Review: Faking It by Cora Carmack
Mackenzie “Max” Miller has a problem. Her parents have arrived in town for a surprise visit, and if they see her dyed hair, tattoos, and piercings, they just might disown her. Even worse, they’re expecting to meet a nice, wholesome boyfriend, not a guy named Mace who has a neck tattoo and plays in a band. All her lies are about to come crashing down around her, but then she meets Cade.
Cade moved to Philadelphia to act and to leave his problems behind in Texas. So far though, he’s kept the problems and had very little opportunity to take the stage. When Max approaches him in a coffee shop with a crazy request to pretend to be her boyfriend, he agrees to play the part. But when Cade plays the role a little too well, they’re forced to keep the ruse going. And the more they fake the relationship, the more real it begins to feel.
I am so grateful that I didn’t give up on Cora after reading Losing It because where I didn’t gel with that story, Faking It was like a breath of fresh air. You could see how the story became more fluid and personal as Cora developed her writing style and this story grew leaps and bounds in comparison. Either that. or I just really connected with Max and Cade…specifically Max.
I think every 20-something goes through this epic trial of self discovery once they leave the safety of their parents and college and Carmack poignantly captures that struggle of self-acceptance while battling with the ever present shadow of wanting parental acceptance. It is a fine line to balance and as a 20-something myself, I completely related to Max on this level. I find her struggle resonated with me on a deeper level and it had me cheering for her to get a happily-ever-after, as if to provide hope that some day maybe I will too.
Cade was swoony and perfect, just as he was in the Losing It. It was amazing to see him grow as a character, from shy and timid to sexy and confident. Another part of the story that resonated with me was the struggle of growing apart from people in college. It is a heartbreaking but true statement and Cora captures that sorrow and struggle that comes with the fact that you spent 4 years of your life with someone almost everyday only to part ways after the cap and gown are pulled off. It’s a harsh reality of the struggle to maintain fickle friendships, but also a reminder that some people are only meant to pass through your life, while others are apart of the journey for the long haul. This book just touched on so many post college struggles I find myself reflected in, and for that I will be forever grateful to Cora for knowing I am not alone.
“…Crying was for moments of such drastic pain that you had to let it out, had to shed the dead skin on your soul so that you could breathe…”
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