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HOLD ON TO ME audiobook

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⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ I don’t know how you can take something that is already the best and make it better, but author Karen Grey unfailingly does it with each and every one of her books when you get to listen to them.” - Sally, Goodreads

Narrated by JF Harding & Mackenzie Cartwright

Length: 7 hrs and 22 mins

She’s my boss, and she’s a stone-cold fox.

Two months ago, I lost my boat, my cat, and—with my leg in a cast—my income. Until I can walk again, the only job I’m fit for is one few have survived.

See, my new boss has a reputation. She's grumpy, no-nonsense, and runs a tight ship. Keeping a tight rein on a movie budget requires nerves of steel. Especially when disaster strikes.

When she yells at me, all I hear is the passion in her voice. All I want in those moments is to kiss her until she can't think straight.

And then convince her that it's okay to fall in love with me.

Fans of 1990's movies like Swimming with Sharks and Beautiful Girls will love this slow-burn, boss-assistant, younger man older woman, entertainment biz, 1990’s office romance from USA Today bestselling author Karen Grey.

Please note: when you purchase the audiobook, you'll receive a PDF as indicated below that gives you instructions for listening to the book in the Bookfunnel app.

You will get a PDF (199KB) file

Customer Reviews

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2 months ago

Delightful RomCom

This was the second book in the "Carolina Classics" series, and it was entertaining. This story featured two tropes: grumpy/sunshine and age gap. The story was unusual in that the female protagonist was older and had more of a grumpy disposition, while the male protagonist was younger and had more of a sunny, upbeat personality. Their job roles were reversed also: Helen was the boss, while Sully was her assistant. I appreciated the humor. There were some sensual scenes depicted. Mackenzie Cartwright and J.F. Harding were the narrators, and their performances enhanced the story's entertainment. I was given a free copy of the audiobook through Spotify, from Home Cooked Books, and I have voluntarily posted this review.

Anni R.

3 months ago

Another brilliant Karen Grey, Carolina Classics addition! Great age-gap storyline

I'm a mega Karen Grey fan - and this is one of her best books so far! I highly recommend everyone picks this up (but even though it could technically be read standalone, it's better having read You Get What You Give, book 1 in the series, first, to meet the other characters and get to know the background).

We finally get Sully's story! This one picks up just a short time after book 1, after Vi and Nate's story ended. Sully has taken off on his boat and heads up towards Chesapeake Bay, when a terrible thing happens... He's back home and recovering but needs to get back working to keep his medical insurance active to keep paying his medical bills from that accident. He has a badly broken leg and can't stand up to do the mic and boom operating on movie and TV sets like he used to, but his friends are still in the industry and able to help set him up as an office assistant to a very hard to get along with line producer.

She, Helen (preferring to be called O'Neill), has difficulty holding onto assistants because she's demanding and likes everything to be done properly and in a timely manner. Her latest assistant just walked out after she messed up and got yelled at by Helen, again... and now she's in a lurch because production is about to begin on the next movie, and she needs an assistant! When she finds out they're sending her a ... young guy ... of all people, she's hesitant. Until he and his set experience, and his takes-no-crap attitude turns out to be exactly what and who she needs. And not just on set, but could it be that Sully, 10 years her junior, is a perfect match in all ways? A quick trip up to Chesapeake during a weekend off from filming, when he needs to retrieve his boat, may answer that question.

Karen always has such a beautiful way of writing, and all of her characters are just so incredible (incredibly written, because they are flawed in just the right ways), and chemistry between them, every time, flows perfectly. This particular story, I think, is the best one yet! And a great reverse age-gap storyline. I can always appreciation this trope, along with the workplace romance. And I love that all 5 of the friends are still present and show up a lot in this one... even Whitney! And the retro, back to the 90's is so much fun (this is set in the year I graduated, so I love that)!

I loved the audio version!! Karen picked the perfect narrators! Mackenzie Cartwright did a beautiful job, as she always does. She’s definitely one of my favorite female narrators and is definitely fast approaching the top of my favorite list of all narrators. She suited O’Neill so very well. JF Harding is a new to me voice. He did a great job as Sully - I don’t think anyone else could have done it better or fit the role more perfectly. Great casting, Karen!

I received an advance review and listen copy from Karen Grey and Home Cooked Books Promotions, and this is my honest feedback. Thank you, Karen!

Patty R.

3 months ago

Fantastic & nostalgic!

I am not sure where to start. With the fact that this office romance is exactly the kind of love story I enjoy? Add in the taboo of the older woman age gap? Let's go with Helen. Smart, ambitious perfectionist, handling the budget for the movie set. Very short with her responses, she comes off as aloof and at times a little nasty. That makes her hard to work for! Sully is back from his boating accident, sitting on the couch feeling sorry for himself when his friends get him up, moving and and interview for Helen's assistant. And the story begins. But what is it that intrigues me? I love Helen. I understand her need to accomplish and be seen as successful. Karen Grey makes her real, lets us into her world of fast paced craziness, but also lets us feel how her past shaped her. Sully we met previously, and what I really loved about him was his nonchalance. He could do what needs to be done, get pushed and pulled around by Helen and stand right back up. He could see her for the extraordinary person she is. This is a fabulous story with some wonderful 90's nostalgia, and characters that are absolutely amazing. A wonderful addition to the Carolina Classics.

A book that makes me feel is brought into my heart by it's narrators JF Harding and Mackenzie Cartwright are both favorites of mine and I knew I was in for a treat! Harding is a perfectly cast picking up Sully as if he has known him all his life. Easily understanding his situation, Harding pulls out his fear and frustration, and then lets us feel his change as time goes on. Mackenzie Cartwright gives a commanding performance as the strong, confident and not so confident Helen. She gives her that wealth of arrogance as she is working, but the vulnerability is always evident. Loved this team and how they gave me hours of entertainment.

Jen F.

3 months ago

Wonderfully sweet & steamy story!

Hold On to Me is my first book in the Carolina Classic series, but I plan to go back and listen to book 1 now. It’s perfectly swoony! Holly O'neill is a badass lady boss who is so busy winning at her job that she has forgotten she has needs of her own. By contrast, Sully is easy going and works enough to be able to escape on his boat and get away from it all. This is a great opposites attract love story with an aspect of the forbidden office romance with Holly being Sully’s boss. Holly has to guard her reputation and any sign of weakness or impropriety on her part because she is guilty of being a woman in the film industry. I really enjoyed Karen Gray’s explanation of the concerns and limitations experienced by women in the entertainment industry without making it in any way confrontational. It just is. Holly is the perfect representation for strong women in the film industry.

Sully is recovering from a boat accident with a broken leg, so he is unable to do his regular job. His friend and roommate suggests he take on the role of Holly’s assistant, even though he has no office experience at all. This turns out to be a perfect fit. His temperament, knowledge of the industry, general competence, and wonderful memory make him the perfect assistant she never knew could exist and they build an excellent working relationship. I just love his attitude and his ability to calm her down without pushing or calling to question how she works. He isn’t challenging her authority or process. When they go on a trip together under close quarters the inevitable attraction blooms into romance and I loved it!

Mackenzie Cartwright and JF Harding are absolute perfection for these characters and I really enjoyed the performances. I am narrator motivated and would listen to this book based on that alone, without even reading the blurb, but together they really bring this wonderfully sweet & steamy story to life. I really enjoyed it!

Joann G.

3 months ago

I loved Sully and Helen’s story!!

It’s time to bring out your boom boxes and mix cds were going back to the 90s for Sully and Helen’s story in this retro romantic comedy!

After a boating accident that left his leg messed up Sully is recovering at his friend Dani's place back in Wallington NC. Only it’s more then Just his leg causing a problem. Sully the normally easy going Zen master is drowning in depression. He can’t surf, he isn’t working and the boat that he put blood sweat and tears into restoring is now wrecked, and he's unsure if his trusted furry friend survived the accident. With his money dwindling away and medical bills piling up he accepts a interview his friend Dani sets up with Helen O’Neill a unit producer with a reputation of being kind of sassy. Helen cares little about her reputation of being a hard to work with because at the end of the day she gets the job done and done well. Hiring Sully is a risk but one that could pay off in more ways then one..

Karen really sets the tone in her books, I absolutely love the Carolina Classics series so far. Reading this is like immersing yourself in your favorite dramedy. All your favorite characters and the couple you are currently shipping front and center in the latest installment. Sully and Helen are complete opposites in most every way. He's so laid back his life goals has never been to conquer in his career, his dreams are to sail and surf and enjoy life he wants to live to live not live to work. Whereas Helen is a career oriented person. She is a woman in a man’s world and works to prove herself not to others but to herself. There are times you can’t see how they could possibly work out but they do. It’s one of the many things I love about this couple. They don’t really want to change one another to fit themselves they accept one another and find a balance. They build from a great working relationship to a physical relationship then to an actual relationship. This is a well rounded fun read with all the charm and nostalgia we come to know and love from Karen’s stories. I don’t know who is up next in the series but I cannot wait for more!

I had read the book prior to the audio version and After getting to know the characters through reading the book I can honestly say JF Harding and Mackenzie Cartwright were the perfect choices to bring life to Sully and Helen through their performances in the audiobook. They brought a new level of energy and charm to an already wonderful story and were just a delight to listen to. I’d definitely recommend this book to any romance fan and I cannot wait to listen to it again !