Review of ’16 Steps to forever’ by Georgia Beers, Audiobook narrated by Lori Prince
Georgia Beers is one of my favourite lesbian romance authors and her books are an automatic read for me. But with the audiobook version narrated by Lori Prince released almost at the same time as the book, I jumped into the chance of listening to one of the best combinations of author and narrator that there is in lesfic.
In need of a change from Ohio and her Conservative family, real estate agent Brooke Sullivan moves to upstate New York. She’s still adapting to her new life and isn’t looking for anyone until she literally collides with Macy Carr, an adorable property stager. Macy isn’t looking for anyone as she lost the love of her life a few years ago but the beautiful and intriguing Brooke is hard to resist…
This was a light, low on angst lesbian romance with lovable main characters and a cast of endearing secondary including a stray cat, a bunch of other furry characters, and a hot real estate boss (who has her own story in Beers’s novella in ‘All I want for Christmas’ compilation).
It’s common knowledge that romance novels follow a formula and the ubiquitous “black moment” at the 80% mark doesn’t surprise anyone. However, it’s a nice change when said conflict is strong and religorganic to the story, such as in this novel. The conflict here not only makes sense but also adds tension and is resolved in an emotional manner. Kudos to Ms. Beers to achieve this feat realistically. It made my day.
Without losing its light-hearted feel, the novel explores deeper themes such as biphobia, sexual identity in teenagers, bereavement and religion. However, the focus is high on the romance so don’t expect much of those secondary plot lines, which makes sense in the context of the story. But it’s good to see them being mentioned in general.
The audiobook narrated by Lori Prince, as usual, brought the written text to life with intensity, humour, and sensuality. It’s not surprising as Ms. Prince is one of my favourite narrators in lesfic. It didn’t hurt that she used what I call her “Thayer voice” (after her portrayal of Thayer Reynolds in Carolyn Elizabeth’s ‘Gallows Humor’) for hot real estate agent Brooke. Lesfic fans everywhere will be as ecstatic as me. 5 stars.