connection he longs for and hasn’t yet managed to find. He knows that being with him can be difficult, and has come to think that romantic love – lasting romantic love – isn’t for him, as everyone he’s loved – and who has loved him – has left him eventually.

You can read the rest of this review at AudioGals.

Love Him Free (On the Market #1) by E.M. Lindsey (audiobook) – narrated by Nick Hudson

This title may be downloaded from Audible via Amazon

Socially awkward, 36-year-old virgin, Simon Kadish, knows he wants more from life than a failing bakery and an empty apartment. He just doesn’t know how to get it.

From an early age, Simon’s life has been marked by loss. After the death of his father, Simon and his infant brother are ripped from their home in Tel Aviv and forced to settle in a small mountain town in the US where no one speaks his language. By the age of 12, Simon is an orphan. By the age of 21, Simon finds himself the unwilling owner of his bubbe’s bakery, and the hesitant guardian of his little brother. Terrified of losing what little he has left, Simon dedicates himself to his faith, sacrificing everything to keep the fragile scraps of his broken family.

But, when Simon’s favorite film star’s life suddenly falls apart on social media, Simon makes a choice. He goes against every one of his instincts and fires up his camera, sending a message in rusty ASL. He doesn’t expect anything from it, of course. After all, Simon’s life has been anything but charmed.

Deaf film star Rocco Moretti had anyone’s fantasy life, and he wouldn’t change it for the world.

But when Rocco wakes up to his boyfriend leaving, he has nowhere to turn. Rocco realizes in that moment, he wants something more. He’s not sure where to find it, but he thinks maybe the shy video in shaky ASL in his DMs is a good place to start. After all, Cherry Creek is in the middle of nowhere, and since seeing that video, Rocco hasn’t been able to stop thinking about that shy baker’s long fingers, shy smile, and the constellation of freckles on his pale cheeks.

Rocco isn’t sure leaving his life behind is the right choice, and Simon isn’t sure he belongs in Rocco’s world. But the one thing they do know is that this love has a chance to set them both free.

Rating: Narration – A-; Content – B-

Both the author AND narrator of Love Him Free are new-to-me, although both have been on my radar for a while. Nick Hudson is also the narrator of Jordan Castillo Price’s ABCs of Spellcraft series (I’m a massive fan of her PsyCop books, so Spellcraft is on my TBL) and Kaetrin recently mentioned that she’d enjoyed Mr. Hudson’s performance in them, so I was pleased to have a chance to listen to him in Love Him Free.

It’s the first book in the On the Market series, and although I believe it has connections to another series, it mostly works as a standalone.

Simon Kaddish was only a child when, following his father’s death in a bomb attack, his mother and grandmother whisked him and his baby brother Levi from their home in Tel Aviv and moved them to a small, mountain town in the States. After his mother’s death in a car crash, and with his grandmother working all hours in her small bakery, the care of Levi fell mostly to Simon; and when at twenty-one, tragedy struck again and his grandmother died, Simon – terrified of further loss – made a vow to dedicate his life to his faith and to keeping Levi safe and happy:

“This will be my exile. I will give it all up. Just… let Levi have what he wants. Let me keep him.”

Fifteen years later, Simon, who has never found it easy to make friends or cope in social situations, is struggling to keep the Chametz Bakery going, still putting Levi first and has never had a relationship – he’s still a virgin at thirty-six.

You can read the rest of this review at AudioGals.