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Saturday, May 25, 2013

Maverick Review

I have to say one thing about Anna Cruise before we get down to business in this review; Anna Cruise definitely proves the point, once a Southern Californian, always a Southern California.  What does this mean you might be asking, well let me tell you.  If you've ever seen the skit on SNL, "The Californians" which is completely stereotypes the SoCal way of life, and you're not from Southern California you might not get it.  BUT, if you're from Socal you think it's probably the funniest thing in the world.  The Southern California lifestyle is like a club, and once you're in, you're in it for life.  Seriously... you can't escape it, and you really don't want to.  Anyway, back to how I am relating this to Anna Cruise and her book Maverick, Cruise captures the south of LA vibe so well, and being from where Maverick takes place, I can vouch for the validity of the setting of this book, which made it all the more awesome for me.  And, made me crave a burrito.  Seriously.  If you like Mexican food be prepared... 

Kellen Handler is in deep.

Ever since he can remember, he’s wanted to be a professional surfer. And he made it, rising to the top of the ranks, traveling the world and riding every break he’s ever dreamed of. His good looks and reputation for living on the edge—both in and out of the water—have made him an international superstar. But when his best friend dies in a tragic accident, Kellen wipes out big time, spiraling so badly that everything he’s worked for starts to disintegrate.

Tour officials scramble to do damage control and demand he work with a public relations company to clean up his bad boy image. It doesn't help that the person assigned to him, Gina Bellori, has her own demons associated with the surfing world.

Against her better judgement Gina accepts the job and concentrates on repairing Kellen's tattered reputation, despite his protests and despite the pain it causes her. With her past colliding with her present—and Kellen in the thick of it—she begins to realize that some secrets can't stay hidden.

And suddenly, Kellen Handler is no longer worried about losing his career.

He's more worried about losing his heart.

Review:  Summer is fast approaching, and look no further people.  Maverick is a definite must for the beach/lake/sun/wherever you go to hang out.  Kellen Handler is not an admirable character at the beginning of Maverick.  I mean this in the nicest way.  He's one of those characters that you know is just hurting so badly, and expressing it in all the wrong ways.  Mainly alcohol and women. 

I think Cruise's expedition into a male character's point of view was very well done.  The separation between Kellen and Gina was distinct, and Kellen's voice was distinctly male. I also really like the fact that Kellen isn't really a "bad boy" and Gina isn't the angel who's supposed to turn him straight.  

Cruise gives us two realistic individuals, with very real and pertinent issues that can easily mess anyone up.  I'll admit that I didn't really see what was in Gina's back story coming.  I was hoping that Anna wouldn't go there, but SHE DID.  And it makes Maverick so much better for going to that uncomfortable place.  

Maverick isn't a slow read.  It moves really fast, spanning over a few months.  At a few parts it did feel slightly rushed, and I felt that Gina might not have gotten everything hashed out with her back story.  

As far as the story between Kellen and her, I really, really enjoyed it.  Gina was the calm to his storm, if you will.  She didn't take crap from him, and he honestly tried to not give her crap and just do what she told him to.  It was refreshing not to see a relationship that was threatened by jealousy and domination.  

Maverick is a great read set in the back drop of the surfing world.  While I was expecting the surfing to kind of take center stage of the book. I was pleasantly surprised that Maverick is more character driven than anything else.  And, if you read this blog semi-frequently, character driven plots are my kryptonite, and Anna Cruise definitely has a fan in me for this one. 

Maverick is a whirlwind of good characters and great setting.  If you're looking for a great Summer read, look no further.  Maverick is it for you.  Anna Cruise has captured a vivid story in a laid back setting.  This one is sure to be a very popular Summer read. 

4.5/5 Oh Yeah I liked it a lot!

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