Sometimes I think that I might have grown out of this series. I was so looking forward to reading this new book, but I couldn´t enjoy it as much as I would have liked. I missed the charm and humor most of the other books in this series have. All in all, it was a solidly written novel but not as thrilling as the other volumes. Hopefully, the next one will be much better.

Ganz Nah Bei Dir*
by Marie Force
Lost In Love-Die Green Mountain Serie #13
The Butler, Vermont Series #7

Translation Lena Kraus
Original Title Come Together
Publisher Fischer TB on May 25, 2022
Genre Novel
Pages 444
Format Paperback
Source Fischer TB

Three years after ending his marriage, Noah Coleman has only one goal: he doesn't want to be in a relationship with a woman who could hurt him. Therefore, to be on the safe side, he avoids everyone. But there's one thing you can't avoid: Brianna Esposito is the architect. Who oversees the rebuilding of the Admiral Butler Inn. And Noah's company is responsible for the construction work. First, the shreds fly between the two, then the sparks. But can Noah ever really let Brianna into his heart?
Noah doesn´t want to answer questions about his wife or his marriage. Work and his company are all he knows and wants. Until a new project is bringing Brianna to Butler. That woman drives him crazy and makes him feel things he doesn´t want to feel. So he does everything to keep her at bay. But his grandfather thinks otherwise. And soon Noah finds himself in a game he doesn´t want to play but has to because in Butler you´re never alone.

The novel is clearly written by Marie Force. There is no doubt about it. And yet I was missing something. That particular something, to be precise. Sure, there are also beautiful scenes and some wonderful dialogues. But I missed the undercurrent of charm and humor that underlies most books about the Abbott family.

In contrast, Butler's beautiful wintry landscape really shines. I could imagine the snowy mountains, the sometimes-icy roads, and the setting of the place. And only the scene with moose Fred. In addition to the Hunter scene a few chapters earlier, that was successful. Brianna's reaction is lovely and made me smile. I would have liked to see more of such scenes.

This time the author lets her two main characters go through an emotional roller coaster that has washed up. Desperation, pain, and bewilderment are at the forefront. And yet that all but fades away once Hunter Abbott comes into play.

What an amazing scene. Hunter Abbott becomes a father and goes berserk while his wife is in labor. Heaven, what tears have I laughed at. Ironically, the man who plans everything from A to Z and prepares a backup plan for every step in the plan so that nothing can go wrong and for whom everything must be right from the beginning to end is presented here as the purest bundle of nerves. I almost felt sorry for the poor guy. And with exactly this scene he stole the show from the actual main character, his cousin Noah Coleman.

Not the best of the series, but solid entertainment, nonetheless. Well, I would have liked a little more humor and charm from the previous volumes in this story, but the last few chapters made up for it a lot. Unfortunately, I couldn't convince myself to give the story a higher rating. Just read it yourself and make up your own mind.

Happy reading

*This book was kindly provided to me by Fischer TB in exchange for an honest and unbiased review. Thank you. Therefore, the cover of the German edition is shown first in this review.

Deutsche Rezension

Klar, der Roman ist eindeutig von Marie Force geschrieben. Daran besteht kein Zweifel. Und trotzdem hat mir etwas gefehlt. Das gewisse Etwas, um genau zu sein. Sicher, es gibt auch hier wunderschöne Szenen und zum Teil herrliche Dialoge. Aber der unterschwellige Charme und Humor, der den meisten Büchern über die Abbott-Familie zugrunde liegt, den habe ich hier doch etwas vermisst. Dagegen glänzt die schöne winterliche Landschaft von Butler so richtig. Die verschneiten Berge, die teilweise eisigen Straßen und das Setting des Ortes konnte ich mir wunderbar vorstellen. Und erst die Szene mit Elch Fred. Die war neben der Hunter-Szene einige Kapitel vorher wirklich gelungen. Briannas Reaktion ist herrlich und bescherte mir ein Lächeln. Von solchen Szenen hätte ich gerne mehr gesehen.

Dieses Mal lässt die Autorin ihre beiden Hauptfiguren durch eine emotionale Achterbahn gehen, die sich gewaschen hat. Da stehen Verzweiflung, Schmerz und Fassungslosigkeit an vorderster Stelle. Und dennoch verblasst das beinahe vollständig, sobald Hunter Abbott ins Spiel kommt.

Was für eine fantastische Szene. Da wird Hunter Abbott Vater und dreht völlig durch, während seine Frau in den Wehen liegt. Himmel, was habe ich da Tränen gelacht. Ausgerechnet der Mann, der alles von A bis Z durchplant und sich für jeden Schritt im Plan einen Ersatzplan zurechtlegt, damit auch ja nichts schief gehen kann und bei dem alles von vorne bis hinten stimmen muss, ausgerechnet der wird hier als das reinste Nervenbündel präsentiert. Ich habe fast schon Mitleid mit dem armen Kerl gehabt. Und mit genau dieser Szene hat er der eigentlichen Hauptfigur, seinem Cousin Noah Coleman mal ganz nebenbei die Show gestohlen.

Nicht gerade der beste Band der Serie, aber doch solide Unterhaltung. Gut, ich hätte mir etwas mehr Humor und Charme der vorherigen Bände in dieser Geschichte gewünscht, aber die letzten paar Kapitel haben dann doch einiges wieder wettgemacht. Konnten mich aber leider nicht davon überzeugen, der Geschichte eine höhere Bewertung zu geben. Einfach selbst lesen und ein eigenes Bild machen.

*This book was originally published Come Together by HTJB on July 13, 2021.

Marie Force
Marie Force ©Pamela Sarinha

Marie Force is the New York Times, USA Today, and Wall Street Journal bestselling, award-winning author of contemporary romance. She writes series as well as stand-alone novels. While her husband was in the U.S. Navy, Marie lived in Spain, Maryland, and Florida, and she is now settled in her home state of Rhode Island.


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