To Whisper Her Name Audible Audiobook – Unabridged
From best-selling author Tamera Alexander comes an exquisite historical novel set against the real history of Belle Meade Plantation in Nashville, Tennessee, that explores the struggles of real people of the post-war South and the journeys of a man and a woman scarred by betrayal.
Olivia Aberdeen, destitute widow of a man shot as a traitor to the South, is shunned by proper society and gratefully accepts an invitation from Elizabeth Harding, mistress of Belle Meade Plantation. Expecting to be the Hardings’ head housekeeper, Olivia is disillusioned when she learns the real reason Elizabeth’s husband, Confederate General William Giles Harding, agreed to her coming. Not finding the safe haven she expects, Olivia is caught off guard by her feelings for Ridley Adam Cooper, a man who seems anything but a Southern gentleman.
Branded a traitor by some, Ridley Cooper, a Southern son who chose to fight for the Union, is a man desperate to end the war still raging inside him. Determined to learn “the gift” that Belle Meade's head horse trainer and former slave, Bob Green, possesses, Ridley harbors secrets that threaten both their lives.
As Ridley seeks to make peace within himself for fighting against the South he loved, Olivia is determined to never be betrayed again.
Praise for Tamera Alexander:
“To Whisper Her Name has everything a fine historical novel needs: characters we truly care about, struggles that really matter, splashes of humor to engage us, and period details that bring the past to vibrant life. Ridley and Olivia both arrive with heartaches and disappointments tucked in their traveling bags. Watching them unpack those memories and make room for the Lord’s cleansing touch is pure reading pleasure.” (Liz Curtis Higgs, New York Times best-selling author)
“Rich in history, romance, and human drama, To Whisper Her Name is a book to be savored, like a sumptuous Southern banquet. Tamera Alexander’s skills as a master storyteller have never been more evident.” (Robin Lee Hatcher, best-selling author of Cross My Heart and Who I Am with You)
“To Whisper Her Name will grab you and not let go. It’s a beautiful, powerful story with unforgettable characters who face the unthinkable with honor while a captivating romance blooms where seeds should never have been scattered.” (Cindy Woodsmall, New York Times and CBA best-selling author)
This inspirational historical romance can be listened to as a stand-alone novel or enjoyed as the first audiobook in Tamera Alexander’s Belle Meade series.
Audiobook length: approximately 125K words. Includes discussion questions for book clubs and a note from the author.
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|Listening Length||17 hours and 8 minutes|
|Audible.com Release Date||November 30, 2012|
|Best Sellers Rank|| #44,490 in Audible Books & Originals (See Top 100 in Audible Books & Originals) |
#126 in Clean & Wholesome Romance (Audible Books & Originals)
#134 in Christian Historical Fiction (Audible Books & Originals)
#227 in Christian Romance (Audible Books & Originals)
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Top reviews from the United States
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Tensions are high in this novel, especially between the hero and heroine, but also with the Ku Klux Klan spreading terror. The sizzling chemistry was tastefully written. I always enjoy watching characters fall in love and overcome obstacles. In Christian fiction, I savor how God is intertwined in the story and how the characters grow in their faith. I appreciate how Alexander wove this naturally throughout the story.
Another touching part of this love story is the love and respect that Maggie and Cullen each felt for Maggie’s father. Cullen’s determination to live up to his promises is an endearing trait.
I really enjoyed this novel.
Olivia and Ridley caught and kept my attention immediately, because they are well-rounded characters. She's a mix of Southern propriety and independence, trepidation and determination. He's a Southern son who fought for the Union in order to stand against slavery. Still dealing with the trauma of being a prisoner at Andersonville, he can nevertheless be stubborn, high-handed, and anything but a victim. When Olivia and Ridley are constantly thrown together, sparks fly like you wouldn't believe. Eventually though, they settle into a warm relationship full of banter that's fun to watch. You know each one is what the other needs, so you root tirelessly for them to be together, despite conventions of the time period dictating Olivia must marry for convenience and money.
Olivia and Ridley's relationship makes for a multifaceted plot full of the little incidents and scenes that make up the lives of real people. When Olivia's feet get horribly blistered from walking around Belle Meade in unsuitable shoes, Ridley washes them and gets her to a healer. When Ridley finally tells Olivia his secrets, she's understandably frustrated and confused, but eventually sets aside her past prejudices to accept who he is and what he stands for. The two cement their relationship in unique ways, such as through a dance at a servants' party and systematic desensitization of Olivia's equine phobia.
As noted, the secondary characters and plots are great as well. Olivia's position as teacher in a freedmen's school was one of my favorites; I wanted to see more of that. I also would've liked to see a little more about how Ridley came to fight for the Union, how he coped at Andersonville, and how he dealt with post-traumatic stress. Again, I love that he was never a victim, but I feel slight shading in these areas would have given him a softer side.
The book seems too long and drawn out in places, and at times, it feels the characters are doing too much and experiencing too many stakes. For instance, even though I loved Olivia's determination to teach, I wondered if she needed to deal with it on top of overcoming what Charles put her through. However, I can safely recommend this book, especially if you like a sweeping Civil War novel or are partial to horse stories.
Top reviews from other countries
All the way through the tale you are expecting Ridley's secret to come out and are fearful of the consequences. It's heart-breaking that such a war ever happened but that it turned brother against brother , father against son was awful. Ridley had and still has his reasons for his actions and they are commendable for without men like him those dark attitudes would still be prevalent. To some he would be a traitor to more he would be a hero. The author really makes you feel each characters turmoil and you can't help but sympathise and empathise with their Dilemmas, even The General gains your respect. Uncle Bob is the father figure you have ever dreamed of having with his gentle and encouraging ways. Thoroughly entertaining though the underlying serious subject of slavery war and destruction is not lost either