Why Fans of the HEA Will LOVE Kissing Max Holden!
As a romance reader, I adore a happily ever after.
As a young adult romance reader, I prefer a happily ever now.
Most of my favorite books follow protagonists who are teenagers. I like to see them resolve their problems in satisfying and hopeful ways, but I also appreciate when authors are real about what it’s like to be seventeen and in love. The feelings are intense and often all encompassing, but it’s not uncommon for them to fade over time. Most of us don’t end up spending our whole lives with our high school sweethearts, which is why a lot of my favorite YA romances end with the protagonist and her love interest together and happy and fulfilled, but perhaps not promising each other forever.
While drafting Kissing Max Holden, I thought a lot about how to best conclude the story. My main characters, Jill and Max, are longtime friends, but the beginning of their romance is admittedly messy, and even after they manage to get together, their relationship isn’t easy. It didn’t seem right to close their story with the two of them swearing to love each other forever; it seemed… too simple?
But that doesn’t mean I didn’t want Jill and Max’s commitment to shine brightly. Because romance novels, by definition, end with the couple together and generally content, I don’t think it’s a spoiler to tell you that at one point toward the conclusion of Kissing Max Holden, Max tells Jill, “I want to be with you, now and next year and after, for as long as we’re happy,” and that line… that line felt right. It’s reflective of Max’s growth and shows how deeply he cares for Jill, but it’s sensible, too. And Jill’s a girl who appreciates sensible, especially at the end of her character’s arc.
So if you — like me — love a good romance novel, one with a conclusion that’s satisfying and full of promise, whether it speaks of forever or not, consider giving Kissing Max Holden a read when it debuts tomorrow, August 1st.
Thanks so much to the ladies of Tales of a Ravenous Reader for having me.
Kissing Max Holden
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: August 1st 2017
Genres: Contemporary, Romance, Young Adult
Kissing Max Holden was a terrible idea…
After his father has a life-altering stroke, Max Holden isn’t himself. As his long-time friend, Jillian Eldridge only wants to help him, but she doesn’t know how. When Max climbs through her window one night, Jill knows that she shouldn’t let him kiss her. But she can’t resist, and when they’re caught in the act by her dad, Jill swears it’ll never happen again. Because kissing Max Holden is a terrible idea.
With a new baby sibling on the way, her parents fighting all the time, and her dream of culinary school up in the air, Jill starts spending more and more time with Max. And even though her father disapproves and Max still has a girlfriend, not kissing Max is easier said than done. Will Jill follow her heart and allow their friendship to blossom into something more, or will she listen to her head and stop kissing Max Holden once and for all?
Katy Upperman is a graduate of Washington State University, a former elementary school teacher, and an insatiable reader. When not writing for young adults, Katy can be found whipping up batches of chocolate chip cookies, or exploring the country with her husband and daughter. Kissing Max Holden is her debut novel.