Ah, another beauty by Mariana Zapata – this time is “The Best Thing” and you can check it out here.
And, yes, you guessed it – it’s another slow burn.
It’s a great second chance romance book where the characters go from one-time enemies to eventual lovers.
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And she’s at the top of her game in this one. She slowly – and masterfully – weaves the story line together infusing just enough detail so that you feel like you know the characters personally.
Their thoughts, feelings, routines, what drives them – all of it.
And for her critics this slow build up is their biggest criticism of her work. But for me I call it masterful.
The Best Thing Mariana Zapata Review
Lenny DeMaio lost the love of her life almost two years ago. He just picked up and left.
No word, messages, no returned calls or texts. Just one day gone.
And she’s spent years thinking about him and cursing him for how he left and the heartache he caused her.
Lenny DeMaio is the heroine in this story and she’s amazing.
She’s a super strong single mom. Literally and figuratively.
Lenny manages an MMA gym all while doing her best to raise her daughter Mo.
Oh, and she used to be a high level Judo Olympic athlete.
She’s got a quick wit, razor sharp sarcasm and is very confident in herself. She wasn’t afraid to really give it to her eventual love interest Jonah with a little name calling.
I really loved how Zapata detailed her relationship with her grandpa. For me, it really added an extra dimension to the story and I found it incredibly sweet. In fact, Lenny may have got her name calling abilities from her grandpa as he would continually call Jonah all kinds of names. Mostly names from the Twilight characters or the romance novels he reads!
Jonah on the other hand is kind of the opposite of Lenny.
He’s a little more of the strong quiet type. Considerate and yet not a push over, he’s a real down to earth kinda guy who won’t quit when the going gets rough. I loved how even though he was thoughtful and considerate, when the time came he wasn’t afraid to stand up and be the alpha and get it done.
And it’s kind of to be expected as he’s a rugby player after all. Apparently one of the best in the world.
There is a strong theme of family that’s woven throughout this story – as you probably guessed from my comment about Lenny and her grandpa – which is typical of Zapata. I, for one, think it really adds a wholesome element and detail to the story.
And the Critics Come Out
Now, this is where some of the critics and I differ.
Many of the critics feel that adding in the family element and taking some time to document relationships or how they are related is boring. Or as they put it “a waste of time.”
Some prefer not to have other characters noted and developed, but rather prefer the entire focus to be on the leading couple.
So I think it really comes down to preference on this one.
But for me, I find it’s something unique and really adds to a Zapata book. I mean, when you’re reading a Mariana Zapata book, you have to come to grips with the fact that it’s not going to be an action-packed, fast moving read.
It’s a slow burn romance.
Part of her magic is that she won’t be rushed and will take her time to flesh out details that many other authors would just gloss over.
I feel it really makes the completion and ending of the story that much better.
Some other critics have mentioned that they didn’t think Jonah’s excuse for being away was believable.
And I guess they may have a point on that one.
But for me, it’s not a huge deal.
There is, however, quite a plot twist lurking in the story that will really help you understand Lenny’s angst and frustration with Jonah having left. (I don’t want to give it away, so you’ll have to read the story here.)
And I really love how Mariana tied this story into her other one – Luna and the Lie – by giving us a quick update on how things are going with Luna and Rip.
It’s little touches like these that really add a lot to the story for me.
Conclusion – The Best Thing Mariana Zapata
I felt this was another winner.
That being said, there seem to be a few more haters out there for this particular book as they felt it was too slow.
But as I mentioned before, I felt it was great.
The Best Thing Mariana Zapata Pdf
Sometimes I find it nice to just plug in and listen to an audiobook. But in this case – or for any of Mariana Zapata’s work – I would highly recommend the digital ebook version to read.
There are just too many details that you can miss if you aren’t actively listening.
This is often a big problem with me as I can find myself drifting off and by the time I realize it, I’ve missed a big chunk of the story!
On the other hand, if you’d rather try something completely different, try reading our “What the Wind Knows by Amy Harmon Review”.