Listening Length: 6 hours and 26 minutes
Reformed gangster Luis falls hard for his boss. When friendship turns to love, it’s up to Paolo to convince him second chances are worth the pain.
Luis Pope is back on the street after a six year stretch in prison, but life on the outside seems just out of reach, especially when the whole neighborhood knows his face for all the wrong reasons.
Paolo’s temper makes it hard to keep staff, and he knows Luis’s rep all too well. But his nonno believes in redemption, and Luis isn’t the tough guy Paolo remembers. Prison has left its mark, inside and out, and all the kindness in the world can’t fix the three inch scar on Luis’s skull.
And it can’t keep ghosts locked up. Luis’s the best worker Paolo’s ever had, and Luis’s happier than he’s ever been. But his old life doesn’t want to stay in the past. Trouble comes to call, and when it makes him an offer he can’t refuse, keeping Paolo safe hurts the most.
Redemption is an angsty, standalone MM romance novel, with second chances, found family, friends-to-lovers, and buckets of hurt/comfort themed loveliness.
Let's play a little game of woulda', shoulda' and yet somehow I didn't...
Ok, right off the bat here I'm going to say I really and truly think this one's on me. I know we've all said this from time and time and sometimes we truly mean it while other times I think it's more of a polite way to say this one sucked...well, this time I'm saying it and truly and sincerely meaning it when I say "it's not the book, it's me."
Don't get me wrong. I liked it. The story was good and Dan Calley's a narrator that I've really come to enjoy listening to...yet, for some reason I just didn't fall in love with this story the way I have with other stories by this author.
I actually finished listening to this audio book a few days ago and I've been struggling with what to say because for me writing a review about why I maybe didn't enjoy a book or audio book as the case may be and not being able to clearly define why things went a little off the rails for me with no clearly definable reasons isn't something I enjoy doing and yet here I am about to give it a go.
'Redemption' is based on one of my favorite tropes...second chance. I love...seriously LOVE a good second chance story and that's what this is...
Luis is fresh out of prison having served his time all he wants it to find a job and lead a quiet life away from his past.
Paolo's trying to run the family diner on his own as he maintains the stereotype about Italian tempers by constantly running off his employees. He knows who Luis is and he's determined not to see past what the surface...but, his grandfather won't let him off that easily and he makes Paolo look past the circumstances to see the man.
So let me just say at this point I loved all of this overall the premise of this story was the jam for my toast and as always Ms Leigh did an impeccable job of telling this story and ironically I really liked Luis and it took a little more time for me to come to like Paolo but it happened so as I said I'm just not sure why this all ended up being a case of "it was alright as opposed to the usual this was 'fan-freakin'-tastic".
In the scheme of things the only 'niggle' I had and it was a really small one was that I found the first part of the story to be a little on the slow side, which isn't something that normally takes away much from a story in my eyes, especially when it's giving the background for the characters and setting up the rest of the story.
Truthfully...would I recommend this one? yes I would especially to anyone who enjoys a second chance story.
Will I be doing a repeat on this one? guess what the answer to this is also yes because I really think another time and maybe a different mindset or whatever it was that kept me from getting into this story the way I usually do and I think I'm going to truly love it.
While I've only given this one 3 stars it's a very, very subjective 3 stars based entirely on how I felt at the end of things. But it's also not representative of how I feel about this authors works as far as I'm concerned Ms Leigh is absolutely a 5 star author worth reading every time.
An audio book of "Redemption" was graciously provided by the author in exchange for an honest review.
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