By Christina Lauren
Rating: 3/5 Genre: Contemporary Romance Steam: Explicit-ish? Publisher: Gallery Books Pub Date: 14 May, 2019 Available: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookShop
The Unhoneymooners Synopsis:
Olive Torres is used to being the unlucky twin: from inexplicable mishaps to a recent layoff, her life seems to be almost comically jinxed. By contrast, her sister Ami is an eternal champion…she even managed to finance her entire wedding by winning a slew of contests. Unfortunately for Olive, the only thing worse than constant bad luck is having to spend the wedding day with the best man (and her nemesis), Ethan Thomas.
Olive braces herself for wedding hell, determined to put on a brave face, but when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning, the only people who aren’t affected are Olive and Ethan. Suddenly there’s a free honeymoon up for grabs, and Olive will be damned if Ethan gets to enjoy paradise solo.
Agreeing to a temporary truce, the pair head for Maui. After all, ten days of bliss is worth having to assume the role of loving newlyweds, right? But the weird thing is…Olive doesn’t mind playing pretend. In fact, the more she pretends to be the luckiest woman alive, the more it feels like she might be.
The Unhoneymooners Review:
I kinda picked up this book because of the cover. It’s so pretty! Overall it was a decent read. Olive and Ethan are likable characters that are well developed with their own problems. I loved the dynamics between Olive and her sister and Ethan and his brother. I felt like they were real relationships. The setting is to die for: Hawaii?!? Plus the whole premise of winning a honeymoon and the consequential faking of a relationship was fabulous. Ethan and Olive’s bantering was enjoyable, and Ethan had a bunch of cute moments. The evolution for Ethan and Olive’s relationship was slow and believable; I really liked it. It wasn’t a changed-my-life read, but I liked it. It’s one of those that perhaps you’ll forget that you’ve read it until you scroll back through GoodReads or Instagram to see that you have.
The Ending: I promise there are no spoilers here! I loved that Christina Lauren actually finished a book that solved the problems that were presented throughout the novel. Like there’s a solid 50 additional pages that went on to resolve issues rather than cutting things off and moving on to the next book. Thank you! Problems were addressed that were brought up earlier in the book, characters were allowed to be fully formed and changed at the end of the book.
Plot: I really appreciated all of the twists and turns that came up in this novel. I’m not saying that this was the ultimate twist and turner thriller or anything, but rather that there were enough events that occurred that made it enjoyable. There was constant movement. Plus the ending with everything was so freaking good (see Ami bullet point). I mean the book is somewhat predictable but honestly it’s the little nuances of the plot that really sell it for me.
Ami: At first she annoyed me. She reminded me of my cousin whom I do not have a good relationship with. She too put me in a horrendous dress for her wedding (that I was the sad, older, hella single cousin to…). I digress. Ami grows on me throughout the novel as we learn more about her life from Olive and as she texts Olive. But she really shines at the end when she’s the most amazing badass woman in the book. I’m sorry Olive, but Ami kicks ass. She’s like a scorn country singer woman. Ugh. I love you, Ami.
This Enemies to Lovers: I like this trope. I love it when it’s well done, with both sides have to overcome the thing that once divided them. This version of it? Not my favorite. I’m tired of miscommunication and then relentless prejudice that separates the two people. I’m also so tired of the “I hate you/myself because I like you bullshit.” And guess what happens. I just feel like authors should be beyond this aspect of the trope by now or at least make it believable, especially ones that have written as many books as they haven.
PhD– So before this book I read their other one, My Favorite Half-Night Stand, and both times both female main characters have PhDs and I am really confused as to what they think doctorates involve. Like all of sudden half way through the book Olive states that she has a PhD in biology but is basically a pharmaceutical representative? And how is she not in a ton of debt and what exactly was her specialization in? Because they only say ‘viruses’ especially the flu. Ugh. Seriously? Why did she get a doctorate? What made her pursue it? Stop giving the female main characters PhDs just for the sake of making them ‘smart’ or idk. People don’t just happen upon PhDs!!!!
Long Story Short:
I would recommend The Unhoneymooners to someone who wants a cute read with good dialogue, a beautiful setting, and a whole lot of miscommunication. It was great for me because I read it during a time that I needed a simple, happy book. I didn’t want to think that hard and I definitely did not want any death in it. Christina Lauren provided a great rom-com with enough plot and character to keep me entertained for roughly 400 pages. I enjoyed the twists and was provided a HEA that I desperately needed.
If You Liked This One…
If you liked this book, I would highly recommend Faker by Sarah Smith as it has enemies-to-lovers that are coworkers. Additionally, Love on the Brain by Ali Hazelwood would be another good option as it is enemies-to-lovers with a STEM twist! Shipped by Angie Hockman also features a coworkers situation! As is Falon Ballard’s Just My Type. Christina Lauren have many books out there that would also make sense to pick up! All of these are contemporary romances.