Review of The Red Files by Lee Winter, audiobook narrated by Victoria Mei
I’ve read this book when was first released in 2015 and absolutely loved it but for some bizarre reason resisted listening to the audiobook. Maybe it’s because I’m not that familiar with narrator Victoria Mei even though I’ve only heard great things about her talent. I’m glad I’ve finally decided to give it a go, it was so much worth it.
Lauren King is a junior entertainment journalist with the dream of becoming a political columnist and an ice queen for a boss. Catherine Ayers was once a top political correspondent in Washington DC who was demoted to the newspaper entertainment department after a story gone wrong. Ayers seems fixated on making Lauren’s life miserable but when Lauren discovers a lead that could develop into a giant corruption story, both women start investigating together and, in the process, making enemies and falling for each other.
This is a mystery novel mixed with a heavy dose of romance. The romance is very typical of this author: opposites-attract, age gap, and ice queen tropes mixed in an explosive combination. Ms. Winter writes ice queens exquisitely in a witty, sardonic but oh so alluring way and Catherine Ayers is a fantastic example.
The novel is written in third person from Lauren’s point of view which makes Ayers even more aloof and intriguing, Ms. Winter writes beautifully the way Ayers’s walls start to crumble thanks to Lauren’s own appeal as an honest, naive, and straightforward county girl. Slowly but surely, the author builds rapport between the characters, all in the midst of a mystery that they need to solve until it’s impossible for them to deny their mutual attraction and hard not to act on it. Ms. Winter finds the perfect balance between action, mystery and romance that promises to keep the fans of both genres happy and entertained. The Red Files is Lee Winter’s debut novel which makes it even more impressive.
The audiobook is narrated by Victoria Mei who doesn’t seem to read much lesfic which is a pity because she does an excellent job. This is hands down the best female narrator for interpreting male voices, even better than Abby Craden or Angela Dawe, which says a lot. Considering there are quite a few male characters in this book, Ms. Mei was an excellent choice. The rest is equally impressive: her voices are all distinctive, the performance of emotions outstanding, the narration pace spot on. It definitely added value to an already excellent book. Highly recommended. 5 stars.
Length: 11 hours, 17 minutes