The Last Beginning by Lauren James
Sixteen years ago, after a scandal that rocked the world, teenagers Katherine and Matthew vanished without a trace. Now Clove Sutcliffe is determined to find her long lost relatives. But where do you start looking for a couple who seem to have been reincarnated at every key moment in history? Who were Kate and Matt? Why were they born again and again? And who is the mysterious Ella, who keeps appearing at every turn in Clove’s investigation?
For Clove, there is a mystery to solve in the past and a love to find in the future.
This is the second book in The Next Together series if you would like to read my review of the first book you can find it here.
Spoiler Free Section
I gave this book a four out of five stars, I did really enjoy this book but not as much as the first book and I think that was because of the different stories that we got to see within the first book. I also did enjoy our main characters in the first book more than in this book which may be because of their ages and the more mature outlooks that they had.
I mostly enjoyed the new characters that we were introduced to in this novel. Clove was one of my favourites and least favourites at the same time, she was extremely annoying and childish for the first half of the book and I hated reading from her perspective but then as we start to see her figuring some things out and growing up more we begin to see just how caring and funny she can be. Spart was also one of my favourite characters, I always find that I really enjoy AI’s in books they are always really interesting and often super witty. Spart definitely reminded me of Iko from the Lunar Chronicles.
Once again I really enjoyed the news articles, notes and mixed media that Lauren James uses within her books, it always adds more interest and gives you information about something that is going on without it seeming like an info dump. The writing was easy to read from and allowed me to get through it pretty fast although it can seem kind of simplistic at some points.
I didn’t read the synopsis of this book before going into it because I like to know as little as possible since the blurbs often give too much away about the story. I would definitely recommend not reading the synopsis of this book if you haven’t already since the book already gives away quite a lot already.
!This section will include spoilers from the book so if you have not yet read it I would not recommend reading this section just yet!
The suspense in this book almost killed me in the beginning, I was getting so confused about why Clove was calling Tom and Jen, mom and dad when we knew that Kate and Matt were her parents. We find out throughout the book that Kate and Matt go missing after Matts jail break (and we find out why that is at the end) and when they don’t come back Tom steps up and becomes her parent and then finds Jen. I love Tom and Jen as parents they are so funny and caring and have this relationship that is so in sync and complements each other. I enjoyed the diversity that was involved in this novel having an adopted and gay main character is something that I have not come across before in my books but it is something that I think should be more mainstream in novels.
I really enjoyed the romance in this book between Clove and Ella and I loved getting to see all of the notes and conversations at the beginning of each chapter just like we had in the previous book with Kate and Matt. I didn’t really like how these notes could be pretty spoilery though as I would have preferred not knowing what was going on, instead we know from the beginning that Ella is a time traveller, I think if we hadn’t known this it would have made a much bigger impact when Clove had to leave her behind in 1745 and then when she shows up again later on. Because we were told when and where Clove and Ella went back in time I really expected all of the twists and it kind of made me lose interest towards the end of the book.
I was so happy to finally find out why Kate and Matt keep being reincarnated through out time and how it works. Now we know that they were chosen and actually decided that they would like to help the world over and over again in any way they could. They are such kind and morally just people and we have seen just what good they can do together.
I was content with the ending of the duology we get a happy ending in which everyone is back together again and Kate and Matt finally get to live normal and peaceful lives in multiple lifetimes. After finishing this novel I found the novella Another Together which I am pretty excited to read! We get to see another one of Kate and Matt’s lives and their is a serial killer involved, I am really hoping that I am not disappointed by it 🙂
Thank you for reading