Title: Nothing Serious
Author: Jay Northcote Narrator: Michael Pauley
Publisher: Dreamspinner Press
Release Date: April 4, 2019
Genre(s): Contemporary Romance
Length: 4 hours and 3 mins
Reviewed by: Lily G. Blunt
Heat Level: 4 flames out of 5
Rating: 4 stars out of 5
What happens when “nothing serious” turns into something more complicated?
Mark O’Brien is finally being honest with himself. His relationship with Rachel is over, and he’s moving out of the home they’ve shared for six years. They get along, but he can’t fix a relationship when the person he’s with is the wrong gender.
Jamie Robertson, one of the removal men, is huge and ridiculously gorgeous, and Mark is smitten at first sight. When a cardboard box splits, revealing items of a personal nature that Mark never wanted anybody to see, he’s mortified. But it sparks the start of a beautiful friendship with benefits.
As Jamie initiates Mark into the joys of gay sex, the two men get increasingly close and “nothing serious” turns into something rather important to both of them. But communication isn’t their strong point. Will either man ever find the courage to be honest about his feelings?
Nothing Serious is an early Jay Northcote novella. I read it a few years ago and enjoyed it. I was interested to hear how Michael Pauley narrated a story set in the UK.
This sweet tale is easy to follow and an entertaining listen. There’s no real angst or heavy drama. Mark’s ex-girlfriend is supportive, as is the hunky Jamie, who selflessly offers himself up for Mark to explore his ‘newfound’ sexuality. They both declare the experiment would be ‘nothing serious’ and the problem only arises when it does become more serious for both guys. Neither of them is willing to express their developing feelings in case they run the risk of scaring the other off.
I liked the characters—both the main ones and the secondary ones, the UK setting, the low-angst and the fact that this is a sweet romance with two guys falling in love and no major drama. The sizzling bedroom scenes sprinkled throughout are an additional bonus. Mark and Jamie are considerate, nice guys. Both are mature and sensible. They have some good times together.
I’m from the UK, but I’m very picky when it comes to choosing audiobooks set there. Or rather, the narrators who have been chosen to perform the stories. Many come across as too old or ‘BBC’ for the story and if narrated by a US narrator, the accents can be either cockney or posh. I often can’t get past the sample on Audible, let alone the whole story.
I was eager to hear how Michael narrated this story. If I didn’t know it was Michael, I would never have guessed it was him. We don’t get his usual ‘rasping/growly’ voice, which I think worked for this story and the characters. He did a very good job at creating a neutral British accent. It occasionally has an Irish lilt, but then one of the characters has Irish blood. Michael made the story entertaining and easy to listen to. Well done!