Omg, Max and Letty. I loved these two together. This was a really good installment in the series, and YOU GUYS, there’s only one book left after this one! How?! I feel like I’ve spent so much time in South Beach that I’m going to be really sad to say goodbye. But I’m getting ahead of myself! We still have Max and Letty to discuss.
In Night and Day, Letty Gonzalez is hired to be the temporary assistant to artist Max Delgado – she’s supposed to help him get his workshop/studio in order. But the way Max looks at her sets her skin on fire – he looks at her like he wants to devour her, like he wants to has never seen someone so beautiful. Which makes no sense to Letty, whose mother made her go to diet camps all throughout her childhood, who is constantly told that she’s too fat to be beautiful or to be taken seriously. In fact, her previous boyfriend recently dumped AND fired her because he was only in the relationship for her family’s money. So Letty is naturally skeptical of Max’s intentions. So skeptical that she has a hard time believing that he could ever truly be into someone like her.
Max Delgado doesn’t have a type, but as soon as Letty walks into his studio, he knows that she’s it. SHE is his type. He wants her immediately, and her image inspires the rest of his art for the upcoming showcase he’s part of. But Max didn’t have an easy upbringing. He’s got a lot of baggage, and he’s always pushed people away from him. He doesn’t want to be like his father, and he KNOWS how similar they are. Could Letty be the one to get through to him, to make him believe that he’s just as worthy of love as anyone else?
3 Things I Loved
- Letty. Letty is a different type of heroine than we usually see in romance in some ways, but also very typical in other ways. I think what I loved most about her was her growth throughout the book. It’s difficult to heal from being insulted for what you look like your entire life, but in this book, she really does. And that’s fun to read.
- Max. Max is tortured, but that’s what makes him sweet. I wouldn’t call him grumpy, per se… just tortured. It’s Max’s awareness that he has some of his father’s tendencies that make him not like his father at all, and that’s what Letty helps him realize.
- Their internal conflicts. So everyone has demons and obstacles to get through in romances, but I LOVED how REAL these ones were. They were like real life. I know a lot of people read to escape, but I appreciated that these were actual problems that a couple might have to work through, even if they weren’t wealthy Cubans in South Beach.
Content warning for this one – fat shaming. A fuck-ton of fat shaming. Not from Max! Never from Max. But from Letty’s mother, for one, and then in Letty’s internalized thoughts and monologues. If that’s a trigger for you, be careful with this one.
There’s also some talk of drug abuse, which is a carry-over from the previous book in the series, Before Daylight, where Max’s mother goes to rehab for her drug addiction. (Max is the brother of Laura in Before Daylight.)
I think that was the only thing that really bothered me – as someone who has had bouts of disordered eating in the past, it’s hard for me to read (or listen to) people who are obsessed with their weight and size. Letty was subjected to that her entire life, and that really sucks. She’s got a shitty mom.
Well, and it goes without saying that Max has a shitty dad. I don’t want to spend much time talking about what a manipulative shithead he is in this one, because I’m going to be diving into this damaging parenting in the final book of the series. But yeah, Max’s dad basically blackmails him into breaking up with Letty, and it almost ends things for real, but then they finally tell him how much of a shithead he is and he up and leaves. FINALLY. Uh, spoiler, I guess? Oops. But anyway, Max’s dad is also terrible.
A reminder of the rating scale:
- Red = DNF, I hated everything
- Orange = Ugh, no thank you
- Yellow = I mean, I’ve read worse, but there were problems
- Green = This was good!
- Blue = Oh my gosh, I loved this book!
- Purple = This is the unicorn of books and I will be rereading it until the binding falls apart and EVERYONE should be reading it!
I honestly felt similarly in this book as I did when I read Dusk Until Dawn – it was like the story wrapped up too quickly. I loved it, but I felt like the issues that Letty and Max had maybe weren’t able to be solved as quickly and as neatly as was done in the book. So I wish there had been a little bit more. So I’m giving Night and Day a GREEN rating. Really good, but a little too neat at the end.