Review of ‘The Rainbow Cedar’ by Gerri Hill,
Audiobook narrated by Abby Craden
I read this book in 2016 and didn’t like it. I couldn’t remember much so I decided to listen to the audiobook as Abby Craden is one of my favourite narrators. Unfortunately, not even her impeccable narration could change my first impression of this story.
When interior designer Jay Burns met landscape creator Drew Montgomery they both felt an irresistible attraction. Jay is in a long-term relationship that currently is in crisis but she is willing to make it work. As their attraction grows, a series of events will put them together in a tropical paradise and will test their relationship to its limits…
The issue with this novel isn’t that it’s badly written or that it’s unrealistic. Exactly the opposite. As a matter of fact, in real life you see examples of stories like this one very often, it’s kind of a lesbian commonplace. Having said that, even though this is a typical romance that doesn’t deviate from the usual formula, I wouldn’t recommend it to romance fans. Why? Because it deals with the tricky issue of infidelity.
Everyone knows that romance novels and infidelity don’t go well together, romance readers normally try to escape from these displeasing and unfortunately too common circumstances. No wonder romance writers avoid this issue like the plague. There’s no way to spin infidelity to make it sound romantic and ‘The Rainbow Cedar’ is no exception. No amount of characters’ chemistry or contextual explanation justifies the fact that one or both characters are doing something downright anti-romantic.
Leaving this major issue aside, the book is well written and enjoyable. The characters’ chemistry is very good, the dialogues engaging, the natural setting is beautiful and the intimate scenes are great. As usual, Abby Craden did a fantastic job with the narration, the distinctive voices, the performance of the feelings, the overall narration tone. I’d say that she did the best that she could with the story and made my listening experience much better than my reading did. However, with so many fantastic audiobooks in the Hill-Craden partnership, this wouldn’t be my first choice. It is included with your Scribd subscription if you want to give it a try. An ok lesbian romance with infidelity audiobook. 3.5 stars.
Duration: 5 hours, 42 minutes.