Publish Date: June 4th
How I got this book: Edelweiss
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.
*Blurb from Goodreads*
I really do love to new adult genre, and I’m so glad that I started reading within this genre. I hadn’t read the first book in Carmack’s series, but the blurb with this book really struck me as being fun and wonderful.
Max moved away from her parents and started finally living the life she wanted, but made a point to keep her life a secret from her family. But when they show up in town unexpectedly, Max knows her boyfriend Mace won’t life up to their standards, so she begs a stranger in the coffee shop to act as her boyfriend.
Cade is an actor, and when the beautiful Max asks him to play as her boyfriend, he thinks of it as another job. But Cade is swept away by the energy Max has and the chemistry between them. As Max’s family threatens to cut her off, she begs Cade to come home with her for the Holidays. He agrees and their relationship wavers between fake, real, easy, hard, and so much more. Although Cade and Max are perfect for one another, will they be able to see it in time?
I have to say, I love this setup. It was a lot like the marriage of convenience tropes that I absolutely love, and it had a lot of the same themes. One of the things that really struck me was just how much Cade and Max were there to support one another, despite having known each other for only a limited time. They were both so insecure about their feelings towards one another, and so scared to talk about it, but when it came to lending a supporting hand to the other, they were there. One hundred percent.
I loved Cade. I thought he was such a great hero. He was intrigued by Max, wanted to know her better, and was so incredibly supportive of her decision on how to handle her parents, and yet also pushed her to show her parents exactly the kind of woman she was, and wanted to be. I loved that he was at her back at every turn, despite their few miscommunications. The only thing I wish Cade would have done differently would have been to work a little bit on his own self confidence. He was so insecure with Max’s feelings toward him, and I wanted him to have more security in him own self-worth.
I adored Max as well, she was strong and yet insecure at the same time. She had so much trauma from her past and watching her deal with it, especially with Cade at her side was such a wonderful journey. I felt so bad for her and the guilt she carried around. When she was finally able to let it go, I’m pretty sure I cried during that scene!
I never read the first book in this series. Although I really liked this book, and Carmack’s writing, I don’t know that I would go back and read the first book, as the plot doesn’t really appeal to me. However, the third book in the series looks pretty interesting, and I’m looking forward to reading that book.
All in all I really enjoyed my first book from Carmack. I thought both Cade and Max were fabulous new adult characters that had a lot of self exploration and discovery to go through, and I loved their journey. The opposites attract and arranged relationship themes were ones that I adore, and thought were so well done. I’m anxious to see more from Carmack.
I give Faking It a B