Earlier this week, Audible Escape released their newest original starring Scott Eastwood and since then, I’ve had the chance to actually give it a listen (a read?? a read-listen??) P.S. It’s Always Been You is an Audible Original from #1 New York Times bestselling romance author Lauren Blakely.
Part 1 did as most do by introducing us to the story’s key players, setting the scene for things to come and giving the reader/listener a hook. The beginning of Hunter and Presley’s story, to be continued in Part 2&3 in the coming weeks, lets us into the very start of their romantic history. Hunter the adventurer and Presley the curator and historian spent six months together in their 20s and planned for it to last. When Hunter received the chance at a dream job, he took it. Even though it meant leaving Presley with little to no reason given. 10 years later when fate and their careers bring them together again, old wounds are opened and feelings rekindled. It’s perfect Valentine’s Day fare.
image via amazon
The story opens with Scott Eastwood’s (frankly gorgeous) voice walking us through the book’s prologue. This served as a great way to give us an insight to their history without relying on tonnes of exposition. After the prologue, it skips forward 10 years, so it’s nice to have the opener as a little glimpse into the past. Scott makes for a great narrator, his voice is sultry but also friendly. Is it possible to have a crush on a voice? Asking for a friend. His voice also works well with Andi Arndt’s – unsurprisingly since she’s the proud owner of an Audie award for romance!
The usage of both male and female voice acting for each character makes for a nice duality. It feels like getting two succinct perspectives, bringing the listener deeper into the story. If you’re somebody who isn’t used to getting your reading done aurally, this is a really great way to get started, with the dual narration making it easy to get invested – that and the slow-burn romantic tension, that is.
The one thing that I found, in listening to the story, was that some of the slightly corny lines were more pronounced. When you’re reading on a page and you come across a line that you don’t personally gel with, you can skim over it. When it’s in your ear and you aren’t expecting it, it can be a little weird. That said, it’s romance, and all is fair in love and ear!
Personal highlights ft. potential spoilers: “Mr Speed Fingers”, and “He kisses me the way I imagine he climbs a mountain”
Presley and Hunter have a few letters that have been sent back and forth between them during their relationship. Paired with the letters in Presley’s historical collection, it makes for a really interesting motif. Letters are a way of physical communication with a pen and a paper, very tangible things. What’s interesting is having these letters then rendered over the soundwaves. Talk about mixed media!
One of the main driving points of the plot is the question of how much a short relationship can really mean. Not only this, though, as the story does raise a lot of really great points about female friendships, the pressures of a career, the idea of “winning” a breakup. It’s got a lot, which is great since it’s not just love and desire, it’s so much more. So if you usually write off romance novels, give this one a chance. Plus, it does have that slow-burning sexual tension, too, if that’s more up your street.
I won’t spoil the end for you, but I will say it certainly sets up the rest of the series well. The end of Part 1 is satisfying AND exciting, meaning Part 2 really can’t come soon enough! Luckily, we don’t have long to wait, with the next installment out next week. Until then, I’ll be watching the entirety of Scott Eastwood’s filmography.
featured image via audible
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