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Summary

Hope Dunne has carved out a name for herself as a top photographer, known the joys of marriage and motherhood and the heartbreak of loss. In her chic SoHo loft, Hope is content with her life, finding serenity and beauty through the lens of her camera. She isn't looking for a man or excitement.

But these things find her when she accepts a last-minute assignment to fly to London at Christmas and photograph one of the world's most celebrated writers - an Irish-American author known for novels of thrilling literary darkness.

To Hope's surprise, Finn O'Neill exudes warmth and a boyish charm. Enormously successful, he is a perfect counterpoint to Hope's quiet, steady grace - and he's taken instantly by her. He courts her as no one ever has before, whisking her away to his palatial, isolated Irish estate.

Hope finds it all, and him, irresistible. But soon cracks begin to appear in his stories: gaps in his history, lies and bouts of jealousy unnerve her. Suddenly Hope is both in love and suspicious, caring and deeply in doubt, and ultimately frightened of the man she loves.

Alone, thousands of miles from home, her mind is reeling. Is it possible that this adoring, attentive man - like the characters in his novels - is hiding something even worse? The spell cast by a brilliant sociopath has her trapped in his web, too confused and dazzled to escape, as he continues to tighten his grip on her.

©2009 Danielle Steel (P)2009 Brilliance Audio, Inc.

What members say

Average customer ratings

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Story

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Something missing in the narration

A good storyline, however I felt that the narrator made Hope sound like a ‘rabbit in headlights’ all the time , unable to do a convincing woman’s voice spoiled it for me somewhat and felt being set mostly in Ireland an Irish narrator may have been better. A huge build up to a fast ending left me feeling there was ‘unfinished business ‘ not one of my favourites of Danielle’s books sorry

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • mazo
  • Birmingham, United Kingdom
  • 06-04-18

Terrible book from DS

Would you try another book written by Danielle Steel or narrated by Mel Foster?

I normally love her books but this made me mad, it was an awful story with an awful narrator. Hearing how terrible he was to her and then she returns to him, having heard a lot of real stories about abuse to woman this does not ring true at all. Women have moved on from being helpless and unable to cope on our own without a man. I kept reading thinking there would be a twist in the story but I just could not listen any more.

What will your next listen be?

I normally like Danielle Steel but this has nocked my confidence in her writing.

How did the narrator detract from the book?

He sounded like a computer voice that you get on you tube.

You didn’t love this book--but did it have any redeeming qualities?

Non. It made me very cross

Any additional comments?

Non

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Ml
  • ChesieresSwitzerland
  • 20-06-09

Very disappointing read

I was looking for a nice, relaxing listen, but found this book very repetitive, boring and a complete waste of time and money. I would not recommend this book, and if possible would rate it zero stars.

1 of 3 people found this review helpful

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Rachel
  • 12-03-12

Much better than expected

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

This book actually had some depth which is a little unusual for this author I really enjoyed it. I felt like I learned something reading.It is one that I would listen to again and again. I felt like it was much better than I was expecting. I was expecting a readable but very shallow book and I actually got something that was very readable but with some depth and I would very highly recommend this one.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Matters of the Heart?

The main character's first photo session.

What does Mel Foster bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

I didn't feel that this book should've been read by man. It's a woman story. I would love to have heard it read by one of the good women narrators, like CJ Critt or Barbara Rosenblatt -but not a man. It is a woman's story and it should be read by woman. I don't think that the narration did anything for the story. He'd be fine reading a John Grisham or something that is about a man, he's fine narrator.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I was moved when the character continued to go back even when things weren't the way they should be. That was a very real emotion and it was very moving.

Any additional comments?

Reading about a sociopath was very interesting I think that we meet them every day and reading this book could help us to recognize certain behaviors. I found that some of the behavior was a bit like is used by cult leaders. I believe, I've heard it called love bombing.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Erin
  • 30-04-12

I heard you the first time

Would you try another book from Danielle Steel and/or Mel Foster?

Probably not

Has Matters of the Heart turned you off from other books in this genre?

no

Did the narration match the pace of the story?

yes

Any additional comments?

The book could be cut by at least 1/4 if Danielle Steele would quit repeating herself and stating the obvious. It did not change the story line to tell me 4 times that authors don't pay income tax in Ireland. Her writing was good enough that I understood the emotion or implication but the next sentence spelled it out as if I have no understanding of English. I don't remember her writing being so redundant but I will remember now to steer clear of Danielle Steele.

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Maureen
  • 25-03-12

The Worst

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

This was the worst audio book I have ever listened too. The last Danielle Steele book I read was over 20 years ago and now I remember why.



Has Matters of the Heart turned you off from other books in this genre?

Definitely!

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Mel Foster?

Anyone, he was laughable. He reminded me of Peterman on Seinfeld. I still don't understand why a man was telling this woman's story.

If you could play editor, what scene or scenes would you have cut from Matters of the Heart?

I would cut out every other line of the book, it would not have made a difference because it was so repetitive

2 of 2 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Pamela
  • 10-06-09

Loved it!! Keep me up all night listening!!

I loved the character Hope in this book. This book is so realistic because it shows how even a smart, independent woman like her can be fooled by a smooth talking sociopath! Danielle Steel is so current and up with today's times because there are men and women out there today that are extremely smart and cunning and dangerous and she shows us that we shouldn't be afraid to love but also keep our eyes open and aware and "watch our back" so to speak! Loved it and think it's a must read for anyone whether you are just entering the dating scene or back into it! She gives us brilliantly smart insight through these realistically believable characters. Danielle Steel has either done remarkable research or has known someone who has gone through something like this. Great work Ms. Steel and keep the work coming! You're one of my favorite authors!!

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Christine
  • 05-06-09

Another disappointment from Steel

As Ms. Steel continues to pump out her novels, the quality has steadily declined. I have found her last several books to be shallow and predictable, with very sloppy endings. I find this heroine to be weak and could we say slightly stupid. No one is that naive, certainly not a woman in her 40's. I wish Ms. Steel could go back and write the way she did 20 years ago. Those early novels were spellbinding. It's a shame they are not available on Audible.

3 of 4 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Amazon Customer
  • 10-09-18

Excellent Novel

Once again Danielle Steele provides an excellent novel!! Because of this fine, relaxing read, I will read another one.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • mhhorses
  • 18-01-18

On the edge of my seat

If you could sum up Matters of the Heart in three words, what would they be?

Holy Crap Batman!

What other book might you compare Matters of the Heart to and why?

not sure

Which character – as performed by Mel Foster – was your favorite?

well in my opinion, he did a great job of all of them, I was able to tell the difference of which one he was speaking.

Did you have an extreme reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

It made me mad that Hope kept going back to him, anyone driving past me while I was listening to the book would have seen me shake my head etc. but it does show that people let love lead, no matter what.

Any additional comments?

I love Danielle Steel books, and this one has gotten the most reaction, I am not quite finished listening to it yet.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • A
  • 19-09-17

great.

loved it. love reading about strong women. would like more of these stories. love Danielle Stelle

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars
  • anna
  • 22-01-17

Beware of the the Sociopaths In your life

Would you recommend this audiobook to a friend? If so, why?

Absolutely. People need to learn from the characters in this book

What other book might you compare Matters of the Heart to and why?

No sure yet... This is the first time I have read a book with this type of mental manipulation in it.

Which scene was your favorite?

My favorite scene in this book was when the Leading female character stood firm and rebuffed the threats and insults thrown at her as attempts to convince her to share her bank account.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

Yes, the story line was very intriguing and revealing. There were so many "eye-opening" incidents in this story, which caused me to keep listening in anticipation of the next action coming from each character.

Any additional comments?

This book through me for a loop...I didn't read the description of the story-line prior to listening to the book so the story kept revealing surprises for the listener, which gave me much to look forward to.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Norma Gozner
  • 10-10-16

Matters of the Heart

A story of a very controlling man and the woman who loved him until his control almost took her life.