The Pact by Karina Halle
Narrated by: Lydia Dornet and Shaun Grindell
Release Date: June 23, 2015
Genre: Adult, Contemporary Romance
Rating: 4 Bookworms
Linden McGregor is tall, rugged, and gunslinger handsome-a helicopter pilot with a Scottish brogue and charm to spare. He's also on of Stephanie Robson's best friends and has fit into that box for as long as she's known him. Beautiful, funny, and an ambitious businesswoman, Stephanie Robson is one of Linden McGregor's best friends and has fit into that box for as long as he's known her. But some relationships can't be boxed, can't be classified, can't be tamed. Back in their mid-twenties and tired of the competitive hit-or-miss dating scene of San Francisco, Steph and Linden made a pact to marry each other if neither one of them are in a serious relationship by the time they hit thirty. It sounded like fun and games at the time but as the years to thirty tick past and lovers come and go out of their lives, the pact becomes larger than life. Sex is inevitable. Friendships are tested. Hearts are on the line. The pact is about to change everything.
Both Lexxie and I had The Pact in audio and so we decided to do an audiobook buddy 'listen'. ;) Here's our book chat:
Lexxie: Both Kayla and James really, really piss me off!!! I'm almost at the end of The Pact.
Brandee: Me too! I almost couldn't stand James.
L: How can Steph be happy for James? I would kick him in the nuts if I were her. (They're about to go to NY after Linden's helicopter accident)
B: I completely agree. He was a total schmuck. So self-centered. I'd kick him in the nuts twice! :)
I've finished listening now :) And I did enjoy the story, even if I found it a bit frustrating that Linden and Steph has to meet so many roadblocks.
B: Yeah, I got to that point as well. I wasn't happy that Linden gave her up for James. I didn't feel like that was a best friend move - at least on James' part. In a way I thought the roadblocks were contrived to keep the story going. But I still loved it. :)
L: And I found the Scottish accent to sound a bit fake in this one...
B: I was wondering what you thought about the accent. There were times when I thought it was real because his American accent sounded funny but I liked the female narrator's Scottish accent better. So you don't think he's (the narrator) a Scot?
L: No definitely not a Scot! In the beginning, it really peeved me, and almost made me stop listening. Thank goodness Linden had much less chapters than Steph! And I thought the female narrator was better, too.
B: Okay, well I'm glad I'm not the only one who didn't necessarily like the male narrator. I got used to it though.
L: Oh me too! By the end I was OK with him...but just wait until you listen to The Offer.
B: I'm looking forward to it.
L: James acted like a total douche! Especially if he had understood from the beginning that Linden and Steph were seeing each other! He should have realised how happy they both were.
B: Yeah, I don't know that I'd have remained friends with James but we weren't privy to his conversation with Linden when he apologized. So we don't know what went down there but Steph - I guess she was okay since things worked out in the end.
L: Yeah, but no matter that James said, he was really only thinking of himself - accusing Linden of not understanding him (James) and all the hardships of his life... Whereas he was not at all trying to see anything at all from Linden's POV.
B: I agree. A narcissist.
We are SO good at this!
I found Kayla to be a hypocrite, too! Even if James later said that Kayla had told him about Linden and Steph when she was drunk...
B: Yeah, I'm interested to read Kayla's story to see if she's redeemed at all because yeah, she was a hypocrite. I almost felt like she was jealous.
L: Kayla's story will be the next one I listen to, and I can't wait either. And I liked Kayla better in The Offer, too.
She may have been jealous, especially because Linden and Steph were always close - friends, but always with the kind of possibility for something more - especially for those looking in from the outside of their relationship.
B: That's how I felt about Kayla. She didn't want to give Linden the benefit of the doubt with Steph since *she* didn't get him to stick around. I'm glad I'll like her better in The Offer.
L: So you do know you'll like her better, eh? ;)
B: Well, I'll like her better if you did ;)
Did you feel like all their baggage was appropriately resolved?
L: Linden and Steph? Or everybody?
B: Linden and Steph
L: I think Linden and Steph came to just accept that being best friends AND lovers was possibly the greatest thing ever for them.
And I'm not sure if anyone can really resolve all their baggage...but if most has been dealt with and they are trying to move forward in a positive way, things can definitely work out.
B: I agree and I was thrilled that they realized best friends make the best lovers. Because they do and their couplehood was a long time coming.
L: Yes! And I think that being both best friends and lovers make for the best relationships - especially long term :) <3
Knowing each other well, and appreciating each other, having things to talk about...that's just as important as the passion.
One of the things I really enjoyed about Linden and Steph was how they were always cheering each other on. Linden helped Steph have the courage to start her own clothing store, and she made him feel balanced and loved - even before he could admit that love was possibly the most important ingredient in their friendship.
B: Exactly. And by that time Steph and Linden had had plenty of time to marinate in all the goodness that taking their relationship to a higher level would be. Even if it was scary. Although Linden seemed quite certain of them having staying power. :)
L: Yeah, if it hadn't been for James screwing everything up for them with his jealousy and his pettiness...
Good thing Linden survived his accident!
B: LOL Yes, definitely a good thing!
Absolutely. Their friendship was much deeper than what they had with James in my opinion. And I adored that Steph gave Linden validation - well that have validation to each other. Something they both needed and didn't get elsewhere.
L: True! Their friendship was always stronger than what either of them had with James. They spent more time with each other than all three of them, and even felt somewhat bad about that at times.
B: I'm looking forward to continuing this series. And I get to see Karina this weekend. ;)
I had a hard time putting The Pact away, spending extra time cleaning and on the daily walks. ;) I enjoyed the format, dual POV between Steph and Linden - as well as how Halle worked the time line. And despite the angst, The Pact was a lot of fun!