To their friends, family and neighbors, Celine and Max Archer had a perfect marriage. Only the Archers knew they’d never been in love, and that nights of passion were few and far between. Still, both thought the other happy with the dry-eyed deal they’d made instead of vows.
Until Max broke the bargain—by wanting more. And suddenly, after twelve peaceful years, the perfect marriage was over.
But when Celine realized how much she loved her husband, was it too late to get him back? For unbeknownst to Max, they’d been blessed with a new beginning….
By no means this is my favorite book but I must admit i’m a sucker for angsty plot and interpersonal conflict, usually from the hero’s POV, so although this is not the best of books, it’s my go to book when I need something different.
I abhor cheating and I’d not tolerate it in real life but I do like reading about it in romance novels because it shows a different side of a relationship that most people tend to ignore or overlook because most readers tend to look for HEA. No one is perfect and reading about the imperfection of ones’ relationship or marriage make the book much more realistic than the typical clique of boy meets girl, falls in love, and HEA.
I’ve read this book at least 4 times and each time I feel differently about the two main characters. Obviously the majority of the times I was on the heroine’s side but there were moments when I although not totally agreed with the hero, I understand why he did the things he did. Max cheated on his wife with someone’s younger and wanted a divorce because he thought he was “in love”. Up to this point, the H & h are in a marriage of convenience, neither had confessed they love each other because they were both in love prior to their marriage and both were emotionally unavailable to try again. So Max packed up and left while Celine tried to move on with her life by having a makeover and be an independent woman. Max, however kept appearing back in her life for trivial matters and they slept again and the h found out she was pregnant. Celine led Max believed it was someone else’ baby but Max guessed it was his and by this time he has already decided to come back to Celine.
I think Max didn’t grovel enough. Sure she made him wait a few months before giving in to him but I think he didn’t do enough for her. Why didn’t he just admit to her it was a mistake with Kate and that the person he truly loves is Celine? Celine only learns about this when Kate dropped in for a visit. Max told Kate that Celine is cold and indifferent and did not really care when he left. When I consider that statement, I realized how accurate Max is because as a reader, I know how Celine is feeling but from Max’s pov, she never expressed her feelings, her desire, or her love for him. And the same goes for Max. For a couple who was married for 12 years and friends for longer, I don’t understand why these two can’t sort out their feelings.
In the end, I forgave Max despite the fact that he cheated on Celine all because he thought he was in love. We all did stupid and crazy things in the name of love and 9 out of 10 our hearts always win over our brain. I was never in the same situation but what if one day when we already attached to our significant others and suddenly we felt that spark, that butterfly feeling for someone else, what would we do?