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The Heart as He Hears It

Perspectives, Book 3
Narrated by: Guy Locke
Series: Perspectives (Arthur), Book 3
Length: 10 hrs and 57 mins
Categories: Fiction, Gay & Lesbian
4.5 out of 5 stars (16 ratings)

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Summary

While most of his friends have moved on to "real" careers, Jon Buchanan is content skating through life as a part-time waiter and gay porn star. Firmly single thanks to a previous relationship disaster, he focuses his spare time on Henry, a dear friend dying of cancer. And with Henry's happiness paramount, Jon is on a mission to help Henry meet his recently discovered grandson.

Isaac Gregory hasn't set foot outside for the past year. He has everything he needs delivered, and his remaining family knows better than to visit. When a complete stranger shows up claiming to be his grandfather - with a distractingly handsome younger man in tow - his carefully structured routines are shaken.

Despite his instant attraction, Jon senses that Isaac is too fragile for a relationship. Yet tentative friendship grows into genuine companionship. And when Henry's health begins to fail, they realize that fate brought them together for a reason.

Contains mature themes.

©2016 A. M. Arthur (P)2016 Tantor

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Beautiful

Jon and Isaacs journey had so many feels and when your listening to the heart as he hears it you feel everything

I laughed and cried and fell in love with Jon and Isaac all.over again guy Locke did such a beautiful job bringing them to life

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Want a good snooze

Where does The Heart as He Hears It rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

Sorry found this rather hard going and it was taking time getting into the story okay the abuse was sad yes but the story was rather boring

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Profile Image for Annika
  • Annika
  • 16-02-19

Loved the narration

The Heart as He Hears It is the third book in the Perspectives series. It can be read as a standalone as each book focuses on a new couple. They do appear as minor characters, but you won’t feel lost when they do.

Sadly, I just wasn’t feeling the magic this time around and I can’t really tell you why. I mean the story is a good one. I love dented characters and we got that here, there are plenty of issues going around with everything from eating disorders, anxiety and agoraphobia. I love to read about overcoming adversity and we got that here. We follow Isaac’s journey letting John and Henry in, first in his apartment and then into his life. Developing a friendship, learning about attraction and even venturing outside for a moment. So the story is there. The narration is there (more on that later), so why I just didn’t connect I sadly can’t answer. I do know that it’s all on me and not the book.

Guy Locke performed this book really well. The different voices made it easy to separate the characters and following along. He also captured the nuances of their personalities. Isaac’s fear and anxiety for almost everything. His fascination with new knowledge. The friendship between John and Henry also came through so clearly, as was the loss when he “finally” passed. He added a lot of feeling and emotions to the narration and brought the story to another level.

While I didn’t connect to the audio as I’d hoped I do recognise that’s all on me. The writing and story is there and the narration is a good one. So if you are looking for a new beginnings story with a lot of emotions this might be the book for you.

A copy of this book was generously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review for Love Bytes.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • DJR
  • 18-08-18

AM Arthur does emotionally handicapped sooooo well

Story is about the struggles of an anorexic and a shut in and no one writes this type of story better than AM Arthur. Both characters are heroes, using each other for support yet finding it within themselves when necessary. Even the secondary characters like Henry are written in such depth that you get to know them well without them taking away from the MC's story. And she always seems to incorporate an unexpected surprise or two in the story. Loved it.

Next book, I will have to read instead of listen to though. Narrator got worse with each book. Maybe I shouldn't have listened to all three within a month and I wouldn't have grown tired of him, but his drawling, near monotone voice started making the characters come of as unintelligent or slow witted. And he doesn't know how to pronounce t's. I won't listen to anything else narrated by him.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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  • Amanda McCoy
  • 25-04-16

Good story, not so good narrator

I like this series and enjoyed this book, but the narrator really killed it for me. There was no emotion and was just slow and monotone.

2 of 3 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Cranky Reader
  • 29-08-19

Starts well, ends wrong

This is the 3rd book in the series. I started with book 2 & loved it. I did not love this book. My review will have minor spoilers, which I will try to minimize. This book was about John coping with losing his best friend/father figure to cancer just after the friend finds his grandson, Isaac, who is a shut-in when we meet him. The story started well, if a little rushed with regard to Isaac’s progress but I was willing to go with it for a while because it was sweet and John and Isaac were wonderful together and, holiest of holies for a romance, they made each others lives better by being together.

What kept me from really liking this tale:
Isaac needs professional help and more friends. Yes, he had anxiety compounded by grief that he is finally willing to grow past when John makes the scene, but then the author threw the worst kind of trauma for Issac at him, which I thought went to far. At a minimum, he should have some therapy. Most people never deal with a brutal home invasion once, let alone thrice. As it stands, Isaac will lose his sanity if something happens to John. He needs John and that’s fine, but Isaac needs therapy and more friends. Within this book, I was looking for a backyard BBQ or some such thing because there seemed to be a set up for it that never materialized. They started to interact briefly with John’s friends & Isaac’s relatives by the end but there wasn’t a comfort level there that convinced me that Isaac would make more friends beyond John. That sounds contradictory, that Isaac progressed too fast, without progressing far enough, but that’s my take. John was incredibly nice and patient and perfect with Isaac for most of the book.

What really dropped the rating, though, was how John dealt with his grief. He pushed Isaac. He didn’t push past him or push him away, he just shoved at him, which was a physical attack. The first two options I might have forgiven. I was caught by surprise because I trusted John to never lay hands on Isaac. John also said truly unforgivable things to Isaac about his isolation. I was caught by surprise because I trusted John to never taunt Isaac for his disability. I do not give a flying fart if John was distraught because now I and Isaac know that in times of extreme stress, John cannot be trusted around Isaac. The only thing that keeps me from giving this a 1 star/DNF is that the shove wasn’t a hit & didn’t cause injury though the taunt tempts me from 3 to 2 stars… Isaac needs someone who is absolutely always 100% safe to be around and this scene shattered that completely. That cannot be restored. Physical action and emotional abuse is now on the table. And if it happens again? The same thing that happened this time - absolutely every single friend of John’s that Isaac contacts will say, “oh, he didn’t mean to hurt you. He loooooves you. He just has the sads”. That is the set up for a future abusive relationship. Ok the story is now rated 2 stars. While I do think there are some things people can get away with *once*, the two ways that John lashed out at Isaac were not them. Then instead of John’s friends pushing Isaac back at John, someone needed to tell John that he would be taken out in pieces if it ever happened again and it shouldn’t have happened at all. (To be fair, the friends didn’t really know but the nurse saw or at least heard.) Because it means Isaac, who needs safety, is now not safe. So the love story that started out by reaffirming how safe Isaac is around John, fails. There is a small chance that sufficient groveling would have pacified me, but there was insufficient attention paid to just how massively John screwed up. John was “the perfect boyfriend until he was the worst boyfriend” is the tell for abuse. I was completely on board before this scene. I am appalled after it.

To top it off, the authors tried to rescue the abusive ex, Rick, even sending him to help with the the climactic scene. No, nope, nohow. Rick did SERIOUS and near fatal emotional damage to John. It was not just some minor hurt feelings. It cannot be patched up with an apology and an admission about why he might have been nasty. He literally took a bullet and I really didn’t care beyond hoping it wouldn’t add to John’s emotional load. I’m not saying Rick can’t be redeemed but I’m saying it can’t be done in the 2 scenes allotted here, especially after early interactions make John feel unsafe. So now we have both our heroes, with people they trust & know well making them feel unsafe. Maybe they don’t feel as unsafe as I, as a reader, thought they were? The author clumsily tried to redeem Rick rather than validate John. The attempt at redemption within the space of this book didn’t just fail, it made the story worse. Redeem him in another book if you want, but not here.

Add to that a stalker. The stalker escalates to dangerous levels rather abruptly and I might have been ok with that except the reveal was rather unsatisfying. If you add mystery to your romance, know that there are reader expectations for a revealing the threat and this did not meet those expectations.

Steam: A few M/M sex scenes, mostly exploratory and mildly explicit. The John/Isaac scenes were incredibly sweet and appropriate and are what kept me from 1 starring the book. It was really quite nice before it went completely off the rails.

Narration: Hoo boy. I actually really like Guy Locke usually. I know people were frustrated that he pronounced “Noel” as the holiday spirit /no-ELL/ instead of /KNOW-ul/ and I could cope fine. But Yia-Yia is the traditional spelling of a way to say grandma which is /YA-ya/ not /YEE-uh-Yee-uh/. I really wish audiobook producers would confirm name pronunciations with authors before recording. I don’t put all the blame on the narrator there but it was bad. Added to that, there were at least a half dozen badly pronounced words. On the plus side, I could tell the characters apart and the voicings worked for me. Yee-uh, though? That’s messed up.

For fans of the series: There is very minor involvement with secondary characters aside from John’s BFF, unlike the previous book which was full of community building scenes. Those started to happen here but mostly at the end. I found my mind wandering midway, wondering where everyone was, since the last book was full of friends. Isaacs isolation was a factor but there was less going on here.

If, somehow, you think what John does to Isaac under emotional duress is a one time thing that he will never, ever even come close to doing again, you might like this story. Because it started well & I loved book 2 I’m kind of loathe to say “skip it” but wow am I disappointed in how things wrapped up.

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  • RJC
  • 06-06-19

Review of Perspectives , Book 3

Completely engrossing book of course. A.M. Arthur, and Guy Locke love to write about love stories and the relationship tangles we get inside our heads and hearts, definitely bringing it all to life with the excellent audible performances.

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  • Leci F
  • 27-04-19

So heartwarming!

Loved Issac and John! Great narration! Part of the Romance package...made it a bigger YAY!

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  • Ms ddne
  • 10-02-19

happy ending

I listened to the whole series of the Mean Green boys. They all have touching moments. Was happy for Boomer.

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • M. F. Hampton
  • 03-01-19

Better story

This one was a better story overall than the second one in the series. There are still some plot holes, but the epilogue didn't feel as tacked on as it did in the second. The mystery aspect of the story was handled fairly well. The narator is still a week spot for me. The mispronunciations really took me out of the story. Please, when there are foreign words or phrases in a story, learn how to pronounce them! Greek grandmothers everywhere would cringe...

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 19-11-18

Sad but sweet

This story is the best of the series . It made me teary eyed. Great ending

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Catherine
  • 23-10-18

Inane and Trite

I finally gave up on this one. The writing is sophomoric and the narration stilted.