Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Blog Tour: Matchmaking for Beginners

You need to suspend your beliefs ever so slightly when reading Maddie Dawson's new novel, Matchmaking for Beginners. If you can do that, accept the magic of matchmaking, and open your heart to some quirky characters...well, you'll probably fall in love with this story or, at the very least, find yourself being charmed and entertained throughout.

Here's the synopsis:
Marnie MacGraw wants an ordinary life—a husband, kids, and a minivan in the suburbs. Now that she’s marrying the man of her dreams, she’s sure this is the life she’ll get. Then Marnie meets Blix Holliday, her fiancĂ©’s irascible matchmaking great-aunt who’s dying, and everything changes—just as Blix told her it would.
When her marriage ends after two miserable weeks, Marnie is understandably shocked. She’s even more astonished to find that she’s inherited Blix’s Brooklyn brownstone along with all of Blix’s unfinished “projects”: the heartbroken, oddball friends and neighbors running from happiness. Marnie doesn’t believe she’s anything special, but Blix somehow knew she was the perfect person to follow in her matchmaker footsteps.
And Blix was also right about some things Marnie must learn the hard way: love is hard to recognize, and the ones who push love away often are the ones who need it most.
This book was, in a word, delightful. It isn't perfect but it still found its way into my heart and my head. I found it hard to put down and would think about it when I was supposed to be busy doing other things. 

I loved Marnie. I felt like I really identified with her, even though I don't think we're that much alike. Maybe she's just one of those people that you can't help but be drawn to and want to be friends with. She's adorably unsure of herself and determined to get the life she thinks she wants. Problem is - that life isn't exactly what she needs. Blix knows what Marnie needs and works her particular brand of magic to make sure it works out - even once Blix is in the after-life. 

The magic I speak of isn't really magic. I wouldn't really call this book magic realism but there's a hint of supernatural in Blix and Marnie's matchmaking capabilities. Blix had a few "spells" she worked on people. It was like she could pass on love and good feelings to anyone she wanted to. Marnie saw sparkles when she was matchmaking and I kind of wished I could see them too. 

This book would not be what it is without the cast of supporting characters. They are the most eclectic bunch of wonderful oddballs and I loved them all. It was no wonder Blix and Marnie did too. Jessica was the perfect best friend for Marnie and I'm so glad they had each other. Sammy, Jessica's son, was too cute and my heart broke for him because he just wanted his parents to get back together. I loved reading as Marnie slowly - and awkwardly - brought Patrick out of his shell. And Lola, Blix's best friend, was a hoot. They really brought so much colour and life to the whole story and I had so much fun meeting all of them.

And that cover! I adored it. Though, if I have to find a fault, I'd say it's with the dog. He just doesn't fit. I was also very concerned there wouldn't even be a dog but, after finishing the book, I can see why he was put on the stoop with the couple. But I just love the colours and the art so much. 

If you're feeling down, Maddie Dawson's Matchmaking for Beginners is sure to bring a smile or three to your face. It was a quick read for me that was perfect for reading on the park bench on my lunch break.

Psst - I have some good news! Thomas Allen & Son is giving away a hardcover copy of Matchmaking for Beginners to a lucky Canadian reader. Fill out the Rafflecopter below and they'll notify the winner via email when the giveaway ends on July 13th at 11:59 pm EST. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About Maddie Dawson
Maddie Dawson grew up in the South, born into a family of outrageous storytellers. Her various careers as a substitute English teacher, department-store clerk, medical-records typist, waitress, cat sitter, wedding-invitation-company receptionist, nanny, day care worker, electrocardiogram technician, and Taco Bell taco maker were made bearable by thinking up stories as she worked. Today she lives in Guilford, Connecticut, with her husband. She’s the bestselling author of five previous novels: The Survivor’s Guide to Family Happiness, The Opposite of Maybe, The Stuff That Never Happened, Kissing Games of the World, and A Piece of Normal.

Follow Maddie
Website * Twitter * Facebook * Goodreads  

*A copy of this novel was provided by the distributor, Thomas Allan & Son, in exchange for a review for the purpose of a blog tour. All opinions are honest and my own.*

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