Audiobook Review: VIRGIN RIVER by Robyn Carr

Format: Audio; 11 CDs (12 hr, 30 min)
Narrator: Therese Plummer
Series: Virgin River, #1
Publisher: Mira Books
Released: April 1, 2007
Source: Borrowed from the library
Rating: ★★★★★

Wanted: Midwife/nurse practitioner in Virgin River, population six hundred. Make a difference against the backdrop of towering California redwoods and crystal-clear rivers. Rent-free cabin included.

When the recently widowed Melinda Monroe sees this ad she quickly decides that the remote mountain town of Virgin River might be the perfect place to escape her heartache, and to reenergize the nursing career she loves. But her high hopes are dashed within an hour of arriving: the cabin is a dump, the roads are treacherous and the local doctor wants nothing to do with her. Realizing she’s made a huge mistake, Mel decides to leave town the following morning.

But a tiny baby, abandoned on a front porch, changes her plans…and a former marine cements them into place. Melinda Monroe may have come to Virgin River looking for escape, but instead she finds her home.

I finally took the plunge into the world of audiobooks! This was my first, and it was very enjoyable – both the story and narration. I’ve heard so many wonderful things about the Virgin River series. Aren’t there 20 books now? I decided to start from the beginning.

VIRGIN RIVER is a bittersweet story about dealing with the pain of loss and learning to love again. The whole cast of characters was well-drawn and easy to get to know, and their home was amazing! Virgin River is a remote town of a few small buildings surrounded by giant redwoods, winding mountain roads, and the pristine river filled with fish.

It was all those wonderful things that drew grieving widow Melinda (Mel) Monroe to Virgin River. It seemed like the perfect escape, but once she got there, Mel realized that small town life wasn’t as simple and trouble-free as she thought. Mel was a likable character, hurting but strong, and devoted to her career as a nurse practitioner and midwife.

For me the highlight of VIRGIN RIVER was Jack Sheridan. (He wins best book boyfriend of the year hands down!) He’s an ex-marine with alpha-male tendencies, very protective of the people he loves. He’s also about the kindest, most generous man you could meet. He was so patient and understanding with Melinda as she came to terms with her husband’s death.

I really enjoyed Therese Plummer’s narration of this book. Because this was my first audiobook, it took me a while to get used to the different character voices, especially the male characters. Once I got into the grove of things, I appreciated the emotions Ms. Plummer added to the characters’ voices.

I would highly recommend VIRGIN RIVER to lovers of contemporary romance! I’m starting the second book, SHELTER MOUNTAIN, today.