Title: The Next Always
Series: Inn Boonsboro Trilogy #1
Author: Nora Roberts
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Genre(s): Fantasy, Contemporary Romance
The historic hotel in Boonsboro has endured war and peace, changing hands, even rumored hauntings. Now it’s getting a major facelift from the Montgomery brothers and their eccentric mother. Beckett is the architect of the family, and his social life consists mostly of talking shop over pizza and beer. But there’s another project he’s got his eye on: the girl he’s been waiting to kiss since he was fifteen.
After losing her husband and returning to her hometown, Clare Brewster soon settles into her life as the mother of three young sons while running the town’s bookstore. Busy, with little time for romance, Clare is drawn across the street by Beckett’s transformation of the old inn, wanting to take a closer look . . . at the building and the man behind it.
With the grand opening inching closer, Beckett’s happy to give Clare a private tour - one room at a time. It’s no first date, but these stolen moments are the beginning of something new - and open the door to the extraordinary adventure of what comes next . . .
What an easy breezy read! I really do love Nora's books. If I had to pick the one thing that makes Nora my favorite author it would be the dialogue she writes for her characters—whether it be spoken between friends, siblings, or parent and child, it blows me away every time! I can't help being drawn into the tight knit circle of amazing characters. In this book, the first of the new Inn Boonsboro Trilogy, it's the Montgomery family and several remarkable women. This is Beckett and Claire's story. Of course there is chemistry between them, but there is so much more...some of the "more" being her three young sons: Harry, Liam, and Murphy. Beckett is one of three boys. When he is with Claire's boys it's chaotic and messy and loud (all things I detest in real life) and I want to be there to experience that bond. When Claire is dealing with the day-to-day stuff: meals, playtime, homework, baths, unending questions, I want to be the friend who is welcome in her life. When Justine Montgomery is talking with Beckett about him taking his time asking Claire out I laughed out loud. Just as I did when Beckett was "babysitting" the boys the first time. Claire's epiphany that lead to the title of the book is perfect! This book was filled with so many magical moments, and I'm not even referring to the ghost!
The fact that the location, Boonsboro, is real and that Nora and her family own the businesses whose names are used in the book, had me wondering...at first. The more I read, the more I believed this probably helped Nora portray this town, the businesses, the characters even more vividly than is her norm. This place is her home. (I've been to Boonsboro several times...I really want to return.) These characters are so remarkable. (I am anxious to spend more time with them in the next two books.)
Six months. We have to wait six months for Owen and Avery's story in The Last Boyfriend. Eager? Yes. But, I also know it will be worth the wait...they always are!