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The Way You Smile

Narrated by: Claire Storey
Length: 8 hrs and 54 mins
Categories: Fiction, Gay & Lesbian
4 out of 5 stars (12 ratings)

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Summary

Real life doesn’t play out like a movie. Electric connections mostly mean you’ve got static in your jumper. Camila Moore knows that; she’s not daft. She has two teenage boys and bills to pay, plus the only man she’s ever been with has traded her in for a gym bunny.

Returning to work’s the answer, but when she finds herself in the wrong room and wrong place at the wrong time, the last thing she expects is to be promoted out of obscurity into the arms of Harriet Imogen Pearson, media darling, hotshot entrepreneur, and notorious lesbian playgirl.

Camila can’t believe it. She’s an ordinary woman, nothing special - in her view - so what’s Harriet’s motivation? What’s her end game?

Are Camila’s feelings just infatuation, or is it real life love?

Kiki Archer is the mistress of chick-lit romance for women of all ages and inclinations.

Praise for the book:

“The chick-lit novel to spark any woman's lesbian sexual awakening.” (Diva Magazine)

“A book that will set a new standard for your chick-lit romances.” (TLR)

"A highly commercial, pink is the new grey, contemporary romance read." (AfterEllen)

©2018 Kiki Archer (P)2020 Kiki Archer

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Loved the Book, Loved the Audiobook

One of my favourite books by Kiki Archer, narrated really well and really enjoyed, bring on the next one!

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Great narration, silly story

Loooved the narration. Story was pretty silly. Felt a bit like Belinda Blinked for baby lesbians; boring businesswoman nonsense mixed with dad-joke innuendo. Could have done without the ever-present casual homophobia too. Still hot and sweet in places though, and just try not enjoying Claire Storey's voice.

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Laugh out loud!

Good fun and lovely narration! Enjoyed the different characters and the storyline. Recommended listening but suggest you listen with headphones! :)
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who said that?

Narrator had a lovely upbeat voice but unfortunately didn't do enough in order for me to understand which character was talking when, this got in the way of fully enjoying the story. A happy ending with a 'love wins' attitude, the romance between the 2 women was exciting to follow albeit predictable.

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A Fantastic Sexy Story

I really enjoyed this and found it easy to listen to. I laughed and blushed. The relationship between the main characters is well written and the story has a good twist. Perfectly narrated. I recommend it!

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  • Jerilyn
  • 23-02-20

Beyond Brilliance!!

I was NEVER expecting this book to sweep me off my feet but it really did. There was not anything that wasn't exciting, not a single boring line. I could never say that about 90% of the books I read and that about 4 (lesbian books ofcourse) a week. The writer and the narrator are like magic together, the words and performance was crazy crazy good. There were so many laughs and a few tears and all of the side stories were even good (poor Roy, and I'm a lesbian saying that, felt bad for man) I just fell in live with this book and need it to go on and on. I am keeping my fingers crossed that I can find this narrator reading another lesbian classic and want to read something else of this writer. The narration was so good and yes she had a sexy voice! Get it, it is worth it and I can't wait to listen to it again.

1 person found this helpful

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  • Kara
  • 14-02-20

Hilariously quirky characters, great narration

“The Way You Smile” has terrifically quirky characters, frequently hilarious passages (often featuring MC Camila’s internal musings) and banter and terrific narration. I really enjoyed the audiobook.

The story is written in a slice-of-life style, focusing on events from the POV of 35yo MC Camila, but also featuring events and interactions between many other of the characters. Many of the characters and events do seem quite ordinary and realistic, but then in the next sentence you’ll find yourself wondering how the author managed to create such an unbelievable character or event. At one point, I thought of Matthew Broderick and friends in “Ferris Bueller's Day Off”; three ordinary friends and a day of hilarious adventures and misadventures with a wacky cast of side characters (the maitre d, the school principal, the parking garage attendants, etc.).

In “The Way You Smile”, the love interest MC is 32yo Harriet Imogen Pearson (initials HIP…only the beginning of how initials can be important! Name your children carefully!!!). Harriet is a wealthy public figure, and everyone gossips about her numerous “projects” with numerous women.

Terrific secondary characters (many of whom are nearly MCs, with the amount of book time they’re given), include:

• Never-married Camila’s 15yo son Michael and 14yo son Ethan
• Mick, generally uninvolved father of Michael and Ethan, who recently left Camila to move in with gym bunny Jackie
• Camila’s BF, incorrigible next door neighbor Julia, bargain hunter extraordinaire, and owner of the amazing bacon butty van
• Terry, Julie’s sometimes live-in man. He’s older and disappears frequently philandering
• Debbie, a neighbor two doors down from Camila
• Roy, Debbie’s impotent husband
• Cassie, the cute 18yo friend of Michael’s
• Bill Stevens, the now mostly legitimate father of Cassie
• Harry, the pretty teen boy
• Deana, the disapproving-of-Claudia team member for H.I.Pvention
• Brett, the disapproving-of-Claudia team member for H.I.Pvention
• Geoff, the disapproving-of-Claudia team member for H.I.Pvention
• Lydia, producer for “The Budding Businesses Show”
• oh, and recurring parts for Helen, Tina, Nigel, and the bright pink and blue haired girl who insists the style is “subtle ombre”

Now, I don’t usually include a cast list in my reviews, but I wanted to give you an idea of the number and diversity of the characters. Interactions are numerous, and frequently hilarious. I’ll leave it to someone else to create a Venn diagram!

The only other author that comes to mind that creates such interesting characters interacting in a fun story is Robin Alexander. If you like Robin, you’ll like Kiki Archer!

In many stories, inner thinking can get old, fast (Bridget Essex often overdoes it for me). In “The Way You Smile” Camila’s musings are fun. We laugh as she contemplates shaving in the shower, appropriate gym wear, the role of the on-camera “non speaking co-presenter”, the blurred years as a parent, the nature of love, deciding to become a lesbian like becoming a member of the neighborhood watch, and many many other musings.

Many conversations between Camila and Harriet are light, flirty banter. One early dinner conversation was more in-depth, and I was reminded of the movie “My Dinner With Andre”…which is a compliment.

The main plot involves trying to invent something to showcase the business model for H.I.Pventure: helping individual inventors go from idea to prototype. The storyline is well done, but the most fun with the book are the discussions with neighbors, the relationship between Camila and her sons, the confusing yet exciting interest in spending time with Harriet, and the overall bitchiness of co-workers.

The sex scenes aren’t numerous, but they are enjoyably described. Anxious to decide whether she’s in love with Harriet (it has been only a few weeks, and she was with Mick for 16 years), Camila decides that it’s ok to be unsure; not all stories need a definitive ending or conclusion…sometimes things just carry on. I found that very interesting; several of my friends seem to be carrying on without wanting, or perhaps confronting, a definitive conclusion.

After a generally upbeat, silly and fun book, the final chapter is an explosion of unexpected angst, betrayal, money-seeking friends and relatives, and homophobia. Where did that come from? Several reviewers disliked the ending, yet I found the explosion of activities and emotions worked to wrap-up all of the subplots and character interactions throughout the book.

So, as you may have guessed, I really really enjoyed “The Way You Smile”. I liked the story(ies), the characters, the narration and the cover. Well done, and highly recommended! 5*

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

My rating and my review was not in anyway affected by my having been provided a review copy.

1 person found this helpful

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  • alec
  • 28-03-20

i couldn't get into the story

The Narrator was great and that seems to be a constant with Kiki's audiobooks. I did greatly enjoy 2 of Kiki's other audiobooks Lost in the Starlight was my favorite so far and Too Late...I Love You was good. but i just wasn't into this one, i just coundn't connect with the characters or get into/invested with the story.

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  • Anja Adolfsen
  • 22-03-20

Hellacious and cute story

I loved the story (like all the others by Kiki Archer), really great narrated by Claire Storey. It was easy to listen to, she made you laugh so much and really get annoyed when you needed to. I loved the flirty chemistry between Camilla and Harriet. It was such a nice and cute story. Can’t wait the rest of Kiki’s books to become audio.

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  • vicktoria
  • 19-03-20

Hilarious! Yet disappointing

Ok this was my first listen by this author and narrator and I have to say this narrator was fabulous. The story in itself was hilarious! However the ending seemed rushed and just disappointing. I was expecting one more chapter.

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 05-03-20

cute and funny

This story was cute and funny. I cant remember the last time I laughed so much while listening to a story.


"I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review."

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  • J.K.R.
  • 23-02-20

...brought a smile to my face

The story of Camila and Harriet is sexy, romantic and endearing. It is fun and laugh out loud funny as you get to know the characters.

This audiobook is a good light-hearted listen with an engaging story and terrific narration by Claire Storey. This is my first Kiki Archer book, but it will not be my last.

I was given this free copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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  • cagles
  • 21-02-20

Superficial but easy read

No beating around the bush; this book was a begrudgingly second chance for me on this author. After seeing the author's name come up repeatedly for recommendations for the genre, I read a different book of hers before and was not impressed. At the urging of a friend, I gave it another go with this one. Truthfully, my expectations were low, to put it politely.

But I have to admit, it was better than I expected. I can't say I loved it; it had the depth of a cookie sheet but it was entertaining enough. The character development was decent. I actually could see them all as real people and cared about what happened to them. Credit is due there. It held a decent pace throughout. The romance felt a bit unrealistically fast but most do, I guess. The plot though was a rehashed romance troupe that the author admits copying in the end. Le sigh... it was completely predictable from start to cliche finish. The "conflict" can be seen from miles away. At one point I thought to myself "this character is annoying. why are they here? Oh right, to do villain-ey s**t at the climax." and I was right so that was disappointing.

If you're looking for quick, easy to read, lesbian romance and don't care to invest much emotionally, you will probably enjoy this one. It's worth reading if your expectations are conservative going in.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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  • JulieM
  • 20-02-20

Quirky lead finds new love

This was a fun, fast-moving tale about an unlikely romance between Camila and Harriet. Camila is trying to get back in the workforce after her long term boyfriend father to her two teenage sons dumps her. Harriet is a successful entrepreneur with a playgirl reputation. Sparks happen immediately when they meet.

A lot of this story feels like it’s the kind with an ordinary person swept up into a nutty situation. Camila is relentlessly pragmatic and sees beyond the bull that other people try to offer as truth. In that way, she can be a refreshing character.

The narrator was quite good, and I found her voice easy to listen to. She was also annoying when she had to be. There’s a long sequence where Camila is yelling at her best friend for help, and she keeps repeating “Julie!” over and over again. As that’s my name, I really wished she (the character) would wrap it up already. Of course, book Julie ended up with a twist ending and deserved to be yelled at a million times more.

The fun in this story is that Camila never really considered herself a lesbian or bisexual before meeting Harriet, but she commits fully to enjoying the physical benefits of it all. Like many romances, it takes a while before the couple can end well, and they have hurdles to overcome (like a case of professional sabotage). But they do get their happy, Pretty Woman-style ending.

For readers of women’s fiction (“chick lit”) and FF romances. Nice fluff to fill a few of your hours.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.