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The Next Always (Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy)

The Next Always - MacLeod Andrews, Nora Roberts I’m not much of a contemporary romance reader, but once in awhile I get in the mood. I’d read the Bride Quartet by Nora Roberts a few years ago, so thought I’d given this one a try when the audible version was offered for free. MacLeod Andrews is the narrator. It started out good. The three Montgomery brothers work with their mother to restore an historic inn in small town Boonsboro. The relationships between the brothers, their mother and the local residents is charming. I get invested in the story…..but then the children arrive on scene. Don’t get me wrong. I love kids. Unfortunately, the narrator’s rendition of children is so gratingly whiny that it made me cringe and eventually stop listening.

However, the premise of the book stuck with me and after a few months I decided to finish it via ebook. I’m glad I gave it another try. I enjoyed seeing the Inn take shape--each room is named for and designed around a literary couple: Darcy and Elizabeth, Jane and Rochester, Eve and Roarke, etc. The romance of the youngest brother Becket, and local bookstore owner Clare, mother of 3 young boys, is delightful. And, the building relationship between Becket and the boys is engaging and sometimes laugh out loud funny. This is a warm family romance, the first book of the Inn BoonsBoro Trilogy. I’m looking forward to spending more time with these characters and am off to check out the second book.