What is this about?: Billy Robinson is an ex cop who runs an inn in a small town. When a drug dealer moves in, he is forced to make a decision about standing back or stepping forward to be someone his friends can count on.
What else is this about: It’s about finding a family when you least expect it
Ex-Boston homicide detective Billy Robinson has retreated to a quiet life on the New England coast. Struggling to cope following the death of his beloved wife, he must now run the inn that Siobhan took care of so well.
The inn’s quirky residents help keep Billy on solid ground as he grieves, and the group soon become an unconventional family. But this small town is in the grips of a growing opioid epidemic, and when a young resident gets hooked into the crisis, Billy knows he must act to save the people in the inn that he has grown to care so much about.
With his secretive past in Boston catching up to him, can Billy survive long enough to save the town – and its beloved inn – from ruin?
The book opens with Billy mourning his wife, Siobhan’s death, along with the residents in their inn, in a small town. They’re a motley crew, but as the book progresses quickly it becomes apparent that they’re more like family, brought together by Siobhan. Her loss affects them all and leaves a hole in their lives.
Billy’s grief is palpable and his method of grieving is to retreat into himself. However, when he discovers that a drug dealer has moved into their little town, and his reach has extended to the people in the inn, Billy decides to step up and protect the people he considers his own.
It is the people in the inn that make this book so compelling: Nick, the soldier back from Iraq who still has PTSD flashbacks, Susan that ex-FBI agent and her friend Effie, whose throat has been cut so she can’t speak. There’s the ex mafia gentleman, the town Sherriff and a doctor — and there’s Marni. The young girl who Billy very much wants to step up for and guide more than anything.
Despite the large cast of characters, the book manages to give each character enough attention, background and all, drawing readers into their world and revealing more about them all and Billy too. The book’s focus is the action, with the characters working together seamlessly (and sometimes not so seamlessly) and revealing more about themselves in the process.
I almost feel like this is an action movie in the making, which honestly made it all the more interesting for me. Sometimes, you need the action, the speed with which things happen can be just as effective in building a story, supported by great characterisation.