Author: Alexis Hall
Narrator: Nicholas Boulton
Cover Artist: Simoné
Story Rating: 5.00 of 5 Stars
Narration Rating: 5.00 of 5 Stars
Overall Rating: 5.00 of 5 Stars
Release Date: 01/22/2016
Length: 06 hours 42 minutes
Genre: Contemporary, M/M Romance
The universe is a glitterball I hold in the palm of my hand.
Once the golden boy of the English literary scene, now a clinically depressed writer of pulp crime fiction, Ash Winters has given up on love, hope, happiness, and—most of all—himself. He lives his life between the cycles of his illness, haunted by the ghosts of other people’s expectations.
Then a chance encounter at a stag party throws him into the arms of Essex boy Darian Taylor, an aspiring model who lives in a world of hair gel, fake tans, and fashion shows. By his own admission, Darian isn’t the crispest lettuce in the fridge, but he cooks a mean cottage pie and makes Ash laugh, reminding him of what it’s like to step beyond the boundaries of anxiety.
But Ash has been living in his own shadow for so long that he can’t see past the glitter to the light. Can a man who doesn’t trust himself ever trust in happiness? And how can a man who doesn’t believe in happiness ever fight for his own?
Um, it’s kinda incredibly hard for me to write a review for GLITTERLAND because it’s my favourite romance, by my favourite author, and I basically feel that no matter what I’m gonna write it will just never be able to give this book justice, nor be able to mirror my love for it. Because thinking of GLITTERLAND fills me with so much love and thoughts all at once, I don’t know how to get them out.
The writing… sigh… so, so beautiful. I could have quoted the whole book, every page. I absolutely adore everything about Alexis’s writing. The world and characters he creates, the first person POV, the Essex dialect, everything.
Is this enough? You believe me, right? And just go for it? No?
Okay, I’ll try to give you some more…
Alexis writes about real people with real problems, and that makes them very relatable. We’re reading the story through Ash’s point of view. He’s a bipolar depressive and he has withdrawn so much into himself, out of fear of someone pitying him and out of fear of the obligations that come with social interactions.
You can maybe imagine how hard it is for him to fall in love. He can’t even recognise it, and he doesn’t welcome it, either, especially since the man he desires, Darian, is everything that he used to find ridiculous. Darian is a glitter pirate, an aspiring model from Essex, who might not be sophisticated but is not at all naive or simple like everyone may assume.
Alexis shows us how this unlikely pair has the right to try, how through ups and downs they come to a place where love is possible.
Despite the heavy topic of depression and anxiety, that really dominates Ash’s life, there is a lot of humour in GLITTERLAND and there are many light and lovely and very sexy scenes as well.
I really appreciate that Alexis does not create artificial issues to make the story even more angsty and supposedly entertaining. He also does not conjure a magical happy ending, but one that is even better, a realistic one. One that makes me even happier because I can really believe in it and one that gives me hope.
Oh wow, I did get something unto the page at least 😉
It’s the best romantic love story I’ve ever read. Please give this a try.
I had already read GLITTERLAND three times over the last year and was so very excited when Alexis announced it was going to be available in audio soon. Moreover, he was so very pleased about Nicholas Boulton (who also is the narrator of some guy in Dragon Age something, which is like super important 😉 ) being the narrator and basically so very excited about it himself. Since I’m a member in Alexis’s and Santino Hassell’s Facebook Group, I had the opportunity to listen to a very first snippet early on and fell in love with the narration at once.
Nicholas Boulton has a beautiful voice and he uses it differently for all of the characters, even Ash’s narration sounds a bit different to when he’s actually talking.
Talking of Ash, I think it’s amazing how Nicholas Boulton makes him appear so human and even vulnerable in parts. I think that this is in this particular case crucial because I think a less great narration would maybe have made it hard to like him.
Darian’s voice and his Essex accent are wonderful. He has a very loving voice and I think it fits him very well.
I am very pleased with the narration for my favourite romance and I already know I will listen to it many more times, to be precise, I’ve already started again…
This review is based on a copy purchased by the reviewer independent of any review copies offered.
I have a number of paperbacks, most of which are signed, to giveaway. Over the between now (11 Mar 2017) and 31 Mar 2017, every comment on the blog (this post and all other new posts), will be entered to win 1 of these paperbacks. There are also some misc swag items, so there will be a few packs of these to give away as well.
Thank you so much for your support over the last 4 years. Prism will be closing its doors on 1 April 2017. All content will remain available, but no new content will appear after 31 Mar 2017. As such all request forms have been turned off. Again Thank you,
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