Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Man Test by Amanda Aksel [Book Review & Giveaway]

Contemporary Fiction, Chick Lit
Publication.Date  March 24th 2014
Published By:  Elephantine Publishing
WebsiteAmanda Aksel

The Man Test Goodreads
My review copy:I received a copy of this book from the author, in exchange for an honest review. 

                                     Where to get:

Marin Johns is San Francisco’s Pollyanna couples therapist. She’s months away from wedded bliss when she discovers her fiancé is having an affair. After nursing her broken heart with Kleenex and break-up songs, she adopts a new brand of thinking when she uncovers a tell-all book that proves all men are liars and cheaters who will do and say anything so they’re not found out. No exceptions.

In an attempt to convince her friends of her newfound truth, she begins a fictitious relationship with James, a do-gooder from Montana. Marin seeks any means necessary to catch him cheating from hiring a PI to enlisting the help of a fidelity tester. Will her new "boyfriend" beat the statistic or will Marin regret the satisfaction of being right?

Trust is a fragile thing. When it's been damaged it's hard to put it back together the way it was before. It's a lot of work, you know that. I nodded and she continued, The question is--is it worth it to you?
There I was with a bandage on my knew, an ice cream cone in my hand, and a handsome man of possibilities. What a crazy day.
I felt unsettled amongst all that joy. It seemed so fake in the light of the truth. Just an expensive party to keep up the appearance set down by society, while underneath was a terrible lie. I regretted not tackling Rachel on her way down the aisle and take her far, far away.
That wasn't me. It wasn't like me to pretend to be someone's girlfriend and play games to prove a point either. I was ashamed, an emotion I wasn't counting on to surface for my actions. Sure, I had my reasons, but even if they were good reasons did that make them right?
Fourth of July weekend was eye opening. Between my brother's affirmation, my family's positive reaction to James, and their new compassion toward me, I felt different, hopeful. Maybe there were good guys out there. If decent men existed, then James would definitely be one of them.

Such a Sweet Surprise! 

 I was expecting this novel to be just another chick lit book and was gearing myself up for a fluffy romance, with a dashing hero to save the day at the end. Boy was I wrong!

Marin Johns is a couple therapist and is in love with being in love. As the story opens, she is engaged to Chad. Marin then goes away on a long weekend with her girlfriends. Deciding to surprise Chad, she comes home early. Not the best of ideas I'm afraid. Chad is found in bed with another woman. Although he says he needed to get it out of his system, Marin is not buying it and throws him out. She soon begins her journey through utter and complete heartbreak. Her well meaning good friends Telly & Holly do everything they can to cheer her up. They even buy her a meditation book. Marin is not having it! She decides to go return the book as it hasn't helped her at all! While in the bookstore, Marin finds another book that catches her eye. Now this book is more like it! She quickly goes home and reads it cover to cover. What it says intrigues her and makes her feel better. All men, I mean 100% of them are cheats, liars and just plain horrible human beings. Yes that's right. There are literally NO faithful men, just men that are good at hiding it. Soon Marin decides to play a game and get a man to fall for her and then prove her theory to all her girlfriends too. Men just can't be trusted.

A humorous and well written book "The Man Test" was an absolute great read. It was a kick back kind of romance novel, that wasn't at all predictable. In fact, I honestly didn't know what would happen page to page in this book as Marin came up with wonderful ways to make the reader laugh, scream and cry along with her. Amanda Aksel does a great job at creating the characters. Marin is likable but also is the type of character you want to throw something at because you just can't believe how stupid she's being. I for one love these types of books. If I am not fired up, then the book is just not holding my interest well enough.

"The Man Test" is such a refreshing new look on how relationships go wrong and how even women (yes us too ladies) can go to extremes to mend our broken hearts. I would defiantly recommend you get your hands on this book. It was a great read! 

About the Author

Amanda Aksel is an author with an affinity for love. Becoming a couple’s therapist was her “backup” career, and after completing her BA in Psychology she was on her way to solving love's most complicated quandaries one couple at a time. The Man Test is Amanda’s debut novel, and now she plans to solve love's most complicated quandaries one novel at a time.


What you can win: One Lolita "Love My Martini" glass 7 ounces. Thanks Amanda! 

Ends: 4/24/2014

Open to:  US & International participants. Please no PO Boxes. 

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