Made To Last
by Melissa Tagg
Miranda Woodruff, star of the homebuilding show "From the
Ground Up," will do anything to keep the job she loves. Due to a painful broken
engagement and a faith she's mostly forgotten, she's let her entire identity
become wrapped up in the Miranda everyone sees onscreen. So when she
receives news that the network might cancel her program, she must do the very
thing she fears most: let the spotlight shine on her closely guarded personal
life. The only problem? She's been living a lie--letting viewers believe she's
married--and now she's called upon to play wife to a sweet, if a bit goofy,
Desperate to help his family and prove he's not a total failure, reporter
opportunity to do an online serial feature on Miranda Woodruff, he jumps at the
chance, even if celebrity reporting isn't really his thing. But as soon as he meets
When Miranda's former fiance suddenly appears on the scene again, she doubts
her life could get more complicated. Juggling three guys, an on-the-rocks
television show, and the potential exposure of her deception is way more than
she bargained for. Can the woman who makes things look so good onscreen
admit it's time to tell the truth about who she is? And if she does, will the life
Miranda's built come crashing down just as she's finally found a love to last?
Review by Shrimalya
Woah did I just read a debut novel?? Because it sure didn’t feel like
one.I loved the writing,characters and practically everything about this book.
Miranda “Randi” Woodruff is the star of the hit homebuilding television show
“From the Ground Up”. To her viewers she appears to be the successful, handy
TV show host who is happily married to an amazing husband who taught her
everything about woodwork and homebuilding.
But in reality she does not have a husband.She has never been married.Three
years ago her fiancé, Robbie abandoned her and only left a note.Since then
life has been very difficult for her and she has found it hard to move on.But
she has mentioned her “husband” in almost every episode in the past three
seasons.The audience and the media find this very endearing and are excited
by this mysterious husband. Her show is now in jeopardy as they don’t know
whether the network will pick up the next season.So her producer and manager
suggest a ruse.They’ll get her a fake husband and increase media attention
which in turn might help save the show.She will also be shadowed by a reporter
for three weeks who will write regular blog posts about her.
Bet you think that it might be the same old rom-com story—Two people pretend
to be married and eventually fall in love.But nope it doesn’t happen in this
book.And also there is no love square in this book.It is pretty clear who the
romantic interest is.
Matthew Knox is the reporter who has to write these pieces on Randi.Though he
doesn’t like writing fluff pieces, this time he is determined to prove himself to
Randi and Matthew were amazing main characters.It was wonderful
reading about how much passion Randi had for woodwork.She is such a
compassionate,loving and charitable character.She even builds houses for the
poor and helps out at a children’s shelter Open Arms where her best friend
Liv works.Even though she hated the fake marriage idea she was ready to do
it for her show.She also has abandonment issues. Her parents, who worked as
missionaries in Brazil, noticed that she wasn’t able to adjust in Brazil so she was
sent back to her grandparents.Her parents were kind of non-existent during her
childhood and she inherited her love for building from her grandfather.When
she goes back to Brazil to build houses she meets Robbie and falls in love with
him.But he also leaves her and the problem arises as her imaginary husband is
kind of based on him.
“Why was it that a person could forget a thousand moments over a lifetime
but never purge the one memory she truly wanted to forget?”
Matthew is a disgraced reporter who fell from great heights after wrongly
accusing his father of embezzlement in an article.But he has an amazing brother
Jase and sister-in-law Izzy along with a wonderful neice Celine.They don’t have
enough money required for Cee’s cochlear implant so he decides to do the piece
on Randi and tries to uncover her secrets.
Randi’s fake husband Blake or “Blaze” was a brilliant character. He starts off
as a goofy guy full of energy but soon becomes an important friend to Randi and
Matthew.He made me laugh so many times with his antics and jokes.It was really
sweet seeing Randi and Matthew’s relationship develop slowly.They started
off as wary friends but quickly began to trust each other as they shared their
secrets and burdens with each other.They had this ease between them which is
rare to find.
Though this book doesn’t come off as preachy it has many important messages
hidden in it.Do not think that it is a simple chick-lit!!
Both Randi and Matthew heal and learn to forgive.They accept their mistakes
and learn to move on.It was a beautiful experience to accompany them on their
journey of self-discovery.
“And it makes me think, what does God see in us that we don’t? That matters.
Because when all the stuff we’re hiding behind is stripped away, it’s what He sees
that’s left. So what does He see?His creation. Forgiven. Whole. Enough.”
All the secondary characters were pivotal to the novel.Randi’s manager Brad
and her best friend Liv helped her at every point.Cee was a beautiful angel.Even
the preacher’s wife Joni was important.I’m actually glad that Randi and Robbie’s
relationship hadn’t worked out because I think they might have ended up like
Audrey and Jimmy if she didn’t have the show.
In conclusion it was a wonderful book which went beyond my expectations and
managed to touch my heart.My only problem was the ending as I wish it had
been longer.It would have been more fulfilling to have an epilogue.Nevertheless
I am very excited to read Blaze’s story in Melissa’s next book Here to Stay.