Alison Bliss returns to the blog today with the third in her A Perfect Fit series, this one narrated by Violet Strong. Please read on for my review of
More to Love
I’d read the first in this series and really liked it – and this book brought in characters from that book, as well as a couple that were newer to me – but the premise is entirely the same. Acceptance … accepting yourself even if you aren’t the prototype of what’s popular or “hot” and the issues that surround finding that acceptance. And in this book, Bliss throws us a curveball using a completely confident, sassy and well-balanced heroine that is a ‘curvy’ girl, and gives us a hero who, after a childhood as a ‘fat kid’ still struggles with his own food issues and the remnants of the past. But, let’s get to the story.
Jess is a girl that loves life, laughter, food and isn’t afraid to work hard to achieve a balance. Taking a chance and moving to Granite Texas, her dream is a restaurant, but her gourmet food truck will be the way to achieve it. She’s loving the place, and with business booming, it just may be time for her to start thinking in terms of a location for her restaurant. There’s just one problem – the health inspector and his repeated ‘violations’ and seeming eagle-eye on her business. But all is not what it seems – Max isn’t a health inspector: he’s actually acting on a half-baked idea that shutting down the food truck will help his friend’s ailing restaurant. Oh yes- he did. And this deception from Max, a deception that he continues to use even as he and Jess start to build a friendship (and more) is one of the many reasons that I can’t LOVE this book: in fact I liked about half of it. The Jess half. And those moments when Max was actually releasing some of that ironclad control and actually allows himself to enjoy Jess and her company. Even after coming ‘clean’, Max was left without a real sense of purpose or direction, and the only image I can conjure up about him borders on an eating-disorder. See, he’s so rigid and paranoid about any food that doesn’t “fit” into his idea of healthy food is not in the list of consideration, and his obsession about ‘eating healthy’ feels a bit too close to textbook definitions of people suffering with eating disorders.
Sadly, when you ignore the lies and see that Max’s reasons for being so rigid are tied to his childhood, there’s not much left to enjoy in the more typical ‘romance’ sense of the word. For when Jess first finds those quirks kind of ‘cute’ in a ‘what can I do about it’ sort of way, her ability to see the best pieces of Max don’t feel like enough as we know the depths to which he’ll go to deceive.
Fortunately, much of the interactions with earlier couples from the series, and some truly stellar moments where Jess’ good nature and humor shine through do help to keep listeners engaged and entertained, when they aren’t making snide comments about Max’s behavior. (Or perhaps that is just me.)
Narration for this story is provided by Violet Strong, and as with the first in the series, she manages to clearly present each character with a unique tone and pace that distinguishes characters and allows listeners to gather a ‘sense’ of both mood and attitude of each. Never stepping over a line or over-reaching for a moment, she inserts plausible breaks and tone changes that mimic conversations, feeling natural and plausible.
Stars: Overall: 3 Narration 4 Story 2
Title: More to Love
Author: Alison Bliss
Series: A Perfect Fit #3
Also in this series: Size Matters, On the Plus Side
Genre: Contemporary Romantic Comedy
Narrator: Violet Strong
Published by: Forever, Hachette Audio
Published on: 30 January, 2018
Source: Hachette Audio
Audio Length: 9 Hours: 25 minutes
Get Your Copy: Amazon ♦ Barnes&Noble ♦ iTunes ♦ Kobo ♦ Downpour ♦ IndieBound ♦ Google ♦Audible
This laugh-out-loud romantic comedy proves that, when enemies become lovers, all bets are off!
Jessa Gibson may be new in the little town of Granite, Texas, but in no time at all her gourmet food truck business is booming. Soon she'll have enough money to open the restaurant of her dreams. But first, she'll have to appease the hot local health inspector, no matter how strange his "violations" sound to her. No pink plastic gloves? Really?
Max Hager isn't exactly who he says he is. Pretending to be a health inspector is a (mostly) innocent mistake. A mistake made way worse by Max's immediate, electrifying attraction to the curvy, sexy, redheaded chef. Throw in a whole lot of lust, and things in Jessa's little kitchen are about to really start heating up. But can Max find a way to come clean with Jessa before his little deception turns into a recipe for disaster?
A copy of this title was provided via Hachette Audio for purpose of honest review. I was not compensated for this review: all conclusions are my own responsibility.