Member Reviews

I’m going to subtitle this: “The Emotional, Rip My Heart Out, Road Home.” If you love to get invested in characters, love a good road trip, and don’t mind feeling all the feels, this book is perfect for you.

Mack’s wife is fading away from Alzheimer’s and he is convinced he is of more help to her dead than alive. So, he fakes his death for insurance purposes and hides away in a cabin in the Wyoming wilderness.

Eighteen-year-old Brandi needs to protect her little brother, Sy, from their unstable home, so she takes him on the run, heading toward Casper, Wyoming. When they become stranded, a gentleman named Mack decides to help them on their journey to ensure their safety.

These three make such a heartwarming trio despite their heartbreaking circumstances. Mack and Brandi are flawed individuals who have made mistakes, but the lessons they learn from one another and the help they give each other are so uplifting. What starts as an unlikely friendship develops into a found family.


The Wyoming landscape was a beautiful backdrop for this road trip to forgiveness, redemption, and what family truly means.


Thank you @getredprbooks and @melissapayne_writes for the gifted book.
And thank you @brilliancepublishing for the gifted audiobook.

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This book is titled perfectly for this surely was a wild ride. Love is above all else what matters most. Brandi has had a terrible life due to her mothers addiction. The only thing she wants to do is to protect Sy, her younger brother from living the childhood she did. Mack is and has always been head over heels in love with his wife, but now that she has been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and he is deemed unable to care for her, he is lost. So so lost. Then she is When these lost souls find each other they very quickly bond and help their respective broken hearts heal. Everyone should be so lucky as to have a Mack in their life. What these three teach and learn from each other is beautiful.

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Brandi will do anything to keep her younger brother, Sy, safe from the “zombies” aka their mother and her boyfriend when they are on meth. In an argument in the house, she takes her mother’s boyfriend’s car and drives away with Sy. Mack, still grieving his dead son, Jesse, debating to end his life so his wife, Daisy can get treatment needed for cancer and Alzheimer's, runs into Brandi and Sy who need help. They team up, trying to get to Brandi and Sy’s aunt to take care of them. This was a moving story where each character was broken and had a complex backstory with past trauma. The unexpected friendship between Mack and Brandi is refreshing. I loved reading the details about Wyoming. This was an emotional read that will make your heart ache but also shows how one can love again.

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The Wild Road Home written by Melissa Payne and narrated by Landon Woodson and Lisa Cordileone is an outstanding story of love over all, of overcoming adversity and facing fears

Landon Woodson and Lisa Cordileone are a brilliant narrating team, their chapters are balanced and matched beautifully, as are their tones, cadence and character acting.

Mack Anders loves his wife Daisy. She is his match, his heart and soul. Many years ago, the couple suffered tragedy when their son Jesse drowned in a canoeing accident, their grief devastating them both. Further tragedy befalls the couple when they lose their business due to an embezzeling accountant. In the present day, Daisy has Alzheimers, needing to live in a nursing home. Mack can no longer afford to keep staying in a motel to visit her and he wants to take her to their cabin to see out their days. But their mutual friend has bad news. Daisy has cancer again. Mack has only one option, to fake his death so she will get his insurance payout

Brandi is on the run. She was let out of juevenile detention and the first thing she did was to rescue her little brother Sy from their tweaker mom and her latest boyfriend Kenny. After a dramatic confrontation, Brandi steals Kenny's Rav and races away with Sy, the little brother she raised and doted on before she was sent to juvie. Sy doesn't speak, his eyes full of the trauma he has suffered.

However, the pair hit a snag. The vehicle gets a flat and they are stranded in the middle of nowhere, alone, nowhere to go, no-one around, at least, they think not. That is, until Mack comes to their aid

I absolutely loved this audiobook. I was invested start to finish, especially with the bear encounters and Brandi's verbalising leet speak. Melissa Payne has a fantastic narrative, blending the outdoor life with urban life with ease, across generations. Capturing the heart and soul of a small community and the darkness of drug addiction and its fallout on families.

I believe a special nod is needed for Mack and Daisy's journey through Alzheimers and her battle with cancer, right until the end. My heart, my heart.

An incredible author to watch out for

Thank you to Netgalley, Brilliance Publishing | Brilliance Audio, the outstanding author Melissa Payne and narrators Landon Woodson and Lisa Cordileone for this exceptional audiobook. My review is left voluntarily and all opinions are my own

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This is definitely a great book it was just unfortunately not the book for me, I believe I also did not connect with the narration which didn't help me enjoy the story more. I really wanted to love it.

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Melissa Payne develops unforgettable characters. I still think about Vega and Eve from A Light in the Forest over a year after reading it. I have no doubt that Brandi, Mack and Sy will be with me for a long time as well. I love books that tackle tough topics and all of this author’s books have taken them head on and opened my eyes to new perspectives. This beautiful book tugged hard at my heartstrings and I was inspired by both Brandi’s bravery and perseverance and Mack’s dedication to helping her despite every reason to be reluctant. The narrators were absolutely perfect for these incredibly special characters.

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Thank you NetGalley and Brilliance Publishing for an ARC of The Wild Road Home.

This is such a beautifully written story containing themes of love, loss, addiction, and found family. It's a story about picking yourself up when all feels lost and having the audacity to hope for the best anyway.

My only real complaint about this book is that I wish we would have had a bit more background on the characters before we jumped right into the story. The connection with the characters I was looking for to really pull me into the book in the beginning didn't really happen until 20% - 30% in.

This book will pull at the heartstrings of readers and will leave them thinking about this story for a long time to come.

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This book was WOW! You know, the kind of book that you feel you are better after reading it. The book that you learn life lessons from. This is that book.

This is a novel of richly hued characters. You root for them, you want the best for them and you hurt when they hurt.

Many thanks to Net Galley and Brilliance Audio for an audio ARC of this book for an honest review.

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I don't believe in leaving bad reviews so I won't. I will say this author trying not to cuss as a grumpy old man but putting God in the curse got to me and made me not want to put my full heart into the book. With that being said it was a good book I would recommend it it's different than most of the books I read from here which I enjoyed.

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