Blog Tour: Road to Wonderland by HA Robinson
Blog Tour 1st September – 5th September
Day 4 features Max Colton
Book: Max Colton's Road to Wonderland
Author: HA Robinson
Genre: New Adult
Growing up with certain expectations and your entire life mapped out for you is never easy, but when the bar is set impossibly high, most would give up.
Not Max Colton.
Even as a child, his father is unrelenting. Discipline, rules and rigid control are all he knows. Nothing Max does is good enough, and no matter how hard he works, approval and recognition are always just out of reach.
From boarding school to university, Max gets a glimpse of the freedom he’s always been denied, and learns unexpected things about himself along the way. When he somehow finds himself thrust back under his father’s iron rod of control, that freedom proves harder to let go of than he anticipated and he finds himself caught in a balancing act between his lifelong battle for his father’s approval and living out his own hopes and dreams.
With loves found and lost and his friends at his side, Max has to navigate through the world one step at a time. People aren’t always as they seem, and every stone unturned reveals a new challenge, bringing him closer to a future that has always seemed elusive and uncertain.
A future that holds success, freedom and love he never expected to have.
A future that will offer loyal friends and a home that isn’t confined to a building.
A future that leads him to Wonderland.
H. A. Robinson is a jet-setting billionaire with a home on each continent, who spends her free time saving kittens from trees and babies from burning buildings. A graduate of Hogwarts and a frequent visitor to Narnia, she drinks coffee in Central Perk and tames dragons in Westeros.
In her dreams…
In reality, she’s a support worker living in a small town in Cheshire, who would almost always choose fantasy over reality. She’s been an obsessive reader from the moment she picked up her first Enid Blyton book, more years ago than she cares to admit, and enjoys nothing more than getting lost in new worlds and adventures from the minds of all the amazing authors out there.
She’s had the voices of characters in her head for as long as she can remember, and puts them down on paper in order to convince herself and the men in white coats that she isn’t crazy.
The Road to Wonderland Series Available as ebooks and paperbacks
The Road to Wonderland Series:
Max @ Amazon UK Releases 16th October
Izzy Moffit interviews Max Colton
There aren’t many people I’m completely comfortable with, but my old friend from my temping days, Mr. Max Colton, is most definitely one of those people. I knew the second I pulled his name out of the hat that I was going to have some fun with this, while Max will probably have been groaning the second he saw who he got. That boy loves to tug that hair of his.
With my legs crossed, and my clipboard positioned carefully on my knee, I’m sitting here waiting for him to walk through the door so I can get this interrogation underway. I decided that the more serious I tried to look when he walked in, the more twitchy it might make him. *evil cackles*
When the door swings open with ease and one of my best friends walks through, it’s hard not to give him my usual cheesy grin and throw my arms around him, but I somehow manage to school my face and point to the chair in front of me.
Moffy: Good evening, Mr. Colton. Thank you for showing up… finally. Take your seat and I’ll get my assistant to hook you up to the lie detector we have brought in especially for you.
Max: *Wanders into the room, expecting a cosy chat with my friend, perhaps with a couple of beers and obviously some nachos, and freezes at her serious expression, groaning.* Wait a minute… If the Wonderland budget stretches to lie detectors, when are we getting that dedicated Reese’s fridge I’ve been putting in the suggestion box for the last two years?!
Moffy: *leans forward, lowering voice* Dude, that thing will cost hundreds. Do you know how easy it is for me to get a lie detector from the right people? Paris offers them a quick blowie and bish, bash, bosh, the tech geeks fold. *winks and laughs, sitting up right* You have shaved your balls, haven’t you? That’s where they say we can get the best readings from… apparently it’s sensitive to mood changes down there. *grins*
Max: *Flops down into the chair she gestured to before, rolling my eyes and cracking my knuckles to keep my hands away from my hair. Izzy is like one of those rottweilers. She can tell when you’re nervous.* I prefer not to think about Paris doing sexual favours for random strangers, but thanks for the visual. *Snorts* And if you wanted to see my balls, darlin’, all you had to do was ask. *Smirks and shuffles forward in the seat.*
Moffy: No, thanks. Balls give me the heebies after I’ve just eaten. I wouldn’t want my sweet and sour pork balls to bear any kind of similarities. I’d be put off for life and I love that shit too much. *clears throat and taps pen on clipboard, offering him a beaming smile* Shall we get started? Do you want me to sound like Parkinson or Oprah? Jeremy Kyle is out. I don’t feel like shouting today.
Max: *Chuckles and rubs my palms against my trousers before attempting to relax back into the chair.* Thank God for that. I bloody hate that Kyle programme. Can you do a decent Ellen DeGeneres? I reckon I could live with being interviewed by her.
Moffy: I’ll give it my best shot. I love Ellen! Okay, so my first question, if I’m going to try be like Ellen, that is… What’s your best dance move to woo the ladies and can we see it?
Max: *Laughs and pushes out of the seat, opening my arms and curling my fingers* I’ll need a partner.
Moffy: That I can do. *laughs with him, jumping up* You can answer my questions while you show me your moves. Show me what you got, Colton. Then tell me, who was the first girl you ever wanted to really dance with but never got the chance to. Is there a mystery lady out there that has slipped through your fingers before now? A charming man like yourself has surely had a lot of women banging your door down.
Max: *Shakes head, laughing and pulling her into my arms in my best imitation of a decent dancing pose* Well, I’m no Fred Astaire, but I’m sure you know that by now. You’ve seen me drunk dancing enough times at this point. There have certainly been times when I would’ve quite liked to be a lot more suave and sophisticated than I am. *Starts to move us to some imaginary music, spinning her out then twirling her under my arm before pulling her back into my chest* There was a lass once, when I was a teenager who I was about as head over heels for as it’s possible to be at that age. In my head I wined, dined and danced the night away with her a thousand times, but in reality, I was a totally awkward, lanky fifteen-year-old, who had absolutely no idea how to act around girls. Sooooo… The dancing never quite happened there. *Dips her over my arm with a Hollywood flourish and laughs* Think yourself lucky I haven’t stepped on your toes yet.
Moffy: *talks upside down, staring up at the ceiling, voice all strained* Bloody nora, dude. You’ve got moves. I was expecting us to MC Hammer. *lifts head and chuckles* You better have brought beer for this thirsty work. Second question. *pulls self up against him and tries to look a little more serious while still holding his hand* Do you ever wish you’d been born into a world where money wasn’t the route of every man’s dream? Or do you think money can make you happy?
Max: *Raises eyebrows and squeezes her hand before waving my arm to her chair and leaning down the side of my own seat to produce two Coronas* I always come prepared. You should know this by now. *Grins* That’s a good question. I absolutely do not believe that money can make a person happy. My father is one of the richest men I know and I think I’ve seen him crack a smile maybe twice in my lifetime. Money can make you comfortable in the most basic and physical of ways, but it can’t give you that same warm feeling inside that a great hug with a good friend or a 5-0 win over Liverpool can give you. *Smirks* I would love to live in a world where the currency was kindness and not money.
Moffy: *takes a beer off him and nods slowly* I think that’s a good answer. Obviously I’m ignoring the Liverpool bit. I don’t want this to turn into one of those interviews. *laughs and gets comfy in chair again* Speaking of your father. It’s no secret that you’ve had your fair share of challenges with that man, and I know more than anyone just how much you dislike him. I also know what it feels like to despise someone you’re naturally meant to love. How do you think his downfalls and his errors in life have shaped you for the better? And is there any side of you that we haven’t seen that you sometimes think you get from him? I mean… even the nicest of us have those dark sides, right? I know I do.
Max: *Groans and scrubs my face with my hands then peeks up at her and gives her the stink eye* I knew I’d regret mentioning him… I wouldn’t like to say exactly how his parenting has shaped me. I have no idea who I’d be now if I’d been brought up differently. I don’t even know if I’d call his actions “errors” or not. I’m not a parent and I have no idea what I’d do in his position. I can tell you that the way he behaved towards me was the driving force behind how hard I worked at school. His has always been the voice in my head, spurring me on to do better and be better. As unhealthy as that might be for a child, I probably wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for that desperate need to make him proud. I also think that in some ways, the lack of any sort of affection from him, far from toughening me up the way he thought it would, has made me softer towards others. I could never live with myself if I ever made another person feel the way he so often made me feel as a child. Whether or not that’s for the better, I wouldn’t like to say. *Smiles*
As for the second part of the question, I think you’re right. We all have our dark moments. There have certainly been times in my life when I’ve dealt with a person or a situation that bothered me in a way that I’ve regretted afterwards. I’m not sure I always have the patience I ought to have with people. I suspect that may have come from his genes because it certainly didn’t come from my mother. *Twitches fingers against the arm of the chair* Does that answer the question?
Moffy: Yes, I think so. How much are you hating me right now? *grins*
Max: I don’t think I could ever actually hate you… And I pretty much knew when I walked in here that he’d come up at some point. *Winks* I know you reasonably well after all, and you know perfectly well that I can’t refuse to talk to you in an interview. *Mutters* Sadist!
Moffy: Oh, I know all about your guilt chip, Maximoose. It’s almost as big as mine. *pokes tongue out and looks down at the clipboard, running my pen down it as I glance over the questions I’d scribbled down* Hmm, where shall we go now. To seriousville again or to laughter town? *glances up and tilts head* I think I’ll stick with the harder questions for now. Like… how do you think you will feel the day your sweet little mother finds out that you like to strike a belt across a woman’s tushy cheeks? *chuckles*
Max: *Hisses at her and frantically darts my eyes around the room* Dude, that is NEVER gonna happen. Right? *Tugs on hair and scrunches eyes up* I think I’d die on the spot if she ever found out. I’d literally just melt like that witch in that film with the talking scarecrow n shit. I’m pretty sure the entire planet would just cease to spin. Seriously. It just can’t happen. Ever. *Shakes head and groans*
Moffy: *sucks in a breath and pretends to cross something out from my list* Well that’s my conference call with Speilberg cancelled then. No big screen for Maximoose’s Road to Wonderland. *grins* I’m being serious, though. Isn’t there a side of you that’s always scared while living that particular lifestyle? Not because there’s anything wrong with it, but just because you are you. We’re not too dissimilar in that we both hate it when people think badly of us. How do you separate those two parts of your life?
Max: If by scared you mean absolutely terrified, then yes. Every day. I came to terms with that particular part of my… personality, shall we say, a long time ago. I had an extremely good friend who helped me to understand that just because something isn’t strictly mainstream doesn’t make it wrong. But there are always going to be people who will judge you for things they perceive as different. Unfortunately it’s human nature to be weirded out or disgusted by things we don’t understand or necessarily agree with. All I can do is be careful who I trust, which I haven’t always been in the past. Life is just one big learning curve and as long as I surround myself with people who accept me for who I am, flaws and all, I tend not to worry about it too much. The only person in the world I’d probably want to know about it even less than my mum already *makes air quotes* “discovered” my… uh… leanings… I don’t know if anybody else could react any worse. As far as separating the two parts of my life goes, those I trust entirely know about it, (with the exception of my mother) and those I don’t trust have no need to know anything about it. *Shrugs* It’s easy really. Compartmentalisation, I guess.
Moffy: Sounds to me like you’ve finally got it all figured out, and that makes me happier than a pig in shit for you. *tosses the clipboard to the side and leans back in the chair, relaxing a little more and blowing out a breath* Okay, hard stuff done. You ready for the lighter questions? I promise not to mention your mother and a flogger in the same sentence again.
Max: Lighter questions sound fantastic. *Slurps on my beer* And I swear to you, if you ever do mention them in the same sentence again, that flogger will become very much a part of your reality. *Winks*
Moffy: Don’t make me safeword already. *chuckles* What’s the most unusual place you’ve ever had sex?
Max: Fucking hell, Izzy! Maybe I’ll go back to the tough questions after all. You’re like my little sister. Do you really wanna ask that shit?! *Laughs*
Moffy: Of course I do! Every fake little sister wants to know what their much older, much uglier brother does for kicks. *holds hands up, laughing* I’m joking. I’m joking. Just answer the question, Colton. Nothing to be embarrassed about here. It’s just little old me.
Max: Well… I generally prefer not to mention this particular woman, due to the fact that her mere name makes me want to vomit, but I did take her to Alton Towers once, and… Well, the river rapids is a fun ride, isn’t it? *Grins*
Moffy: It bloody wasn’t when I was there. Some little shit on the sidelines shot me in the eye with a water jet and nearly sent me into the bloody river! *laughs* But niiiiiiice work. That’s insane. Next question. Have you ever had a man crush, famous or otherwise?
Max: Hmm… I don’t think I have, really. Although, you’ve met my mate, Aeron, right? He’s a handsome bastard who can do frightening things with that flogger of his. I could watch that shit all day, but if he ever tried to do it to me, I’d probably run a fucking mile.
Moffy: I haven’t met him. All these years we’ve been friends and you kept us apart. Probably because you know of my tolerance for those slappy things, right? Haha. Moving on. What’s the one thing you wish for all your friends to have?
Max: *Grins* I can introduce you if you like. I’m faaaaairly confident he can be a gentleman. Though I wouldn’t like to put money on that… The one thing I’d one hundred percent wish for my friends to have is happiness. In whatever way that comes. Whether it’s love or a great job, whether it’s spending their days slaving away in a job they love or it’s white picket fences and grandbabies. I want my friends to be the happiest they can be, doing whatever it is that they love. Unless what they love is drowning puppies or something… I’m not sure I can get behind that. *Laughs*
Moffy: You really are a diamond, aren’t you? *tilts head to side* Ready for your final question?
Max: That depends… It’s not about my sex life, is it? *Quirks an eyebrow at her*
Moffy: There’s only one way to find out. *grins*
Max: *Scrunches eyes tightly shut and waves hand in the air* Fine. Hit me. Not literally… If possible. *Laughs*
Moffy: *chuckles and leans forward, clasping hands between legs, letting my hair fall forward as I look up at him* What does Max wish for Max to have? Besides a share in MUFC or anything to do with peanut butter. What’s your greatest wish for you?
Max: Hmm… *Eyes widen as I suck in a breath between my teeth* That’s a difficult question. If I close my eyes and dream about one thing, it would be acceptance. I guess it’s the one elusive thing I’ve spent my entire life looking for. *Shrugs* Is that an answer?
Moffy: I think it’s a perfectly acceptable answer. One I can relate to, too. But you should know one thing, buddy...
Max: I like to think I know more than one thing… *Grins*
Moffy: You’re a man. Let’s not get ahead of ourselves here. *laughs and jumps off the chair, bouncing over to him before landing on his lap and ruffling his hair just to annoy him* I accept you, Maximoose, and I couldn’t imagine life without you.
Max: *Chuckles, gripping her wrists in my hands and trapping them behind her while smothering her in a big bear hug* Well, that’s a relief, because you’re stuck with me now. I kinda love you n all that gooey big brother stuff. *Grins and drops a sloppy smooch on her cheek* Now then… About that Reese’s fridge…