The other day I finished listening to my new release, the audiobook version of Coulson’s Lessons, narrated by Reagan West. To say I am thrilled with this narrator would be an understatement. I can’t imagine another narrator doing a better job with this series.

Quite honestly, it almost felt I was watching—but in this case listening—to a theatrical performance of my work. In some instances, I actually cried—and not because I was unhappy with what I had written.

I’m anxiously waiting for the fourth book in the series to come out in audiobook. Fortunately, it’s not too long a wait—May 26 for Coulson’s Secret. I would urge those of you who enjoy audiobooks to give this series a try.

Coulson’s Wife, the first book in the Coulson Family Saga, begins during the 1918 pandemic and takes the readers to the 1940s. It’s a bittersweet story of love, friendship and family secrets. 

The series includes five books, eventually bringing readers to relatively current times. It tackles a number of heavy topics: homosexuality, women’s rights, social class, infidelity, rape, sexuality and abuse. But it is also about family, friendship, love, survival and overcoming obstacles. 

For my Lake Havasu friends, I loosely patterned Coulson—the setting for the series—after Lake Havasu City—at least how it was founded.

I will caution those who are offended with sex or cursing in books, they might want to steer clear of this series, especially Coulson’s Lessons. While Lessons is book three in the series, it is actually the first book I wrote in the series, back in the mid-1990s.  It was the first book of fiction I self-published in 2011.  After its release, it grew into a series.

When listening to Coulson’s Lessons, I realized my writing style has evolved over the last twenty-five years. For one thing, I would probably tone the sex scenes down a bit in that one book…lol.  But I still feel strongly about the story, and in many ways, the sex scenes were necessary considering the story I am telling. My mother still claims Coulson’s Lessons (originally Lessons) is still her favorite book.

In some ways, I feel I abandoned my McIntyre books (Anna J. MacIntyre is the pen name I used for the Coulson Family Saga and my Unlocked Hearts series). In 2014 I started the Haunting Danielle series, and since that time, I have written and published 24 Haunting Danielle books, with number 25 slated to be released in August of this year.

The audiobooks have allowed me to rediscover the Coulson Family Saga—which might be a strange thing for an author to say. And it may be a boastful admission, but I love the Coulson series even more now—with Reagan West narrating. In spite of some of the changes I would make if I was to go back and do it again, I am extremely proud of the Coulson Family Saga and the story it told. And if you know anything about the mind of insecure writers, that is saying a whole hell of a lot.

I also feel grateful and blessed.  I have two series now in audiobook. While I am a passionate and committed self-publisher, I did not self-publish my audiobooks. I felt it was beyond my field of expertise, a rather daunting task.  I did initially consider. I signed up for Amazon’s self-publishing platform for audiobooks and began checking out narrators. But I abandoned the process.

Then, to my surprise, Tantor Media contacted me. They wanted to buy the audio rights to my Haunting Danielle series. I think I had something like six books out at the time.  They gave me narrators to consider—and I picked Romy Nordlinger.

One reason I feel blessed—I love my narrators.  Romy Nordlinger totally nails Danielle and so many of the characters that rattle around in my head. In fact, when writing my Haunting Danielle books, Danielle in my head is the Danielle, Romy reads.

I didn’t realize how lucky I was to end up with a narrator I really liked—not until I heard fellow authors bemoan their narrators. Many were disappointed and had deep regrets.  So when the time came for me to select a narrator for Coulson Family Saga, I was somewhat nervous. But I had an idea what elements would be necessary to pull off the series, and I looked for those when listening to the auditions.

While Tantor Media is the publisher of the Haunting Danielle audiobooks, Dreamscape Media is the publisher for the Coulson Family Saga—for which I thank my agent Sarah Hershman and her team, for bringing to me.

Will the Coulson audiobooks be as lucrative as the Haunting Danielle series has been for me? I have no idea. But from an artistic perspective, I’m quite satisfied. 

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