Coming Home By K.J .


    **This is my second listen to this audiobook, I was ill this week and needed a feel-good story that didn't require much concentration and I found that Coming Home was the perfect fit for that. **

    Review of ‘Coming Home’ by KJ, audiobook narrated by Ruth Guice

    I’ve only heard good things about this sweet lesbian romance story published last year and yet I hadn’t managed to read it. As the audiobook version was released, I’m glad I’ve listened to it as I’ve not only discovered a very good author but also a new talented narrator.

    When Samantha Markson, an ordinary school teacher in Melbourne, was offered a temporary private tuition job with celebrity actress Abigail Taylor’s daughter, she couldn’t believe her luck. Abby is a gorgeous famous actress but also a caring mother and a down to earth person. There is an intense attraction between them from the start but their lives are so different that they wouldn’t have a chance at love, or would they?

    Who doesn’t love an age-gap, celebrity/ordinary person romance? If you do, this book is for you. ‘Coming Home’ is an extremely sweet lesbian love story, low in angst, with very likable characters and off-the-charts chemistry. All the characters, mains, and secondary, are very well fleshed out and their relationships are believable. I’m sometimes wary of the portrayal of children in literature, but 9-year-old Grace is very authentic in that mixture of ingenuity and maturity that children her age have.

    I like the way KJ writes, her use of metaphors is funny and refreshing, and the lightness of those words add to the overall feel-good tone of the story. The chemistry between both leads was a slow nice build-up that developed into very sensual and hot sex scenes. There’s even a place for fast-paced action in the story which I didn’t see it coming and was a clever pivotal moment in the book.

    I’ve listened to the audiobook version narrated by Ruth Guice and I was pleasantly surprised. I gather that Ms. Guice is quite new to book narration but I’ll keep an eye on her next releases. Her performance of the different emotions in the book was excellent and her different voices for the characters were spot on (with maybe the exception of the male ones). I particularly loved her rendition of Abby, her husky voice tone oozing with sensuality. So, if you are looking for a feel-good romance audiobook, I highly recommend this one. 4.5 stars.

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    Duration: 10 hrs and 11 mins Coming Home Coming Home by K.J. – 5 Stars for this pleasant, enjoyable romance.

    This is the first book I’ve read by this author and I doubt it will be my last. Samantha (Sam) Markson teaches the American equivalent of 4th grade at an exclusive private school in Melbourne, Australia. She is hired to teach and in effect be a nanny to Grace, the 9 year old daughter, of the world famous American actress, Abigail Taylor for three months. Abigail is in Melbourne to shoot a movie. Sam plans to teach Grace academics but also wants to take her in the afternoons around Melbourne to visit museums, galleries, sights etc. Because of Abigail’s long hours most days, Sam agrees to also stay overnight.

    Sam is a great character. She is tall (her exact height isn’t given but I assume almost 6 feet), thin and blonde. Her best friend, Cath describes Sam as gorgeous and Sam tells her “I’m not gorgeous, I’m interesting looking. It’s an important difference.” But I think most importantly, she is kind with a quick wit and self-effacing humor. She actively makes friends, by being considerate and observant. For instance, she quickly charms Abigail’s huge, scary American bodyguards with her humor and later by regularly bringing them Australian sweets to taste. She makes those around her smile and laugh, especially Abigail and Grace. But what also makes her a great teacher, she is able to “command” attention when she needs to.

    I was pleasantly surprised when Chapter 7 opens with Abigail’s point of view. Until then it was just Sam’s. With Abby’s POV, the mutual attraction and chemistry was off the charts. Such a contrast from a recent book I read where I felt the chemistry between the MCs was practically nil (and very disappointing). Or maybe because of the difference between the two books, made this chemistry standout? Doesn’t matter, I enjoyed it. It made me think about what is chemistry between characters? Yeah, I had to google it and asked a couple of friends. (Research is what I do). It’s one of those “You’ll know it when you see it” type of concepts. I found an excellent article Romantic Chemistry and this story ticked *all* the boxes.

    The other main characters are Grace, who bonds with Sam almost immediately. She is intelligent and yet acts her age. And Cath is fun and supportive. I was pleasantly surprised when the author wrote in a Filipino woman bodyguard. You don’t ever see that.

    I will be amiss if I don’t mention an instance in the book when I was very surprised by one character’s reaction to a situation that felt forced. It was immediately resolved which really made it stick out, but I was happy that it didn’t linger.

    Check out this book if you in the mood for a nice romance. Coming Home Breezed through this lovely read on the train to Paris last weekend. I'm a total sucker for books featuring celebrities. *swoon* Considering there are already quite a few well written reviews out there, i'll keep this short.

    The book contains some light humor and lots of fluffy feel good moments involving Grace, Abigail's far too well behaved 9 year old daughter. The banter between Sam and the security guards is a personal favorite of mine.

    It's also fairly low in angst except for one particular moment that had me gaping at my e-reader going How is this happening? That scene was crazy and took me completely by surprise.

    Though I can't label this as a classic slow burn, the book builds up great chemistry towards what will eventually become a relationship between Sam and Abigail.

    The only thing that caused some questions for me was the switch in Sam's character.

    There you have it folks, an overall 3,5* rating for this gem from down under. Coming Home I loved Coming Home when I first read it and for the life of me, I can’t understand why I gave it only 4*. The audiobook version is just as good so I’m upgrading it to the 5* I should have rated it in the first place.

    Since I already reviewed the story, I’ll just say that chapter 18 broke my heart all over again, then focus on the narration. I loved it. It’s Ruth Guice’s first audiobook, and I guess it shows a little in some of the pauses that are a tad too long, or a couple of instances where the pace slows down a bit, but it really doesn’t matter when everything else is so freaking good. Sam’s voice is awesome, just as sweet as I imagined, Grace’s sounds like the adorable kid she is and Abigail’s voice is perfectly sexy, as befits a Hollywood superstar.

    K.J . is an Australian author, and the story is set in Melbourne, so she went with an Australian voice-over artist, which pleases my ears a lot. I hope Ms Guice keeps narrating lesfic, KJ’s other books of course, but also various authors’, because she’s a real find. She brought tears to my eyes quite a few times, and managed to bring even text messages to life. That’s serious talent. Coming Home This was my first novel by this author, and WOW I just loved it. As I know this is her third book yet. And I will definitely be reading the others too.

    The story is a heartwarming romance with “Sam” Samantha Markson and “Abby” Abigail Taylor in lead roles. But there is a third really important person I can’t leave out, Abby’s nine-year-old daughter Grace. And don't stop because of that child, she's just great. It isn’t a new kind of story but even when I knew what will be the problem, it didn’t stop me from reading this sweet love story.

    When Abby, a world-famous actress from the States, comes to Melbourne for starring in her new film, she brings with her Grace. She wants for her daughter that she learns as much as she can about the country her mother originally is coming from. She hires a private teacher and therefore Sam is coming on the scene. Sam is a teacher at a private girls school when the school's director gives her the order to teach a nine-year-old girl for three months.

    I fell in love with Sam immediately, her humor, her ability to make everybody at ease and her charm let me fall for her. That she is tall, blonde and beautiful didn’t hurt either. She’s such a sweetheart. Like Sam, I also had a little crush on Abby too, the gorgeous, beautiful actress. The chemistry is great and sparks are flying very soon, but it isn’t instant love, it’s more of a slow-burn romance. Whit the sword of Damocles hanging above their heads, both women don’t want to start something with each other when after three months Abby will go back to the US. But as you know, you can’t organize everything in your life as you want, especially when it comes to love.

    The romance is sweet, but what I liked the most, was the talking and the interaction with each other. It is written very well with a great part of humor and witty comments, and with some great secondary characters as well. Sam, Abby, and Grace are very well characterized and developed and the whole story is realistic.

    I highly recommend this book to every romance lover, I’m happy I’ve read this book and have discovered a new author for me.
    My rating 4.75 stars

    ARC provided by the author and in exchange for an honest review. Coming Home

    Second read. Still loved it.


    Ordinary plus extraordinary equal an adorable and heartwarming courtship.

    Sam Markson is a coveted teacher at a posh private school in Melbourne, Australia. Abigail Taylor is a famous american movie star that needs someone to watch and provide education to her daughter while she is filming. Sam's father, who works in show business, recommends his daughter for the job.

    This book is available through Kindle Unlimited. You never know what kind of quality you are going to get. But I had seen quite a few positive reviews flowing through, so I decided to give this a shot. I am so glad that I did and I hope more people do as well.

    I loved Sam. Good at her job and bad with women. She just doesn't know how to interact with them in order to pursue any interest she has. Which is so surprising because she is charismatic, likable, and above average at making people feel comfortable. She is thoughtful and doesn't take herself too seriously. The way that she interacts with Abigail's daughter is special. That relationship was as sweet to witness as the one between Sam and Abigail.

    So many romance books tell the reader how much characters love each other. So few excel at showing you them falling. Honestly, I can't say I remember a book that did it better. This was full of moments. You could feel the adoration. Anytime Abigail observed Sam with Grace was swoon worthy.

    This was proudly Australian. I learned a bit about the crazy local ideas of interesting foods. And it was funny to read about an american accent.

    Overall, this book way exceeded my expectations. It was a charming story of falling in love despite everything that says you shouldn't.

    I recommend this to everyone. I don't think you will be disappointed. Romance, Australia, celebrity, education, relationships, volunteering, animals, dance offs, and some horrific sounding food called a chip roll. Coming Home This a very very sweet story. If you’re not into overwhelming chemistry and nice people being happy, Coming Home is probably not for you, but you’ll be missing out.

    Sam (a total sweetheart) is a Year 4 teacher in a private school in Melbourne, Australia. At the start of the new year, she’s volunteered by the school director to tutor famous Hollywood actress Abigail Taylor’s daughter Grace while the star is in town for a movie. Sam is a huge Taylor fan, and pretty soon, both Grace and Abigail (Abby) in return become huge Sam fans. That’s what being a total sweetheart gets you.

    Something is obviously happening from the beginning between Sam and Abby. I wouldn’t say it’s love at first sight, but there’s definitely interest. As much as I loved the relationship between Sam and Grace and even though I know the way to a mother’s heart is through her kids, I wish there had been more Sam / Abby interaction in the first part of the story. From the little there is, the chemistry is ginormous, but still, it feels a little too much of the first stages of falling for each other happens backstage. After a while, it gets much more balanced and all is well in the world. Until, of course, the movie is almost done and Abby and Grace prepare to go back to Los Angeles.

    I’ve been reading a lot of books with children in them, and either I’m getting old and soft or authors are getting better at writing kids. In any case, Grace completely sounds like a real child, a very charming, vivacious nine-year-old one, and she’s an important and welcome part of the story.

    Both Abby and Sam are good people and you can’t help wanting them to be happy. Sam is so talented at making everyone around her feel good and at ease that, apart from Stacey (Abby’s PR person), every character feels like someone who would make a good friend. I don’t know how much of that comes from the characters themselves or from the fact that the reader comes to know them through their interplay with Sam. She seems to make everybody happy so maybe we only see their good side, thanks to her.

    There’s a contagious energy in this book that comes from the characters’ spirited personalities but also from the structure of the story, which is told in rather short scenes. It’s both good and bad in that it gives the story an excellent pace but at the same time, I wish I had had more time to settle in some of the scenes, to immerse myself a little longer in the feelings they evoke. Because they are pretty big feelings. And that’s definitely a good thing.

    I received a copy from the author and I am voluntarily leaving a review. Coming Home This is my first read by this author and I was pleasantly surprised!
    This is such a wonderfully feel good fluffy romantic and incredibly sweet book :)
    Sam the MC was a sweetheart! From the first page of the book I had the biggest smile on my face! I laughed a lot, smiled a lot, and was very sad at a certain point. In my humble opinion, if a book manages to make you have all those feelings then no need to focus on the other minor details that could potentially bother you :)
    is it a bit cheesy? Yes. Is it a bit predictable? Yes. Do I care? NO! So I totally recommend this one if you need a fluffy read that would just make you feel so damn good :)
    4.5 rounded up to 5.. Coming Home **'If only books are as good as they are portrayed or deemed to be..'

    A somewhat funny story at times but... -- where is their chemistry? And i'm still trying to figure out why their relationship came into existence...

    p.s. -- This is my perspective! Coming Home Really solidly written and very entertaining book with great characterization but could have benefited from stronger editing and better ebook formatting. Will definitely keep an eye on KJ's new offerings in future and read her backlist.

    4.25 stars
    September 6, 2019
    Coming Home

    What would happen if your regular, ordinary, safe, everyday existence suddenly became…not any of those things? When Samantha Markson, Ordinary Person, is thrust into the life of Abigail Taylor, Not At All Ordinary Person, it proves to be an experience like she’s never had before. World famous actress Abigail Taylor is in Melbourne filming her new movie, and is accompanied by her nine year old daughter, Grace, because Abigail wants her to experience an Australian education for three months. Sam Markson is a teacher at one of the best schools in Melbourne, and is perfectly happy doing that, thank you very much, when she’s suddenly redirected from the classroom into the job as Grace’s teacher; a move so fast that even blinking would feel like slow motion. Sam has never met anyone like Abigail Taylor, and she starts to realise that her ordinary life might actually be missing something extraordinary.
    71,000 words Coming Home

    K.J . ð 1 SUMMARY