Series: Kowalski Family, #9
Publisher: Carina Press
Publishing Date: July 29, 2014
Format: paperback, purchased
Links: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N
Goodreads rating: 3 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.
The first book I read by Shannon Stacey was Exclusively Yours, the first of the Kowalski series. I really liked her simple style of writing with intriguing and fun characters, so I knew I had to keep reading her work. I found this one at a local used book store and couldn't pass it up. While I certainly didn't read the series in order (considering this is only the second one I've read), I didn't feel like I was missing too much. I'd like to read the other characters' stories, but I'll get there eventually.
I liked how simple this story was. There wasn't a huge fallout like in a lot of romance novels, but just enough of one to make your heart ache and then a happily ever after. Max is a quiet guy who likes to keep to himself, though he's very good looking and funny. Tori, on the other hand, is outgoing and loves interacting with people she meets at the diner. They're a great match for each other since Tori draws out the fun, witty side of Max, and Max draws out the serious, thoughtful side of Tori. It was really fun to read their story and I enjoyed it. A lot of times I love a big, dramatic fallout, but not having something huge in this story really fit the characters. It was a fun, fast-paced book and I look forward to reading more from her.