Melissa Tagg certainly delivered with her debut book, Made to Last. The story line is fast paced with good humor mixed in at just the right moments. I found the characters to be well developed. I loved all the side stories with the secondary characters. Melissa has a secondary novel due out this summer. I am hoping it tells Blaze's story, because he is a man with a story begging to be told.
Made to Last is a refreshing book. The main heroine is quite unlike any other I have read in Christian Fiction. She is strong willed and determined, but she is also not adverse to lying in order to accomplish her goals. At times, I struggled to relate to Randi, but most of the time I found myself cheering for her as she worked to find her way in the competitive world of reality television.
I loved how Melissa brought closure at the end of the book.
I truly cannot believe this is a debut novel. Melissa Tagg is incredibly talented, and her book has stayed with me since I read it.
It's not just the characters, who are completely lovable and -- understandably -- flawed. It's not just the dialogue, which is witty and reminiscent of Gilmore Girls, or the setting, which made me want to move to the mountains.
To me, the thing that stood out most is the way Tagg weaves the story together, using descriptions that are fresh and unique. In addition, her message came aross clear as day without being preachy or extremely obvious. I won't spoil it for you, but I will say I related in so many ways to Miranda's fears and the lie she believes.
I would without a doubt recommend *Made to Last* to anyone who enjoys a clean romantic comedy with spunky characters and witty dialogue.
The publisher provided me with a promotional copy in exchange for my honest review.
If you buy one book this year ... make it this one
September 25, 2013
Melissa Tagg's debut novel, Made To Last is my year's top pick for sure.
This story was engaging. The best part for me was that it seemed the plot was resolving at the midway point through the book. At first you may think that sounds bad - predictable plot, blah, blah, blah. But it isn't bad. It was exciting that I thought I knew where we were going and how the ends would tie together but then I'd see the solid inches left of unread pages still in my right hand. It was enthralling!
Tagg's characters were fantastic. I loved getting inside Miranda and Matthew's frame of mind. They felt real and almost touchable. Usually my head is controlled by the characters of my own writings that roam around and rule the roost of my brain. I push them aside while I open a novel and then when I close the book, they come right back, front and center. However for the three or four days I poured into Made To Last my mind was fully and completely consumed with Melissa's characters. They tugged on my heart and teased my thoughts and perceptions. They truly came alive to me.
I can't wait to see what Melissa Tagg will do next!
"Oh what a tangled web we weave/When first we practise to deceive." Sir Walter Scott
Remember that cliche? The protagonist in this Christian contemporary romance, Miranda Woodruff, should have heeded it. She's the star of a reality TV show with a problem. The ratings are slipping, so to keep the interest of her fans, she's pretending to be happily married. To further complicate things, Miranda, "Randi," allows a reporter to shadow her for an entire week! Her dilemma is keeping him from finding out that the handsome guy "playing" her husband is really just pretend.
I appreciate a lighthearted read--a "sugar candy for the brain" book. Here is an interesting one with a happy ending.
Discussion questions are included.
Thank you to Bonnie at Christian Fiction Blog Alliance and Bethany House Publishers for my copy.