Enjoy this blitz. Have a great weekend!
Series: Summer #2.5
Author: C.J. Duggan
Release Date: February 15, 2015
Max Henry thought he’d left the dusty flats of Ballan behind, but when the past slams into his present, suddenly there is no escaping – even if he wanted to.
Melanie Sheehan didn’t set out to be a liar, but her last lie landed her in big trouble. Now Mel must suffer a harsh consequence – she’s not allowed out of her father’s sight.
No friends, no parties, no life.
Since impeccably good behaviour is now all she’s about, her dad, renowned Ballan local ‘Bluey’ Sheehan, is about to finally cut Mel some slack. The catch? While he heads out of town on business, she has to stay at the Onslow Hotel, and he’s entrusting Max Henry, the eldest son of Bluey’s best mate, to look out for her.
He just doesn’t know it yet.
Max, the new head barman at the Onslow Hotel, is the one boy Mel has been crushing on since forever. At a time when Mel plans to go on the straight and narrow, she is about to tell the biggest lie of all. Will Max be able to handle the fiery farm girl or should he be considered the last boy in Onslow to trust?
I have enjoyed C.J. Duggan's Summer series novels (The Boys of Summer, An Endless Summer and That One Summer). Call me a fan of the Onslow boys. This is my first read of this series' novellas (the other two are Stan and Ringer). As much as I enjoyed Max, I thought the story felt rushed and the character development of Max and Melanie lacking. Because this is a shorter piece, the connection between Max and Mel came across as the dreaded insta-love, despite Mel having a crush on Max from the time he lived in their hometown of Ballan.
Mel was best friends with Max's sister until they got into trouble one night. His sister was sent to boarding school and Mel has been grounded ever since, her dad keeping her under his careful watch. When he leaves her at The Onslow Hotel with Max as her keeper for a week, she's surprised. This is a time to show her dad he can trust her again, but Mel falls back to old habits like lying when she's around Max. Should she make him jealous by having a make-believe boyfriend? Max always viewed Mel as someone younger until he sees how she's changed. The girl has become a gorgeous woman. His mind can't seem to function when she's around. What's going on with him?
The whole boyfriend story angle didn't ring true for me plus the time frame was incredibly short. Mel is only at the hotel for a few days, not even a week, and she's letting Amy make rash decisions for her, including dragging Ringer into a silly ploy. I enjoyed the interaction between Max and Mel until their 'big scene' which again, seemed to happen way too fast and ended just as quickly. Perhaps I've been spoiled since I'm accustomed to reading novel-sized stories about these characters. Suddenly here's a shorter version with a shorter time frame and I found myself wishing Max and Mel's story was longer. I did love being able to see part of the gang from the other books again.
I really like the Summer series--the strong characters are wonderful, the setting new and interesting, the conflicts intriguing and the romance addictive. When I see a notification about a new C.J. Duggan book, I get excited. She's become an author I trust so writing this review has been hard. I did enjoy Max but really wanted this novella to be something more, something more in-depth and cohesive, something definitely longer.
Rating: 3 I liked it.
I don't know about anyone else but I am tired of seeing this same male model. He's on sooo many covers and memes, I now roll my eyes when I see him. Plus, I didn't think he looked like how I imagined Max to be.
I received a promotional copy in exchange for my honest opinion.
See all the titles in the Summer Series HERE
C.J Duggan is a number one internationally bestselling Australian author of seven independent titles of her popular New Adult Summer series. In addition to her chart-topping indie novels, C.J is set to publish two titles with Hachette, Australia with her brand-new Paradise Series in 2015 (Paradise City and Paradise Road).
C.J lives with her husband in a rural border town of New South Wales, Australia. When she isn't writing books about swoony boys and 90s pop culture you will find her renovating her hundred-year-old Victorian homestead or annoying her local travel agent for a quote to escape the chaos.
The 'Summer Series'
The Boys of Summer (December 2012)
Stan (October 2014)
An Endless Summer (July 2013)
Max (February 2015)
That One Summer (December 2013)
Ringer (March 2014)
Forever Summer (December 2015)
The 'Paradise Series'
Paradise City (April 28th, 2015)
Paradise Road (August 28th, 2015)