Narrator: Julia Whelan
Published by HarperAudio on April 24, 2018
Amazon, Audible, Libro.fm, Barnes & Noble, Apple
American Ella Durran has had the same plan for her life since she was thirteen: Study at Oxford. At 24, she’s finally made it to England on a Rhodes Scholarship when she’s offered an unbelievable position in a rising political star’s presidential campaign. With the promise that she’ll work remotely and return to DC at the end of her Oxford year, she’s free to enjoy her Once in a Lifetime Experience. That is, until a smart-mouthed local who is too quick with his tongue and his car ruins her shirt and her first day.
When Ella discovers that her English literature course will be taught by none other than that same local, Jamie Davenport, she thinks for the first time that Oxford might not be all she’s envisioned. But a late-night drink reveals a connection she wasn’t anticipating finding and what begins as a casual fling soon develops into something much more when Ella learns Jamie has a life-changing secret.
Immediately, Ella is faced with a seemingly impossible decision: turn her back on the man she’s falling in love with to follow her political dreams or be there for him during a trial neither are truly prepared for. As the end of her year in Oxford rapidly approaches, Ella must decide if the dreams she’s always wanted are the same ones she’s now yearning for.
I met Julia Whelan this August at Book Bonanza in Texas and learned about this audiobook. She is a favorite narrator but I didn’t know she had authored a book as well. My Oxford Year is in that dreaded category called women’s fiction but is more accurately life fiction.
This is Ella’s story of personal growth and life choices. She is a talent in the political world. She is Rhodes Scholar. Her plan has always been to go to Oxford for a graduate year and study English literature. Nothing goes exactly as she expects. She is offered a job to work on the campaign of a promising presidential candidate. She encounters a playboy who makes her furious but turns out to be more than he seems. There are career choices, learning choices, family dynamics and relationship decisions.
Ella makes wonderful friends and learns about herself and what she really wants. I enjoyed the setting, the characters and their developments. I recommend this highly!
Julia talked about the narration on an audio panel. It was challenging with all the English accents from different regions and American speech, with both male and female voices. She did a superb job and it was an entertaining performance. My emotions were strong with all the character feelings. I listened at my usual 1.5x speed.
Listen to a clip:
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Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2019 Audiobooks
- 2019 Library-Love
- BTB 2019