Narrator: Billlie Fulford-Brown
Series: Cherry Blossom Stories #1
Published by Self Published / Indie on 01 April 2015
Length: 5 hrs 59 mins
Genres: Young Adult
Source: Author, Submitted
Haruka and Takashi are devoted to shopping and going out in Tokyo. She loves her Louis Vuitton handbags, Hermès scarves, and Louboutin shoes. He enjoys eating out and looking through the department stores in Ginza and Shibuya. Together they make a cute couple, but love is never easy.
Takashi's world starts to turn upside down when he realizes Haruka has started seeing Jun, her wealthy ex-boyfriend from Kyoto. When Haruka travels to Kyoto to meet up with Jun and his mother, a series of earthquakes hit Tokyo, and Takashi is injured. Haruka is unable to contact him, and it looks like she'll never see Takashi again - the boy who truly loves her.
Filled with cultural significance, this story will appeal to listeners who have an interest in Japan and the mind-set of the Japanese people.
©2012 Renae Lucas-Hall (P)2015 Renae Lucas-Hall
ABR received this audiobook for free from the Author, Submitted in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect our opinion of the audiobook or the content of our review.Buy from Audible Buy from Amazon.com Audio SampleAdd to Goodreads
This is probably one of those books where I was just the wrong audience. I simply do not care what other people wear or possess, and I have no interest in fashion and designers. So you can hopefully see my predicament when I came across all these characters who were totally obsessed by shopping, clothing, brands and designers, bags, cars, wealth, possessions and outer appearance. I just could not warm up to them at all. The main character’s father somewhere along the lines mentions: “Marry for love but love where the money is.” Well, that about sums up the characters and the story.
There’s Takashi, a hard working university student from a modest background, who fancies Haruka, who used to be a fellow student of his, but dropped out to help look after her sick father. Still, the two keep meeting regularly in Tokyo for coffee. But then Takashi finds out that Haruka is also in contact with Jun, who is very wealthy. Who will Haruka marry in the end?
Love triangle? Not so much. Emotional? Nope. Romance or love? Well, the love of all things materialistic. Lots and lots of talk about who bought what and who is driving a BMW or a Mercedes. Classified as a young adult book and a coming-of-age story, there was also some weird obsession with acne, which made me cringe. The dialogue felt terribly stilted. Do young Japanese people really talk like this to one another?
On the positive side, it was a relatively short listen at just under 6 hours. Probably a nice listen if you are keen on the geography of Japan and some Japanese culture. Sorry, but that’s all I’ve got.
The narration by Billlie Fulford-Brown was not much better either. It was hard to tell the difference between female and male characters. The narrator sounded robotic and dull. It felt like listening to somebody reading off a paper rather than listening to a performance of an audiobook.
There were no issues with the quality of the production.
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