A Wall Street Journal bestseller. Zoe Brown may have been voted Most Likely to Never Leave River Bend, but the paper-thin walls and suffocating air of her family's double-wide trailer were not what she wanted for her life. Other than BFFs Melanie and Jo, the only thing that kept Zoe sane during high school was her boyfriend, Luke. She didn't just leave, she escaped-turning her back on the shame of her black-sheep siblings and imprisoned dad. Now a celebrity chef in Dallas, she can afford all the things she never could have growing up. But when she returns to rustic, ruggedly beautiful River Bend, Zoe has to face all that she abandoned-including Luke. While Luke was a refuge for Zoe in the past, he knows they inhabit totally different worlds now. Anchored by his parents and his job as a mechanic in his father's shop, Luke never felt the urge to leave River Bend-until Zoe's return. But when the two rekindle their old flame, Zoe is forced to make the hardest decision of her life: remain in River Bend and confront her past before it destroys her, or say good-bye to everyone she's ever loved.again, this time for good.
by Catherine Bybee
by Catherine Anderson
by Catherine Gilbert Murdock
by Judith Miller
by Catherine Mann
by Jane Ashford
"Celebrity chef Zoe Brown left River Bend, Oregon, 11 years ago to create a better life. Christina Panfilio's narration of Zoe's conflicting emotions over her career and her past bring out the character's vulnerability. Panfilio's appealing technique allows the listener to appreciate this character's accomplishments as a successful chef as well as her ability to rise above a difficult childhood. Panfilio amplifies the resentment Zoe's mother feels for her own stagnant life as compared to Zoe's success. As Luke, Zoe's boyfriend, Panfilio portrays a man who is determined to fight for their love, giving their relationship sparks and credibility. The descriptions of Zoe's culinary delights and the characters' reactions provide some light moments that balance the story. S.H. © AudioFile 2017, Portland, Maine"
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