I really liked almost everything in this book. I loved the Turner family - the whole crazy lot of them. I loved Maxine and Ryan. Maxine is a sweet, innocent woman in a family full of craziness. She moves out on her own into her grandmother's old house and strange things begin to happen.
Enter Ryan, who was consulting with her on a website, and then became her security consultant. Ryan was a military guy who quit to take care of his younger brother, who suffered a brain injury in the car accident that took his mother's life.
I loved the dynamics between Maxine and Ryan, and was happy to see her grow more independent, even as Ryan tried to protect her but realized he had to let her make some mistakes on her own.
They were hot together, and their love and attraction were lovely to witness.
I really liked the part that their families played in the book - Ryan's commitment to a brother he never really knew but now feels responsible for, along with his growing feelings of love for his half-brother. And Maxy, who adores her twin brother, and loves her big crazy family. Watching Max take Carl under her wing, and choose to love him for who he was made me sniffle. And Ryan, who tried so hard not to put his burdens on her, realized that she could handle it.
They grew together and I really like that.
What I didn't care for so much, even though it fit a bit with her personality, was Max burying her head in the sand at all the strange goings on. After a while, it's time to stop blaming kids for the malicious vandalism and start realizing that it's aimed at you, and you need to be careful. But it took several incidents before she was willing to consider something else might be going on. It fit with her naivete and innate trust of people, but smacked of TSTL. Thankfully, she never really heaved herself over the line, because she never really put herself in a position of danger, but still. Get a clue, girl!
Aside from that one issue, I really really loved the book. I don't understand why this one comes first in the duo, because it takes place a year or so after book 2. However, because I read this one first, it fdidn't detract from this story at all.
(I know this is a rambling review, and I really, really need to stop writing reviews late at night for obvious reasons. Hopefully, you get the picture, LOL)