Audiobook Review: Best New Artist by B.A. Tortuga

Kasey “Tuff” Tuffman just told Nashville to kiss his you know what. After winning Best New Artist at an award show, he knows it’s time to head back home to Texas. So after a very public meltdown, Tuff makes his way to Austin, where the Red Dirt music lives large.

Jonah Littlejohn once loved KT more than anything in the world. When KT loses it on national TV, Jonah knows he has to reach out and offer his home studio as a place to heal and make music. A bad relationship has left Jonah broken and wary of romance, but he wants to help his old lover out.

Seeing Jonah again proves to Tuff that he’s made the right decision. Now all he has to do is convince Jonah that they’re the most perfect duet there’s ever been.

Listening Length: 6 hours and 3 minutes
Narrator: Brian Hutchison

KT has been in the music game a long time. He has toured, recorded, and sold albums. But after unexpectedly winning Best New Artist at a music award he has had enough of being stepped on in this game. With dramatic flair, he makes the acceptance speech of a lifetime and storms off stage to go home where he can hide and lick his wounds.

It has been years since Jonah has seen his first love, and the man who broke his heart. Since then he has much deeper battle scars than he could ever imagine, and all he wants to do is run his small time studio and enjoy his dogs. He never expected to see KT in person again, or offer him a place to hide out, but he does it, because he is curious and compassionate to his old lover’s plight.

Second chance stories are one of my favourite. Probably because it is the story of my life, and although it can be messy working through the minefield of old pain, it is worth it when people are older, wiser, and have a chance to really think about what happened in the past.

Jonah is damaged, severely, and KT doesn’t really understand why or how. But he is respectful of Jonah’s needs and space, he is also much more patient than he was when he was younger. He has plans to wait Jonah out until he gets to the bottom of what is going on inside him.

I loved how KT managed to win back Jonah’s trust, and allowed Jonah the time to trust himself again. They had something special and even though time and life took some chunks out of them, they managed to build something familiar but new with their friendship.

Brian Hutchinson is an amazing narrator. I fell in love with his voice. I listened to this for half of a 13 hour drive from Brisbane to Sydney and the scenery outside my window was the perfect backdrop for this book and Brian’s vocals. Everyone had a distinct voice in this story, and I really appreciated that. Brian was also able to bring out the personalities of each character and show me how unique they all were. I’m sure I would have loved the print version of this story, but with the right narrator, audio is always that something extra that makes a book stand out. He was a great choice for this story.

If you love second chance romance with musicians, I highly recommend this, especially in audio. CW for off page domestic violence and emotional abuse.

A review copy was provided for an honest opinion.

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