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  • The First Love

  • By: Erinne Bates
  • Narrated by: Lucy Emerson
  • Length: 5 hrs and 47 mins
  • 4.8 out of 5 stars (6 ratings)

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The First Love cover art

The First Love

By: Erinne Bates
Narrated by: Lucy Emerson
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Summary

When 17-year-old Calli meets her new riding instructor, Justine, their attraction to each other is nearly immediate. But while young Calli is learning what falling in love is about, Justine is driven by her competitive nature to have it all.

Twenty years after their initial meeting, Calli travels to France to write her new novel. It’s been 10 years since she’s last seen or heard from Justine, and all she knows of her is that she resides somewhere in France - and even that isn’t certain. If she were to find Justine, would she still be the same person and could they finally take the path they planned on so long ago?

Is anyone ever truly free from their first love?

©2020 M.N. Olivieri (P)2020 M.N. Olivieri
  • Unabridged Audiobook
  • Categories: LGBTQ+

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Listener received this title free

A promising debut

When Calli’s mother insists she takes a riding class with twelve-year-old boys, the seventeen-year-old isn’t happy, until she meets the instructor. A former Olympic equestrian athlete from Ireland, Justine steals Calli’s breath. And when she’s looking for a place to stay and Calli’s parents offer her brother’s room, all sorts of dreams come true. Until life interferes and the young women get separated for many years.

I didn’t enjoy this book as much as I hoped I would. The narration was pretty good, even with the foreign accents. I’m always rather tough on French accents and Lucy Emerson’s was okay, but do the French really not know about dirty martinis? I had never before heard of vodka with olives. Then again, I don’t drink cocktails… And is going to the Louvre such a big event when you’re staying in Versailles? I mean, yes, the Louvre is wonderful, but why does it sound like Calli wouldn’t have found her way there without Justine? Didn’t anyone tell her about the RER?

I know these remarks aren’t very important and they probably wouldn’t have stuck with me if I had been carried away by the story. I felt the book stayed on the surface of things for more than half of it. I never really connected with the characters and didn’t find them very likeable. At first, I was surprised by both young women’s immaturity (Justine is twenty-one at the beginning, so not a teenager anymore, a young woman with a job, far from home). I quite liked the chemistry between them, and that’s something that stayed until the end. Far from being a sweet romance about two young women and their first love, this novel is really about Calli’s journey to get over this very powerful first love.

Most reviews are very positive so it’s probably just that this book isn’t for me. The First Love is a debut novel, and as such, it’s promising.

I received a copy of this audiobook from Audiobooks Unleashed in exchange for a fair and unbiased review.

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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lovely and well narrated story

Tags: first love, age gap, art

Book: This is my first book by Erinne Bates. The story is nicely and interesting written. Without spoiling too much, I did root for another pairing, but in the end it all fitted the Storyline. I enjoyed this book very much.

Narration: This was my first time listening to a narration from Lucy Emerson. I don’t like new narrators, because I know a couple of very good ones. But I have to say i was positively surprised! She portrayed the storyline in a fluid and gentle way. This audiobook will not be the last one I’ll be listening from Lucy Emerson.

Rating: five out of five

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