Saturday, November 26, 2011

A Bride And An Inn

I have a couple of wonderful books to share with you today. While one of the books has been out for awhile, it’s just now coming out as an audio book. I’m still encouraging you to give a listen to audio books, if you don’t already. It’s a great way to ‘read’ while you’re busy doing other things.

KEEPER OF THE BRIDE by Tess Gerritsen

Nina Cormier was looking forward to getting married. She never imaged her life would be in danger when she was left at the altar on her wedding day.

Not long after Nina leaves the church, it explodes. Detective Sam Navarro with the bomb squad is called in to investigate. The sparks between Nina and Sam are electrifying as both try to deny it.

As the investigation continues, someone tries to run Nina off the road making it apparent she is a target. Nina and Sam try to uncover who or what she knows that is endangering her life and how it’s connected to a recent warehouse bombing.

Nina’s dysfunctional family is little help, but add another layer to the story. Her ex-fiancĂ© is prime suspect until he becomes a target too.

Author Tess Gerritsen does a wonderful job keeping you guessing. She adds enough twists and turns to heighten the suspense and intrigue, while fanning the flames of desire between Sam and Nina. There’s plenty of action too.

The narration by Montana Chase brings these characters to life giving them great depth. Her mannerisms will have you feeling all the emotions these characters encounter. Her interruption flows smoothly from one character to the next, giving each one their own unique voice.

KEEPER OF THE BRIDE is filled with suspense, action, and moments of tenderness and passion. There’s just the right combination to keep you on the edge of your seat until the climactic end.

Author Tess Gerritsen’s website is

Keeper Of The Bride by Tess Gerritsen, Read by Montana Chase, Brilliance Audio, @2011, ISBN: 978-1441875952, Unabridged, 7 Discs, Listening Time: 8 Hours 38 Minutes

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

THE NEXT ALWAYS by Nora Roberts

I was thrilled when I saw that author Nora Roberts had a new trilogy out. I’ve read and listened to a number of her trilogies and always find they are centered around strong bonds of family, friendship, loyalty, and hope. The family core (whether blood or otherwise) plays an essential element in these trilogies and I find that a wonderful feature.

THE NEXT ALWAYS, the first book in the Inn Boonsboro Trilogy, has this family-related core. In fact, there are multiple units in the story that come together as one including the close-knit atmosphere of a small town.

Clare Murphy Brewster returns to Boonsboro (Maryland) to raise her 3 young boys near her parents after her husband is killed in service. Clare is busy caring for her boys and operating her bookstore, Turn The Page. She barely has time for herself much less a love life.

Meanwhile, the Montgomery brothers - Beckett, Ryder and Owen - are renovating a historical inn on Main Street across from Clare’s store. The brothers have the help of their fun-loving, eccentric mother, Justine, to restore the inn to its original grandeur.

Beckett has carried a torch for Clare since they were teenagers. He has given her time and space since her return. The renovation gives him an excuse to get reacquainted. As there relationship beings to grow, a stalker has other plans for Clare.

In addition, since the inn s over 200 years old there’s apparently a ghost haunting it. She makes her presence known to only a few, including Beckett, and plays a key role near the end.

While Clare and Beckett’s relationship moves slowly, it’s realistic. Both have time-consuming jobs and Clare has 3 small boys. Dates have to fit around hectic schedules and sick children. The time Beckett spends with Clare’s boys is humorous and hear-warming. Clare’s friends, Avery and Hope, also play major roles in her life, as Beckett’s brothers play in his.

Roberts goes into great detail describing the renovation progress. She gives vivid descriptions of the inn’s look and atmosphere. The rooms, each named after literary lovers, are beautifully described. Writers are encouraged to write what they know. Well, Roberts knows this inn (it really exists) and she’s able to put the reader into the inn because of that.

Macleod Andrews does an amazing job narrating the story. His voice has just the perfect blend of shyness and sexuality when he portrays Beckett. His interruption of Clare brings out her vulnerability while putting on a brave front. His vocals as Clare’s boys will make you smile and laugh out loud. He does a wonderful job bringing the supporting characters to life. His mannerisms throughout the story are an added bonus.

THE NEXT ALWAYS is more than a romance story with a hint of suspense. It’s about the bond between brothers, the loyalty of friendship, the compassion of small towns, pride in history, and the strength of family.

There really is a Inn Boonsboro and Turn The Page book store. Roberts and her husband, Bruce Wilder, renovated the inn which matches the one in the book. In addition, Wilder owns the book store across the street from the inn. For more on these and other elements related to the book, visit

Real life agendas fall by the wayside as you get absorbed in Clare and Beckett’s world. I don’t think I’ve done the story or the narration justice here today so give it a listen (or read) for yourself.

The next installment in the series, THE LAST BOYFRIEND, is slated for release in May 2012.

Author Nora Roberts’ website is

The Next Always by Nora Roberts, Book One of the Inn Boonsboro Trilogy, Read by Macleod Andrews, Brilliance Audio, @2011, ISBN: 978-1455806843, Unabridged, 10 Discs, Listening Time: 11 Hours 26 Minutes

FTC Full Disclosure - This audio book was sent to me by the publisher in hopes I would review it. However, receiving the complimentary copy did not influence my review.

Thanks so much for stopping by today. Have you read (or listened) to either of these books? What are your thoughts on them?



  1. I haven't read either of those but did read another Tess Gerritson book that was very well thought out with a lot of medical and historical research. Of course Norah Roberts is a long time favorite.

  2. Not any of these, but I have read one Tess Gerritsen. I found it okay, but like many others.

    So I am more tempted to try Nora Roberts.

  3. Two great authors. Thanks for the recommendation. I am a big fan of Nora Roberts.


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