Tuesday, May 7, 2013

4 stars: Faking It by Cora Carmack

"Mackenzie “Max” Miller has a problem. Her parents have arrived in town for a surprise visit, and if they see her dyed hair, tattoos, and piercings, they just might disown her. Even worse, they’re expecting to meet a nice, wholesome boyfriend, not a guy named Mace who has a neck tattoo and plays in a band. All her lies are about to come crashing down around her, but then she meets Cade.

Cade moved to Philadelphia to act and to leave his problems behind in Texas. So far though, he’s kept the problems and had very little opportunity to take the stage. When Max approaches him in a coffee shop with a crazy request to pretend to be her boyfriend, he agrees to play the part. But when Cade plays the role a little too well, they’re forced to keep the ruse going. And the more they fake the relationship, the more real it begins to feel."

Expected publication: June 4th 2013 by William Morrow & Company. I received a digital ARC of this story.
What I left out of the title for this entry is that this is a sequel to Losing It. To me, this was more of a standalone, since it's really about one of the tertiary characters from that book that I had forgotten about. Although, I maybe forgot way too much from that book since I really disliked it. I'm just going to forget that book existed and I will be reviewing this one as a separate entity.

Cade "Golden Boy" was absolutely swoon-worthy. It was obvious what Max "Angry Girl" saw in him even though they were so different, and he wasn't her usual type. He was definitely the perfect guy to introduce to the parents. I wasn't very fond of Max as a character. While it was refreshing to have a bad girl with a good boy, instead of the other way around, she had too much cliched baggage. This baggage was mentioned constantly and it was why she kept trying to pull away from Cade. You know the "he's too perfect for damaged F-d up me" syndrome. That got old and made her hard to relate to and less likeable. Luckily, as in any good story, she did experience personal growth and I no longer felt the need to punch her.

The writing was far better than Carmack's last book. The pacing was a huge improvement. My favorite part of the book was the risky decisions the characters made, which seemed like a writing exercise for the author; how sinful/fun could she make the characters respond in order to push the limits, but be believable? There was a scene outside of a bar the first day they had met each other where Cade wanted to prove to Max that he wasn't a Golden Boy, nor was he gay... it was hot, fun, and believable. Also the scene where the two still didn't really know each other and Cade walked in while she was having a sex dream about him. Fun times!

This is a new adult, contemporary romance, so it's as predictable as you would expect, but you don't read it to find out if the female lead will end up having a boyfriend in the end; you already know the answer. The premise was a fun one and it was part of the reason why these two were able to keep daring each other and push the limits. I loved seeing how far they would go; it's what made the story so engaging. Let's just say that there were no boundaries.

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