Audiobook Review: ‘Yerba Buena’

Yerba Buena is an adult novel about two women’s separate lives and how they come together as adults. It’s about how romance and love can be messy and is imperfect. This is a novel that I can’t stop thinking about and it had some really intense moments.

Title: Yerba Burna
Author: Nina LaCour
Series: Standalone
Genres: Romance, Contemporary, LBGTQ+
Release Date: May 31, 2022

Goodreads Summary

Thank you to Libro.fm for the advanced listening copy! All opinions are my own.

In Yerba Buena, we learn about Sara who runs away from home at sixteen and has to make some difficult choices to get by, and about Emilie, a girl unsure of her place in the world and with her community. The story continues to circle back to yerba buena, which is an herb commonly found.

The story changes back and forth between Sara and Emilie’s stories and it was confusing at first, especially as an audiobook, to realize these were two separate people who never meet until they are adults later in the story. At first I found it to be quite boring but as we learned more about both of them, I became more invested.

This is an unusual story, or maybe just not the type of stories I typically read. It had moments that were very intense and will stick with me, choices that had to be made by both Sara and Emilie. Neither of their lives were the easiest, but they persevered.

This is a romance and its also not a romance. The two women eventually get together but it’s not all rainbows and butterflies and they each still carry their personal history and baggage with them, typically to do with family.

There were times I considering DNF-ing this, but since it was so short and there were enough moments to keep me engaged, I finished it. Honestly, I thought parts of this book were just plain boring. We’re told of mundane daily tasks and to me, it felt like there was no plot and the story wasn’t actually going anywhere. Maybe some people like that type of story telling – realistic fiction. I like when stories have definitive plot points and move the story forward. This did feel like real life in that things aren’t just black and white – there are so many shades of gray. You can think you do everything right but things still fall apart. These two women are still working on finding themselves when they find each other and their story isn’t really over after the last page.

This was my second Nine LaCour book and I believe she isn’t an author for me – there is nothing wrong with her writing, it’s just not what I prefer.

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The audiobook is read by Julia Whelan, who is one of my all time favorite narrators. Funny how I’ve listened to her a lot lately! I really wish this story had two narrators, one for Sara’s parts and one for Emilie’s parts. While I typically love Julia’s narration, I wasn’t in love with this narration. It was confusing at first as audio and I would recommend either reading along with the book or not listening to this one.

My Rating:

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Personally I would not recommend this book. I’m giving it 3 stars on Goodreads because it was fine, there was nothing wrong with it, but I found it boring more often than not. The plot felt forgettable because it was every day life – nothing extraordinary ever happens. If you like realistic fiction with LGBTQ+ themes, you may enjoy this one more than I did.

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One thought on “Audiobook Review: ‘Yerba Buena’

  1. Pingback: Wrap Up: May 2022

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