I'm so excited to kick of the Falling For Max Blog Tour, with Shannon Stacey. The tour is hosted by Book Trib/Media Muscle. My stop includes a review and giveaway. Thanks for stopping by!
Series: Kowalski Family #9
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Carina Press
Publication Date: 7/29/14
Rating: 3-3.5 stars
Max Crawford has reached the point in life where he's starting to think about settling down. Unfortunately, he's always been a little awkward when it comes to social interactions, and working from home doesn't help. He spends so much time alone, painting beautiful, historically accurate model trains that half of Whitford has begun to joke that he may be a serial killer. Not exactly prime husband material.Tori Burns has found happiness in Maine, thanks in large part to her shifts at the Trailside Diner. She likes the work, and she loves the local gossip. When shy, geeky Max Crawford becomes a regular, she's intrigued. When she finds out he's in the market for a wife, she's fascinated…and determined to help.Molding Max into every woman's dream turns out to be much easier than expected. But has Tori's plan worked a little too well? As she turns his comfortable life all sorts of upside down, she'll have to find a way to show just how she's fallen for him…the real him.
Falling For Max is my first step into the Kowalski Family series. I have to admit that at nine books deep, it's a bit daunting! I know a lot of readers who adore this series, set in small town Maine. I enjoy big small-town series as well, even more when there is a center like the Kowalskis.
I'm going to admit straightaway that I did find the large cast of supporting characters in Falling For Max to be a bit overwhelming. The author did a very good job of briefly conveying which couples were paired together and how they all interconnected. I still struggled to keep everyone straight, but that's on me. Since I had to connect the dots so often, I did have a harder time connecting to the characters. Looking back, if you're a reader who needs to know those connections, I would probably suggest not jumping in at book nine.
That aside, I found Falling For Max to be a very sweet, very straightforward romance. Max Crawford was an interesting romantic lead, not one I encounter often. Whereas a lot of leading men are self-assured and not looking for love, Max was shy, a bit of a loner, and ready to settle down. I found his organization, over-analytical thoughts, and always logical answers to be cute, at least on paper. It's no exaggeration to say that Max was awkward, but he was also really endearing. And apparently hot.
So Max is in search of a lady, but doesn't know how to land one. That's where Tori Burns comes into the story. Tori is a graphic designer (mostly book covers, yay!) who fills in at the local diner in an effort to socialize. Okay, I don't know that I bought that. If I'm going to socialize it's going to be over food and drinks that I'm not serving. But hey, I'm notoriously lazy. Tori and Max form a sweet, honest friendship and she agrees to help him find a date. But it's not going to be her since she has parent issues and professes she will never settle down.
Of course, we all know this means that Tori and Max will probably fall in love while she's helping him find all the right moves. And that's where my straightforward romance assessment comes in. Falling For Max has a fairly linear plot, with no surprises jumping out to change the course. It was sweet and very slightly spicy in the romance department.If you're okay with that, seek the comfort of a sweet, easy romance, then this will likely fit the bill.
"You're like my favorite book. I linger turning the pages because I don't want to reach the end, and I want to read passages over and over. Savoring the words."
"Turn the damn page," she said, her voice pleading.
Kowalski Family Series
(covers lead to GoodReads pages)
I have one copy of Falling For Max to give away, courtesy of the publisher. Must be 18+ years of age; open to US only.
About Shannon Stacey
SHANNON STACEY is a New York Times and USA Today bestselling author who lives with her husband and two sons in New England. Her two favorite activities are writing stories of happily ever after and riding her four-wheeler. From May to November, the Stacey family spends their weekends on their ATVs, making loads of muddy laundry to keep Shannon busy when she’s not at her computer. She prefers writing to laundry, however, and considers herself lucky she got to be an author when she grew up. You can contact Shannon through her website, shannonstacey.com, where she maintains an almost daily blog, or visit her on Twitter at @shannonstacey.