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Kissing Games of the World

3.93  ·  Rating details ·  2,600 ratings  ·  171 reviews
Warmhearted, insightful, funny and poignant, bestselling author, Maddie Dawson, takes the unfathomable ways of love and family, and celebrates [the joys of] the ordinary craziness of being human.

Devoted, creative single-mom Jamie McClintock’s world is thrown into chaos by the sudden death of Harris, her vibrant, elderly landlord. Not only does she mourn him terribly, but
Kindle Edition, 402 pages
Published February 10th 2017 by NYLA (first published 2008)
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Average rating 3.93  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,600 ratings  ·  171 reviews

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Apr 20, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book took me forever to read. Basically, I had trouble getting into it, but kept plodding along, reading a few pages every few days, anyway. I liked it at the start, and found the atypical family of four charming and interesting, but soon realized they were not the characters I'd get to keep for the rest of the novel. In comes Nate, whom I hate instantly. He is such a clueless, self centered, pushy, smarmy salesperson... I just didn't want him to be a main character of the book, or to be th ...more
Jun 27, 2018 rated it it was ok
Contrary to Matchmakers for Beginners, I was less taken with Dawson's Kissing Games of the World, which for starters, has a title I couldn't really understand. In this story, single-mom Jamie McClintock and single-dad Nate Goddard, who have nothing in common, find themselves crossing paths and living in the same house, if only for awhile. I will admit there were little nuggets of wisdom here and there, about parenthood and life in general, but I wasn't convinced. I thought the story could have u ...more
Dec 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Another good one by Maddie Dawson! I really enjoyed it.
Sandi Kahn Shelton is a pseudonym for Maddie Dawson, but I’m finding that hard to believe. I adore Dawson’s books. They SHINE! This one…not so much. It’s okay, no one’s perfect, especially when they were just starting out.
Mar 20, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
loved loved loved this book. sympathetic with the single parent struggles, liked the storylines. empathetic characters. good good.
Mar 31, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Book that has you thinking

This isn’t a typical happy ever after story. The depths of the characters and their various struggles were real. Jamie was a woman who may have been a artistic hippie, but deep down she has strong moral codes. She didn’t look for man to take care of her. She had a friendship with an older man who was raising his grandson on his own just like she was raising her son on her own.

Harris’s long time friend Cooksey didn’t like Jamie but I think it was more because the woman
Feb 06, 2010 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: adult, romance
The Kissing Games of the World was an impulse buy at Target earlier this week. One of those, 'hmmmm, this looks decent' kind of days. I get most of my books via, which I highly suggest checking it out if you've not heard of it. Anyhow, so the book was very good. A very mild type of drama I was looking for. It was more about Jamie and Nate finding themselves than finding each other. Oh they "collided" a few times, and it was wonderful and beautiful, but what was more important wa ...more
Sandra Hutchison
I really enjoyed this book, as I've enjoyed all Maddie Dawson novels, but the hero is not necessarily a person I want for the heroine when it comes right down to it. I was rooting for each of them, and I suppose also for both of them together, but I felt like I was being manipulated into that a bit. The angst sure got some major development. If I were the MC's friend in real life, I'd probably say RUN, girl! Still, I didn't want to put it down and read it in two days. Also, please note that the ...more
Jan 02, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I cannot think of a moment in this book that I would change, where I was bored or critical. The characters were just so well drawn. I loved the characters and would love to know what they are doing know. The climatic ending was a bit abrupt, but my that is tied to my desire to not let the characters go.
Jan 27, 2009 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book would have gotten a solid 4 1/2 stars if not for the language. Upon reading the first few pages, I realized how long it had been since I had read a book by an author who knew how to write. Shelton KNOWS how to write and create a story. She understands characters. Although it was definitely a romance, it was also a study on how our pasts mold our future decisions.
Mar 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have read all of Sandi's books, and this was my favorite. I didn't want to leave these characters -- I want to know how they make out -- will they be able to make it all work? Very enjoyable read! ...more
Mar 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
This is well written and warmly done. Everyone learns something about themselves and their world by the end of this book. Almost everyone has personal growth, even the jerks. It is sweet, sad, funny, and romantic at the same time.
Batsheva Goldstein
Jan 31, 2019 rated it really liked it
Great story line

I really liked the characters of this book. They were complex and had to learn how to be better people . The kids are the best part . It's a book that makes you laugh and cry for the pain the adults are going through.
Nov 30, 2008 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Can't remember why I wrote this down but it must have sounded intriguing! ...more
Nov 30, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was entertaining, but sort of a romance novel with some literary pretensions.
Dec 12, 2008 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A nice read. Nothing heavy here, but a very enjoyable read with well drawn characters.
Jan 20, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: still-owned
I loved this book. The characters are written with such depth that they felt like real people. The author crafted the personalities so well, I couldn't put the book down. ...more
Feb 03, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A fun easy read about a single mom living with an older man who dies and the chaos and love that ensues
Feb 12, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great romance. Believable characters, very enjoyable.
Julie Ritenour
Feb 27, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: chicklit, library, 2009, more
I picked this up based on the cover and the title. The characters and story drew me in from the very beginning. I'll definitely look for more by this author ...more
Mar 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Title and cover are a little misleading - this is another wonderful human story from Sandi Kahn Shelton
Oct 31, 2019 rated it did not like it
Dragged on

The premise sounded interesting. The title was interesting and implied a lot of travels. But this book was SO boring and so long. Every character was so awful. Jamie was literally a pain in the ass. WHO DRESSES THEIR CHILD IN CROCHET VESTS? Who goes around living in the world WITH A CHILD without a real job or any real income? How does she truly just expect her sister to pay her way through life for both her and her child? Nate was a psycho with no emotional capability. Tina was just a
Diane D White
Jun 17, 2018 rated it liked it
I'll Explain The Math

For the longest time while trudging through Dawson's disappointingly predictable tale, my rating was a 2. I mean, once Harris died and Nate showed up, this book's ending was clear as day, and Dawson chose to let us intuit this only a few pages into her relatively long novel.

That came too soon, in my opinion. She hadn't made me care enough yet about these people for enthusiasm to propel my long and winding walk towards an unsurprising destination. I really only kept reading
Vero Nica
Jan 10, 2021 rated it really liked it
I began reading Maddie's books a couple of years ago. My first book took me through the thoughts of someone who was a little lost and they were eventually found. At that moment I was hooked. The characters in her books aren't perfect. Most have something they're working through. And that's exactly what I loved about this book.

Nate isn't perfect. He wasn't taught how to process his feelings and when shit hit the fan in his life he chose to dive into something else in order to forget. Adulting is
Melissa Dinwiddie
Aug 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Quite a character arc!

Harris screwed up his family, walking out on his wife and son, Nate. A known womanizer about town, he ruined his son’s life. And yet when that same son becomes a widower when Harris’s grandson, Christopher, is only 5 days old, it’s Harris who raises the boy, making up with Christopher for his sins with Nate.

Now, 5 years later, a young mom, Jamie, is boarding in Harris’s house. She doesn’t have the context that a Nate does, and loves Harris as a good friend and father-figure
Kay Bee
Sep 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
I really enjoyed this book, the story line started off right away. I hate when books start off super slow and take forever to get to the point, but this one, everything just took off. At times, I did not like Nate's character, and Jaime was too indecisive to me, but she was overall a really great mom. I didn't realize how much i was enjoying this book until I was about halfway through and I didn't want to put it down at 3am! The only reason I took off a star was because Jaime's sister kind of an ...more
Jul 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing
LOVE Maddie Dawson! This was her first book and i read her most recent book "Match Making for Beginners" first. I think maybe this one started a bit slow, but maybe that's only by comparison.

Maddie, I call her Maddie, really knows how to develop her characters and make you feel like you know them. Only Steven (King) and now Maddie seem to know how to do this to the max. She really knows how to build empathy between the reader and the characters. Even the ones who aren't so hot or nice or lovely.
Geri Mauriello
Jun 22, 2018 rated it liked it
So nice to read something uplifting. I've been a" mystery" reader since 7th grade and was given my first Nancy Drew but I have become so tired and so sickened that every thriller out there is about a women teen or child chained to the floor bed or wall. Where is your imagination writers. A true mystery who done it ? And until that starts to change, and stay up all night trying to solve the mystery books are being written again , I will continue to read books by the Maddie Dawson's of the literar ...more
sharon mason
Jan 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Good story, strange title

Maddie Dawson writes a good story with well built characters that have a likability even though flawed personally. Nate is both of these things, an excellent salesman but kinda messed up inside where all his feelings are hidden. Especially from himself. All he knows is that he's angry as hell. His outside personality is well doused in humor and charm. And then he meets his five year old son and everything changes. Christopher, his best bud Arley and Jamie, Arley's mom ar
Caitland Orlicz
Jul 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
Fun, easy read that would make a relatively decent (maybe slightly depressing) romcom

I read another of Maddie Dawson’s books and liked her writing style so decided to give this one a shot. I loved the characters overall, thought they were well-developed (though Nate might have been a bit too over the top in his introduction). It was a quick, easy read, but I felt like the ending was rushed. I had maybe 40 pages to go thinking “How is this possibly going to end in 40 pages?” I think it was a bit
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