Old Hurts and New Beginnings (An audio review)
Although Callie is well into adulthood, she’s still haunted by the tormenting and bullying she endured first as a child, and then young woman growing up in Colton, Mississippi. Although numerous kids in the town harassed her, Dax Ellis was her true tormentor. Just hearing about the stories horrified me and, at times, made me want to stop the audio. Gut-churning stuff. I’d been bullied growing up, but nothing like what Callie endured. And all because of her mixed-race heritage.
So when Dax Ellis returns to town, Callie plans to give him a wide berth.
Dax has changed. Years away from Colton, serving in the army, has revealed to him how truly soul-crushing his behavior must have been to Callie. He’s learned empathy from a beloved uncle, and is ready to confront those in his family who still believe themselves better than everyone else. His mother might not be mayor of Colton, but she has her finger in every pie, and those who don’t kowtow to her often find themselves on the losing end of whatever battle she starts.
Callie has suffered under the wrath of Dax’s mother, but her firm belief in the town of Colton has kept her going. Now Dax is back, and she has to decide if his contrition is sincere. And if she can ever trust him again.
Not going to lie, there were parts of this audio that were hard to listen to. But I’m so glad I forged ahead and finished it. I love Ms. West’s storytelling abilities. I was spellbound, and wanting things to end well for Callie and Dax. There were also several secondary characters I fell in love with, including Callie’s best friend. Glad to see this is only book one in the series and there are more to come.
Finally I’ll mention Zuzu Robinson. I’m from Canada, so have minimal exposure to the southern United States, but the accent is unmistakable. Ms. Robinson did a great job and her work was a pleasure to listen to. Can’t wait for the next book.
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