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5 Stars / Contemporary / New Adult / Review / Young Adult

Audiobook Review: The Art of Falling for You by Maya Hughes 🎧

If looks could kill, I’d be a charred pile of ash on the sidewalk.

I need to know why she hates me.

Bay Bishop aka The New Girl is my new neighbor. In her glasses and stage crew black clothes she has a knack for fading into the background.

She’s probably the only one who rolls her eyes when I walk past instead of cheering on my last touchdown play. But before I can shove her into the recesses of my mind filed under “Not my problem” she lands herself smack dab in the middle of my dreams.

I catch her singing with a voice unlike any I’ve heard before that taps into feelings I shouldn’t have for the girl who avoids me at all costs.

With three months until graduation, the final play is on. Only it’s not for more points. It’s for Bay.

Unlike my success on the field, this win is anything but assured. But I can’t stop myself from taking the risk.

There’s no flashing scoreboard.
There’s no cheering crowd.
There’s only her and me.

The countdown clock is ticking. The only thing scarier about finding my first love will be losing her.

Title:The Art of Falling for You
Author:Maya Hughes
Narrator(s):Emma Wilder
Tim Paige
Series:Falling Trilogy (Book 1)
Pages / Length:321 / 9 hours 7 minutes
Genre(s):Contemporary
New Adult
Young Adult
Trope(s):Enemies to Lovers
Friends to Lovers
Neighbours to Lovers
Sports Romance (American Football)
Point of View:First person, past tense, dual viewpoints (H & h)
Narration Type:Dual
Location:US
HEA:❌ (CLIFFHANGER ENDING)
Release Date:17th September, 2021
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Takes Dare and Bay to a new level

I read and thoroughly enjoyed this book earlier in the year so when it become available in audio I fair jumped at the chance to relive this first part of Dare and Bay’s trilogy. Yes – if you’re new to these stories, this particular book ends in a cliffhanger with Dare and Bay’s story continuing in The Sin of Kissing You and then The Hate of Loving You.

Bay is the girl that most of us probably were in high school. She’s not part of the cool group but not edgy enough to fit into one of the other groups either. She just does her own thing, tries to keep her nose clean and mostly fades into the background. I liked her immensely when reading and I felt Emma Wilder did a grand job as bringing her to life and making me like her in audio, too. Emma’s voice is slightly raspy and she definitely embodied Bay’s songstress vibe.

Tim Paige made for an exceptional Dare. He had a deep enough voice to come over as manly yet still believable as an 18 year old. He brought emotion to the story and I believed ever word he said. Dare is an angry man but with completely good reason. And that reason was heartbreaking. A strong young man who is actually hiding a tortured and damaged soul – so someone I want to wrap up in a huge hug – is my hero catnip. The fact that he could do a bad thing and I still loved him showed me how much I adored the guy.

What I enjoy about listening to audio – especially after having read the book – is that it brings up so many different nuances and really lets you live in the story. I feel like I know Dare and Bay so much better and feel really invested in their love.

“…Maya Hughes isn’t just a great author – she’s one of the best.”

While excellent individually, together is where Bay, Dare and the story as a whole, shines. They both come out of their shells both as friends and then as lovers and are really their authentic selves with each other. If there’s one thing I love, it’s a love story where the couple can finally be themselves, and find that another person accepts and loves them just as they are. But there’s also a lot of teasing and banter between our couple – and that definitely made me smile.

This book tells Dare and Bay’s story starting from several months before graduation in their senior year of high school. So I suppose that technically makes this a young adult book, even though we know this is happening prior to “present day”. There is kissing and some sex in the book but it all fits in with the story and not gratuitous. Perfect.

Having read the book, I obviously now know what – or who – the surprise is at the end of the story. It was therefore fun to listen for things in the audio that might have clued me in… yet I still took pleasure when the reveal came. If

Yes, this is a cliffhanger but if you’re a fan of Maya Hughes, or just want an absorbing and emotional romance to really get stuck into, I would highly recommend this book to you. The audio is well produced, well-read and is a great way to introduce – or reintroduce – yourself to Dare and Bay. 5 stars.

Maya Hughes can often be found sneaking in another chapter while hiding in the bathroom from her kids! 🙂 I’m a romance writer who loves taking inspiration from everyday life, namely my husband and biggest fan. Inspiration also strikes when I hear a song, meet someone new or daydream while at soccer practice.

I’m the mom of three little ones, the wife to an amazing husband and also work full time. Some of my favorite things are cinnamon rolls, white wine, laughing until I can’t breathe and traveling with my family.

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