Seoafin "Finnie" Wilde was taught by her parents that every breath was a treasure and to seek every adventure she could find. And she learns this lesson the hard way when they perish in a plane crash. But she never forgets, and when she discovers there is a parallel universe where every person has a twin, she finds a witch who can send her there so she can have the adventure of a lifetime. But upon arrival in the Winter Wonderland of Lunwyn, she realizes she's been played by her twin and finds herself walking down the aisle to be wed to The Drakkar.
Thrown into inauspicious circumstances, with years of practice, Finnie bests the challenges and digs into her adventure. But as Frey Drakkar discovers the woman who is his new wife is not Princess Sjofn, a woman he dislikes, but instead his Finnie, a free spirit with a thirst for adventure just like him, without her knowledge he orders his new bride bound to his frozen world, everlasting. But at the same time, Frey plunges Finnie into a web of political intrigue that includes assassination plots, poison, magic, mystery and...dragons.
©2015 Kristen Ashley (P)2016 Audible, Inc.
I just cannot like any single character in the book. The writing is very good and there is nothing to complain there but the characters are everything I hate in books: a girl that cries and expects to be rescued, a man who is overbearing and selfish...
I was a skeptic of audible books, but I've been won over! I listen to my books everywhere, even while cooking. Audible is a perfect escape!
It stands in a class of its own - sci-fi soft porn? It is one of the sexiest most addictive reads I've ever read.
Most would say a sci-fi "50 Shades of Gray" but I beg to differ. It's a saucy read no doubt but it has a great romantic story thwarted with problems of political/power struggles, a clash of culture and discrimination on several issues. It's an all encompassing goodread which ranks higher than ordinary porn fiction of E.L. James and Sylvia Day by virtue of its elements of fantasy that make is a real erotic escape!
Everything - she did a good job of representing the voices of stern, strong male and fragile/softer females...her ability and voice range is impeccable
Ooh, I'm not sure but I'm sure if anyone could replicate the sexual activity in detail (which is the most enjoyable part of the read), it would certainly be too pornographic for the big screen
Otherworldly, Elves and Dragons
Finnie, She was a total kickass heroine. Who found a wish to help her travel to another "Earth" and she took the whole adventure in her stride.
It was ok and she pronounced all the strange words spot on.
Frey coming back.
This book is full of well developed characters, great plot, lots of emotion, and the bark of a Adela tree.
"Ho, Boy! Adventure, Romance And Great Characters!"
This was my first Kristen Ashley story and "wow" it was amazing! She did an wonderful job creating such a unique and fantastical world, where both the plot and characters were well developed. I loved Finnie and Frey! Finnie was something else.
Tillie Hooper's performance ROCKED! She did an amazing job on the different characters, and delivered the witty dialogue flawlessly. I will definitely be on the lookout for more stories narrated by her!
Well worth a credit!
"Witty, romantic fantasy, and WELL narrated!"
Thank you for getting the narration Right on this one.
This is a very fun and at times very moving read. On to the next one in the series.
This story had it all great story. Highly recommended Finney comes from our earth to its alternative universe sister to see her parents again having lost her own when she was 15. Her alternative self also wants to switch but doesn't fully disclose her reasons and situation. When Finney arrives she is immediately dragged off to her arranged marriage.
Clearly she is confused but she is plucky, thinks on her feet and is up to meet her adventure head on.
The dialogue is witty the story cute romantic and full of twists. Definitely worth a credit
"Kristen Ashley is a rock star!"
Such a rich vibrant new world. It's such an awesome blend of the modem with almost a historical novel feel with the addition of magic and dragons. Perfection!
"& THE OSCAR FOR BEST FANTASY EVER GOES TO... KRISTEN ASHLEY"
When two new books by Kristen Ashley were initially listed on Audible's website they weren't listed as book 1 and book 2 in her new Fantasyland series - so I first listened to book 2.... and I was blown away by the descriptive imagery, the imaginative scenes, the characters, the romance, the humorous banter and the clever parallel Universe storyline that KA had conjured up for her fans. And so, as I started listening to this book, I thought I knew what a great listen awaited me - but boy was I wrong.... because it wasn't just great... it was FAN.FREAKIN.TASTIC.
Yes, it had all of the above great qualities but along with them came such a wonderful sweet romance between Adventurer Finnie and her new Alpha husband Frey - and wow their chemistry was there right from their awkward first meeting... as they passionately kissed after their strained and strange wedding ceremony. Finnie didn't know she was going to swop her normal everyday life for a beautiful but dangerous life being an Ice Princess married to The Drakker... a man who controls Elves and Dragons. From the start I was riveted - eagerly savoring and greedily devouring ever mouthwatering chapter and, as all the thrilling hours whizzed by, I knew I was listening to perfection.... perfection within the fantasy genre, perfection by its gifted Author and perfection for its narrator who, WITHOUT A DOUBT, made this awesome book into such a breathtaking and magical book. Tillie Hooper's narration captured and expressed a full range of emotions as well as breathing life into all the characters while easily delivering on the varying accents, genders and mystical creatures called for... from the multitude of loveable cast members including a sexy caring hero and a feisty easygoing loving heroine - to the sleazy, the weird and the deadly enemies of the Realm. Mainly told from Finnie's POV and although each book very briefly mentions 'situations' from couples in other Realms, they are (so far) singular stories.
Worth a credit? If you like the Fantasy Romance genre then it surely doesn't get better than this... unless, of course, it's another book written by KA.... so YES it's worth a credit or $$ - just don't miss it. Now I'm eagerly waiting for the other 3 books in this wonderful series.... which will be auto-downloads as soon as they come out.
"I gave it an honest try..."
...but I was so annoyed that I couldn't finish it. Maybe the ending is stellar and will redeem the bad writing and vapid lead, but I got a little over half way through before being too revolted to keep listening another 7 hours. The narrator did well enough, considering how little she had to work with. So...here's the laundry list:
Problem 1: the writing. "Soooo coooool" and "frickin awesome" would be acceptable in moderation, but those are the main adjectives. Kristen, get a thesaurus! Also, the dialogue is inauthentic, and her descriptions of emotions and emotional growth are ham-handed. Her descriptions of places and sex scenes are good, but that is not enough to support the plot.
Problem 2: Finnie is horrendous. Aside from the choice to go to the parallel world, she doesn't make any major decisions or assert herself; things just happen to her. That is absolutely not in the spirit of an adventurer, so her primary motivation immediately falls through. Her other motivation, grief, is treated superficially, so there's really no other motivation to make her interesting or sympathetic. However, it's awesome to see a female protagonist who chooses to be domestic and really owns her femininity, given that so many female protagonists take on traditionally masculine traits, so hooray! There is a redeeming quality!
Problem 2(a): Whenever Sjofn is discussed, she sounds much more interesting than Finnie. Why aren't we reading about her?
Problem 3: this book is surprisingly anti-woman. I expect women authors to know better than to write so many women who are motivated only by the need to impress men. Most of the women are shallow, irrational, don't make their own decisions, or all three. The relationships between the women are completely unrealistic, and there is a conversation where Finnie's other mother actually tells her that she just needs to sleep with Frey more and then he'll be faithful. Ugh. Finnie is not responsible for Frey's behavior, period, but Finnie doesn't seem to realize this. For the author to claim that women are responsible for men's actions, especially when the women don't actually make many significant choices, is both ridiculous and medieval.
Problem 4: Frey is boring. He doesn't respect women, as shown by his conversation with his second-in-command right at the beginning of the book, and he's never willing to meet Finnie halfway; she always has to accommodate him. He is emotionally two dimensional and magically overpowered to boot. He's basically an anime hero, or something you would expect from an adolescent male writing a wish-fulfillment character.
Problem 5: Plot? What plot? The only plot points that I was trying to stick it out for were a) dragons, and b) Finnie's response when she finds out Frey has bound her to the parallel world. Maybe then she will grow a backbone.
So, in conclusion, bleh. Don't waste your money.
"Fantasyland!!! Finnie!!! Finally!!!!!"
Kristen Ashley is the shit. That is all.
I do not "read." I listen. So, while I adore KA (in a pathetic fan-girl way that is totally out of character for my usual badassness), I had not yet experienced the fabulosity that is the Fantasyland series (or The Three-sigh) because I NEED the audiobooks…like I need air and water. I knew it would be good. I knew it would be awesome. I knew I would love it. I will not rehash the blurb above or dissect KA's writing. If she writes romance, get it. If she writes YA, get it. If she writes fantasy, get it. If she writes paranormal, get it. If she writes an insurance company's Terms of Agreement, read it. It will be amazing. Just get it. It's all good, great, too good, too much, too beautiful, and this one is FANTASTIC! You will love Finnie. You will love Frey. You will love it.
OK, so I listen, and I really appreciate it when my listening is bumped up to experiencing. Tillie Hooper is AWESOME!!!! Excellent male and female voices, perfect inflection and emotion. There are SO many characters in this book, and she performs them all beautifully. This was my first TH listen, but it will not be my last. She reminds me of another favorite performer, but I won't say who in case I'm wrong. Can't wait to dig into Golden Dynasty!!!!!! BTW, brand-new Book 5 in the series comes out mid-August, so let's hope we can have all 5 on audio by then. Having a new-to-me KA series narrated perfectly? Made. My. Summer.
"Beyond Your Wildest Dreams!!!"
I love this series!!! Finnie is wealthy, young, adventurous, and misses her deceased parents desperately. She learns of a parallel world where everyone has a twin and for a lot of money, months of planning, and a powerful modern day witch it's time to switch places with her "twin" so that she can see her "parents" again. Unfortunately her twin in the parallel world wasn't exactly forthcoming and what awaits her in the other world is way beyond her "Wildest Dreams".
Upon landing in the other world she is informed that she is a Princess ("The Winter Princess") and is immediately prepared to marry Frey Drakker, who makes it abundantly clear that he's not happy about their arranged marriage. Frey is a big, handsome, proud, and fierce man who is a Raider and King to The Elves and Dragons!!
Finnie has a wild ride ahead of her and what a fantastic journey it is! I love this world KA has created.
My only complaint is the narrator who does a great job on the female voices, but, when doing the hero's voice (or other males) she uses a really deep growly voice....making them all sound seriously pissed off though out the book. Regardless, I have purchased the next book in the series "Golden Dynasty" which is my favorite in the series, hopefully narrator Tillie Hooper will find her groove as the series progresses.
"Great Story but a Predictable Plot"
This is definitely one of those feel-good romance novels. However, the story itself was really different from typical romance novels and I enjoyed the bit of magic intermixed with the romance. The plot line was ok, but at times too predictable. The narrator did a good job, but there were times when it was very clear that there had been a break in recording. There were a few glitches here and there where sound bites were in the wrong place and you'd hear something from later on in the book or there would be sentences that would just stop, without being finished. Minor, but noticeable.
With all that being said, I would recommend this book for someone who enjoys a good romance that isn't into extremely explicit scenes. It's an easy book to follow and I do intend to seek out the next book in the series, assuming there is one. :)
"I hope this series lasts a long time"
I will be honest. With the type of books that KA has been writing, I wasn't sure she would be able to pull off this genre. I was wrong. I have never given five stars, all around, to any of the thousands of books I have read or listened to; this is the first. I can't even find fault with the narration. It was perfect, you will love it!
-V from Kansas
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