The Shape of My Heart by Ann Aguirre
Series: Apartment 2B #3
Also in this series: I Want It That Way, As Long As You Love Me
Published by Harlequin
Publication Date: December 1st 2014
Genres: Fiction, Romance, New Adult, Coming of Age, Contemporary
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Some people wait decades to meet their soul mate. Courtney Kaufman suspects she met hers in high school—only to lose him at seventeen. Since then, Courtney's social life has been a series of meaningless encounters, though she's made a few close friends along the way. Especially her roommate, Max Cooper, who oozes damaged bad-boy vibes from every pore.
Max knows about feeling lost—he's been on his own since he was sixteen. Now it's time to find out if he can ever go home again, and Courtney's the only one he trusts to go with him. But the trip to Providence could change everything….
It started out so simple. One misfit helping another. Now Max will do anything to show Courtney that for every heart that's ever been broken, there's another that can make it complete.
Courtney and Max made out once or twice at various parties, but it didn’t go any farther than that. Which is good, since they end up roommates. When Max is called home to attend a funeral, he can’t face it alone and asks Courtney – who has become one of his best friends – to go with him.
Courtney has no problem helping Max out, especially since she’s never seen him so tense. Most people see Max as nothing more than a motorcycle-riding bad boy, but she knows he has hidden depth. Neither is prepared for how close they get during their trip, or how much their attraction for one another grows.
I love Max. I just need to put that out there right up front. He was such an awesome guy. He grew up on the wrong side of the tracks, but he did his best to pull himself out a bad situation. He was determined to make something of himself, and he wasn’t afraid to put himself out there. I wanted to wrap him up and put him in my pocket I loved him so much.
Courtney was also a great character. Her parents are very wealthy and she grew up with a lot of money, but she didn’t look at their money as hers. Yes, they were paying her way in college, but she didn’t consider their achievements her own. That was a big deal when it came to her mess up with Max. She didn’t tell him how wealthy her parents were, so he was blindsided when they went to visit for the first time. He felt, justifiably, angry that she’d kept something so huge from him. I might not have been able to forgive her for making him feel so bad about himself, if not for the fact that she just didn’t see their wealth as her own. Yes, they made money. No, that didn’t reflect on her at all.
Her views were a little ..let’s say sheltered, but Max was quick to point out what a princess she was being. And she was quick to accept responsibility for the way she was acting and to try to change her behavior. She was going to prove to Max she was worthy of him, which I thought was great considering she could have been a spoiled rich girl instead, trying to force him to come to her.
Her sorrow over the loss of her high school boyfriend, and her subsequent addiction to pain killers, was really well done. I actually felt her sorrow, and I thought her stint in rehab really shaped the person she became and the choices she made in her relationship with Max. She really grew over the course of the novel, and I ended up with a lot of respect for her.
Max is the reason I loved the book, though. He was a little self-conscious and hesitant about his feelings for Courtney at first, but once he was in, he was all in. He didn’t try to make her work for it, or hide what they had. He also didn’t let her get away with anything. When she was unsure about their relationship, he reassured her. When she pulled back or tried to use humor to cover her feelings, he called out. Max also did some growing over the course of the novel, but he had less to do in general. He was pretty darn perfect right from the start, to be honest. I just adored him.
The secondary characters were all wonderfully drawn. We saw the original roommates and the couples from previous books, plus a few new friends they made along the way. Max’s family made an appearance, and so did Courtney’s. Each added flavor to the story, rather than detracting from the main plot and characters.
Although there were times I wanted to beat some sense into Courtney, I can’t deny I was emotionally sucked in from beginning to end. I loved the two of them separately, and I really loved them together. I laughed, I cried, I wanted to scream in frustration and joy – this was a stellar read all the way around.
4.5 out of 5