5 Stars / Contemporary / Review

Audiobook Review: Under the Radar by Melanie Moreland 🎧

One of the Donner boys. Troublemakers.
That was the reputation that followed Chase his whole life. Until he grew up and realized he could do better. Be better.
But that choice cost him. His freedom, his family, his chance at love. By making amends, he found a different path. A new set of friends. A new family.
Life was good. He thought he’d finally found everything he needed.
Then she answered his ad.
Now the roommate he needs is the woman he wants.
How long can he keep his feelings under the radar?
Or is Hannah Gallagher the one to help him break free of his past once and for all?

Title:Under the Radar
Author:Melanie Moreland
Narrator(s):Maxine Mitchell
John Lane
Series:Reynolds Restoration (Book 4)
Length / Pages:6h 57m / 328
Trope(s):Opposites Attract
Roommates to Lovers
Point of View:First Person, Past Tense, Dual Viewpoint (H & h)
Narration Type:Dual
Release Date:13 July, 2023
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Narrators add depth to an already amazing story

I always look forward to a new book from Melanie Moreland but I have to admit to having a special excitement to hear that Chase was getting his own story. Chase first appeared in the first book in this series, Revved to the Maxx, and he basically grew up through the subsequent books in the series. Starting off as a tearaway kid to scared and alone youth – if anyone was deserving of a happily ever after, it’s Chase. But don’t worry if you haven’t read the other books in the series as everything is explained and this story stands alone with its own HEA.

I didn’t have far to go before I fell fully in love with Chase. He definitely has a past but he turned himself into a good man – one that was so in need of love. In some ways, Chase was still the broken young man feeling apart from anyone around him. Gah – I was just so happy that he was getting his happily ever after. John Lane has a deliciously deep and sexy voice and he’s the perfect Chase. He adds such nuance and meaning to Chase’s words that you’re so easily sucked into the story.

I was a little worried that I wouldn’t take to Hannah, if I’m honest. She’s a cop – which means to me that she’s a strong, confident woman that I wasn’t sure I’d have much in common way. And while in those respects, that’s true, she was so much more than just that. She had layers and vulnerabilities and baggage that made her so relatable and so damn likeable. But not only that, she was the perfect partner for Chase. As always, Maxine Mitchell is perfection as a Melanie Moreland heroine. Ms Mitchell has a smokey voice that’s really easy to listen to. And like John Lane, she really acts her part, adding variance to her tone that shows she understands what she needs to convey to the listener.

The chemistry between Chase and Hannah – along side their attraction – is instantaneous. And it only gets better as a misunderstanding occurs. It’s not that I want the characters in my romance books to suffer – but I have to admit that it makes the yearning and pining all the more delicious. Which in turn makes the payoff even more explosive, and even more wonderful. It’s Melanie Moreland, so of course there’s sex (and it’s go-od) but it’s layered with feelings that make it a bit more special.

“…listening to John Lane and Maxine Mitchell bring [this book] to life is a real treat.”

There’s a little bit of drama that adds excitement and interest to the story. It was a great storyline to mix Chase and Hannah’s stories and bring them together. But I can still confidently say there is zero angst in this story. It’s just a good time all round.

If you have read the earlier Reynold’s Restoration stories, you’ll be delighted to see the return of most of the characters from the previous books – but especially Charley and Maxx. Again, no problems if you haven’t read their stories as in that case they’ll just be a colourful bunch of secondary characters. We also get a little side story of Hannah’s mum and Chase’s older friend, Dom. That was a cute little diversion – and so funny – but we didn’t really hear the end of their tale. I wonder if we’ll get more of them in a future story.

What I enjoy about listening to an audiobook is that you always hear something new that you didn’t pick up on while reading the book. Sometimes it’s in the way in which a narrator interprets the words, or just says the words. With this book I found myself laughing at different parts and feeling stronger emotions at parts with the way John Lane and Maxine Mitchell brought the words to life. And as always, I have to give massive kudos to our narrators for their portrayal of the opposite sex. Both have such a great way of speaking when doing so as their opposite that it’s so easy to forget that you’re not listening to two people talking to each other. Absolutely top notch. I hope Ms Moreland never, ever uses narrators but these two!

Melanie Moreland has this way of writing the kind of life I want to live and listening to John Lane and Maxine Mitchell bring it to life is a real treat. Her writing, along with the narration, is exemplary and within the first second of listening, I forget that I’m doing so and am already knee deep in the story and the character’s lives. This was just an adorable, delightful romance and so worthy of the full 5 stars.

* I received this book in exchange for my honest review

New York Times/USA Today bestselling author Melanie Moreland, lives a happy and content life in a quiet area of Ontario with her beloved husband of twenty-seven-plus years and their rescue cat, Amber. Nothing means more to her than her friends and family, and she cherishes every moment spent with them.

While seriously addicted to coffee, and highly challenged with all things computer-related and technical, she relishes baking, cooking, and trying new recipes for people to sample. She loves to throw dinner parties, and also enjoys traveling, here and abroad, but finds coming home is always the best part of any trip.

Melanie loves stories, especially paired with a good wine, and enjoys skydiving (free falling over a fleck of dust) extreme snowboarding (falling down stairs) and piloting her own helicopter (tripping over her own feet.) She’s learned happily ever afters, even bumpy ones, are all in how you tell the story.

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Reynolds Restoration Series:

Revved to the Maxx by Melanie Moreland
Shifting Gears Melanie Moreland Cover

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