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Always Beth by Louise Hudson

Always Beth


Bethany Cross is ready for the mother of all fresh starts. No more self-sacrifice. No more city smog. And definitely no more lying, cheating ex-husbands who make divorce proceedings an actual living hell. Instead: Cotswolds. Country air. Candle making.

But when her Yorkshire Terrier, Poppy, makes the “acquaintance” of a rather virile Dachshund, the irritatingly handsome barrister attached to him makes Beth’s newly simple life…complicated.

James Taylor has ditched the courtroom for the countryside while he cares for his terminally ill sister. When a prickly, flame-haired, and newly single Londoner moves into the Taylors’ rental cottage, she looks like just the distraction James needs. But each encounter is an escape that only amplifies just how much he’s about to lose.

As Beth’s walls of caution start to crumble under James’ touch, past scars threaten to engulf the first sparks of chemistry. And when reality catches up with them, both must find a way forward — even when the future seems unbearable.


My heart hurts after reading this one. I chose this book to read because I had a bout with breast cancer last year and I connected with Lauren immediately.

Always Beth is a standalone read told from dual first-person perspectives. It starts with a meet-hate in a lovely field in Cotswold when a randy dachshund named Dick (Richard) and an adorable Yorkshire terrier named Poppy have a tryst in the grass. Needless to say, the owners, barrister James Taylor and soon-to-be divorced Bethany Cross butt heads on whether it is harmless or not. 

Beth is ready to start over after discovering her husband’s infidelity. Moving to the country from London is supposed to give her peace, but her husband who is a member of parliament froze all their assets and she has no money to pay for good legal advice. She’s living off her new wax melt business and now she has to deal with the cocky neighbor who has no remorse over his dog deflowering her precious pup. However, she can’t stop fantasizing about the handsome man with his sexy smile and teasing ways. She promised herself no more men, but that doesn’t seem to be in the cards anymore.

James took a leave from his firm in London to stay with his sister Lauren who is terminally ill. When a prickly, attractive redhead moves into the cottage down the lane, he is torn between spending time with his dying sister or spending time with a woman who promises to be there for him when he’s ready. Will the choice he makes be the right one?

Beth has had a rough time of it being married to a narcissist who broke his promises and didn’t believe she was enough. My heart goes out to her as she tries to start over with hardly anything to her name and an uphill battle to fight for what is hers. Despite her predicament, she has a great sense of humor and a sense of adventure and her attraction to James is not surprising because, let’s face it, he’s hot. Speaking of James, he’s a mess. He feels guilty for not being here for his sister Lauren over the years and now it’s too late. His love for his sister is beautiful and I adore their sibling rapport whether they are fighting or ribbing each other. James needs someone to talk to so badly, and Beth fills that role, but he hides his life from her and his secrets only get him in trouble. The sex is off the charts with these two and though James makes no promises and wants it casual, it turns out to be more than that. James has a lot of grief to deal with toward the end and unfortunately chooses himself, but fate has a way of changing everything and with some groveling and forgiveness there is a bittersweet and surprising happily-ever-after ending.

And then there is Lauren, James’ sister. I adore her dark sense of humor and I relate to her fear of leaving her brother behind alone. Lauren is a kind person who sets the wheels in motion to make amends with her best friend and her younger brother Jacob who fell out with James so many years ago. Also, Lauren’s support of Beth and James’ relationship is more than it seems as she leaves a beautiful and stunning legacy.

I highly recommend this gorgeous romance filled with laughter and tears, and about finding your path with the one you are destined for.

Thank you to Ms. Hudson for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.


Always Beth

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Louise HudsonLouise Hudson adores all things romance, from musicals, to films and most importantly books. Her kindle is permanently by her side so she can steal every spare opportunity to catch up on reading. Having discovered her love of storytelling at a young age, she decided it was now time to start sharing her characters with the world. Her debut novel, Always Beth, is due for release in the Spring of 2023.

She lives in the southeast of England with her family and miniature bearded dragon.

Follow Louise on her website, Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.


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