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Evanthia's Gift

The Gift Saga, Book 1
Narrated by: Emily Lawrence
Series: The Gift Saga, Book 1
Length: 17 hrs and 23 mins
Categories: Fiction, Sagas
5 out of 5 stars (9 ratings)

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Summary

In the year 1956, Anastacia Fotopoulos finds herself pregnant and betrayed, fleeing from a bad marriage. With the love and support of her dear friends Stavros and Soula Papadakis, Ana is able to face the challenges of single motherhood. Left with emotional wounds, she resists her growing affection for Alexandros Giannakos, an old acquaintance. But his persistence and unconditional love for Ana and her child is eventually rewarded and his love is returned. In a misguided, but well-intentioned effort to protect the ones they love, both Ana and Alex keep secrets - ones that could threaten the delicate balance of their family. 

The story continues in the 1970's as Dean and Demi Papadakis, and Sophia Giannakos attempt to negotiate between two cultures. Now Greek-American teenagers, Sophia and Dean, who have shared a special connection since childhood, become lovers. Sophia is shattered when Dean rebels against the pressure his father places on him to uphold his Greek heritage and hides his feelings for her. When he pulls away from his family, culture and ultimately his love for her, Sophia is left with no choice but to find a life different from the one she'd hoped for. 

Evanthia's Gift is a multigenerational love story spanning 50 years and crossing two continents, chronicling the lives that unify two families.

©2015 Effie Kammenou (P)2017 Effie Kammenou

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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Wonderful audiobook - well written story

~I received a copy of this audiobook in exchange for an honest review~

This audiobook really amazed me. I rarely gives a book five stars, but this time I did!!
It’s the first book of three in “The Gift Saga”. It’s a heart-warming family saga about a Greek-American family and their life in Greece and NY (America).

The book starts with the story of Anastacia, as she returns home and finds her husband betraying her with another woman. She leaves him, and she doesn’t tell him she’s pregnant. She stays as a single mother for several years, not trusting her heart to another man. Not until ……… I think you should listen to the audiobook and experience the very well written Saga of Anastacia’s life with her Greek family and best friends, her daughter Sophia, the love of her life - and as times goes by Sophia grows up and we starts to follow her life too.

It’s a heartwarming story, and I had to listen to all of the audiobook without stopping. I just fell in love with this lovely family and their friends, with their stubbornness, their difficult life situations, their heartaches, the wonderful Greek recipes (included in the book) and most of all their unconditional love and support for each other.

Effie Kammenou has done an amazing job writing this book. And I can’t wait to start the next audiobook in this series - but I think I better wait until the morning, because I already know I will have a hard time stopping listening, but unfortunately I need some sleep before work tomorrow ;)

I listened to the Audible edition narrated by Emily Lawrence. The Saga and her voice is the perfect match. She did an excellent job and I really enjoyed her voice. Sometimes a book and a narrator is the perfect match - for me this was one of the perfect matches!

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Packed full of emotion

This book is not for emotionally shy people! I cried pretty much all the way through!! LOL. It’s a heartfelt book. Emily is brilliant, so many accents, and a beautiful tone to her voice.

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The Right Gift

The gift of the right person is a wonderful gift. When the right comes along and shows you what intimacy is really like. Having that person know your truth and accepting of your truth and being happy loving you for living your truth. I understand how people think that hiding a part of themselves is ok, but when you finally open up is amazing. I am so glad there is a book two of this book. I am a huge fan of stories that has a location of Greece. I love hearing about the culture. This book had love, loss, love and happily ever after. Best book I read in a while.

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This audio is a gift

Book 1 in the series. I totally understand how the author feels and writes the story. Being Greek myself I felt this story and understood what Effie wrote about . How the characters were torn between the cultures of both countries. Even though they were Greek and was born in Greece they now live in NYC .
Heroine is Anastacia.
Anastacia had a hard time in the USA . Betrayed by her husband, with her sister no less . Caught them doing the act . Pregnant and having the baby alone .
Anastacia has a change at a new life , new carrier, new love if she grabs the opportunity. The first part tells everything Anastacia went through while having Sophie. It tells of a love story that is pure of heart between Anastacia and Alexis . How Alexis held back at the beginning when he first meet Anastacia. It was love at first site for Alex , Alex was waiting in the wings .
Also the story tells what Sophie went through being an American Greek , the pull and Push of both cultures. Sophie keeping things from Anastacia trying to protect her . Sophie falls for Dean . Sophie had fells for Dean , Kostadino , but Dino thought of Sophie as a sister , they grew up together .
Grab it and see if Sophie father finds out about her , does Dino grab a hold of the love that is right in front of him

Emily Lawrence performance was fantastic. Her Greek was great , her tone for the story was great .

I am reviewing this story for Audiobook Obsession and the views are my own

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Evanthia's Gift

The narration by Emily Lawrence was amazing. The accenting, and voices were very well done.

Overall I really enjoyed the book, it was well written and I loved the pieces of real Greek history and traditions, but I had two big issues with it. My first issue was that Ana & Alex's story should have been a prequel or book 1 and separated from Sophie & Dean's story. I also felt the amount of time that it took for the couple to get back together (20 years) seems a bit too much, too unrealistic for each to wait and still have feelings.

Overall I enjoyed Ana & Alex's story way more than Sophie & Dean's but I was sucked into the drama of it all till the very end.

#AudiobookObsession
🎧AudiobookObsession

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sweet!

Evanthia's Gift was such a wonderfully sweet love story! I Effie told this multigenerational love story in such a beautiful way. I was touched and thoroughly enjoyed the ride.

Emily did a fantastic job with the narration. She truly brought the characters to life in an amazing way. Great job!

🎧AudiobookObsession🎧

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Touchingly Beautiful

I have never read a book that I have been so moved by as I was this book. It's a story about family, relationships, love, second chances, life, death. I felt like I was a part of the story. I learned a lot about Greek culture because of this book. It's authentic and beautiful. It's touching. I had to fight not to cry several times. The narrator did a fantastic job. She made an already beautiful story even more amazing. This is a new to me narrator, but I'm glad I listened to this. I would love to listen to the rest of this series. I'm fully invested in this. It's like I'm reading about my own family!

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  • bluepits73
  • @AudiobookObsession Houston, TX
  • 03-06-19

Two Amazing Stories in One

There are two parts to this book. We first have Anastacia and Alexandro's story in part one and then we have Sophie and Dean's story in part two. Both parts in this generational set are very well written and the chemistry between both couples is evident throughout. I definitely got a book hangover because I didn't want to turn it off. Each story is similar in that it centers around Greek culture and very heavily emphasizes the importance of family; they are also both second chance romances. However, the style of second chance is different for each couple.

I loved each story and they were both masterfully written and evoked plenty of emotion and feelings throughout. I love a good second chance love story and these are both heartwarming in their own way. Anastacia and Alexandro's story was beautifully written in that he heals her and she learns how to love again. I think Sophie and Dean's story is more tragic and sad due to other family events that occurred throughout their lives that brought them back together. It does make me sad that it took them so long to find their way back to each other. This author did an amazing job incorporating familial ties and events throughout each. Amazing.

This narration did an absolutely phenomenal job captivating the authors words and bringing the love between all these characters throughout the book to life. She exhibited amazing accents when needed and gave the perfect amount of emotion in her voice as the character's lives progressed. Beautiful performance!

I received a review copy at my request and have voluntarily left this unbiased review.

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An engaging story with excellent narration

I really enjoyed listening to Evanthia’s Gift. Emily Lawrence does an excellent job narrating this story and I felt she brought extra depth and emotion to an already engaging story.

The story captured my attention on so many levels; it’s an absorbing family saga with great insight into traditions and the role tradition plays in decision making. I learned about some historical events that I was not previously aware of. And it was a trip down memory lane recalling the fashions and music of the 70s.

Some chapter ends feature Greek recipes. This was an unexpected treat but they’re somewhat superfluous to an audio book as the times I listen to audio books, I am not in a position to transcribe the recipes to paper.

Effie Kammenou’s writing is tight and the story is well plotted. I look forward to listening to more of her stories.

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  • G C
  • 06-11-19

LOVED IT!

I absolutely loved it! This book caught my attention from the very beginning and held it throughout the entire book. The narration was superb and gave the story that extra flair! The author did an excellent job with the character builds and plot. This was my first book by this author but definitely not my last! I look forward to reading the next book in this series! I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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  • Monica Sofia
  • 12-09-19

Not related to Mamma Mia! :)

I had a good start to this beautifuly narrated greek saga!

Anastacia and Alex’s story was very enjoyable. Interesting characters who survived the WWII time in Greece.

Anyone would relate to the family drama, translating to the next generation, their struggles and heartbreaks.
Second generation of the family was getting on my nerves, so I didn't like it as much... but such is life.

When it moved to Sophia, their daughter, and her love, annoying dependence of Dean, who doesn’t deserve her. What a jerk... the book felt like two separated stories.

However, amazing accent for the first generation of characters, the narrator did a good job with the variety of voices from the multiple pov's.

A long book, but nice and enjoyable!

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  • Mai Tai Mama
  • 02-08-19

Amazing greek saga

I'm hooked and I think I was from the moment I sampled this audiobook. The narrator is that good--it's like she was born for the role. The story-line is phenomenal. I haven't read a saga in a long time and this is the first time I have read one with Greek characters and culture. I became immersed in the multi-generational characters--the love, the drama, the passions. The love and heartache the characters experienced was palpable. I loved learning about the Greek traditions and the recipes were an interesting touch. I'm moving on to the next in this series ASAP.

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  • Melissa
  • 20-06-19

Inspiring story of true love and fate

I absolutely loved learning about all these characters. I loved how the author incorporated the use of Greeks recipe and traditions in this book.
This is a story of true love destined to be together from childhood. The trials and tribulations of your first love in childhood to your forever love in adulthood is expressed all through this book.
The narrator did an amazing job! I felt her joy, her pain, her sorrow, and her love for the characters.

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  • suesun
  • 14-06-19

Wonderful family love story

Evanthia’s Gift is such a beautiful book, that spanned multiple generations! I was actually sad when it came to an end.
This audible will go on my list of favorites that I return to over and over again.
Emily Lawrence has done a really great job capturing the essence of the characters in author’s story.
@audiobookobsession

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  • Sally Mieske
  • 07-06-19

Loved it ♥️

Evanthia’s Gift is a wonderful story spanning 3 generations and following two families. It tells of the hardships of love, family, following your dreams and trying to stay true to their Greek culture. It’s a story about finding yourself, whether it through true love or a rebellious teenager. It’s a long listen, but a good one. It definitely kept my interest and it was interesting to learn about the Greek culture. There are some really good recipes at the beginning of several chapters. Emily Lawrence did a fabulous job with the narration! Especially with all the different characters and the accents!

#audiobookobession 🎧

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  • Brandie @AudiobookObsession
  • 06-06-19

Sweet!

Evanthia's Gift was such a wonderfully sweet love story! I Effie told this multigenerational love story in such a beautiful way. I was touched and thoroughly enjoyed the ride.

Emily did a fantastic job with the narration. She truly brought the characters to life in an amazing way. Great job!

🎧AudiobookObsession🎧

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  • Krystyn - AudiobookObsession
  • 06-06-19

Heartfelt Listen

Evanthia's Gift is a beautiful story that spans 50 years and multiple generations, It shows love, strength, and survival. Effie did an amazing job with all of the characters and their individual stories. She truly knows how to write a book that will make you feel so many emotions. I know this book will stay with me for a long time!

Emily Lawrence did a fantastic job on the narration, I enjoyed her accents and the voices she gave to each character. I look forward to listening to more of her work.

🎧AudiobookObsession🎧

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  • shedevilreads
  • 04-06-19

Multigenerational Love Story

Evanthia's Gift By Effie Kammenou is a multigenerational love story spanning 50 years that I listened to on audio narrated by Emily Lawrence. Effie did an amazing job with this story. It made me laugh and cry. I really enjoyed the span of the book to get into the life of each generation of the family. This is the first book by Effie Kammenou that I have read and it definitely won’t be my last.

Emily Lawrence is an amazing narrator. I am really glad I listened to it on audio to hear her take with the different accents and tones for each character. I cannot wait to hear future projects from her. This was an amazing duo and cannot wait to get book 2 Waiting for Aegina.

I would recommend this book to anyone who loves contemporary romance.

#AudiobookObessionReviwer #AudioBookObsession

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  • Bette
  • 23-03-19

An Exceptional & Heartfelt Story! Great Listen🎧

I love books, I enjoy reading them and listening to audiobooks, sometimes separately, sometimes together. I did both with this book and it blew me away, the story and narration is beyond exceptional. It should be called Effie Kammenou’s gift because that is what it is. You can feel the love she put into this story flowing off the pages. It is well written and well told. The character development is beyond amazing. This multigenerational story begins with Anastasia in NYC it follows her throughout her life and meet her family and friends along the way. Actually you more than meet them you get to know them. I loved the bonds and friendship she shared with Soula and Stravos and how supportive they were from the start, also loved how protective her Uncle was too. I adored Alex, he was so loving and understanding. I was happy for Ana and Alex. The 2nd part of the book brings you to Sophia’s story, it includes all the people in her life, some you were introduced in the 1st part, others are the new people she meets in her life. You learn more of Dino & Demi, Soula and Stravos’ son and daughters and Sophie’s best friends and side kicks growing up. You are given views into their angsty teenage years and as they mature to adults, the paths they chose in life and lessons they learn. It is amazing how Effie Kammenou manages to bring the reader and/or listener into her story, places you right along side the characters, allowing you feel what they feel. I cried when they cried, felt their emotions and yes, I even got mad at some of their actions, mainly Dean’s and then Sophie’s. I can say so much more about this book, it is an original, heartfelt story, an exceptional one from start to end and I highly recommend it. I am looking forward to reading & listening to more of Effie Kammenou’s work. Thank you so much for this great & enjoyable story and for the for the great recipes too!

I listened to the Audible edition, Emily Lawrence is a wonderful narrator and voice performer. She performed the voices for all the characters, she brings them to life gives each their own unique sound and personality. She does an amazing job with the accents too. She is an entertaining storyteller and a pleasure to listen to!