Review: The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

Title: The Unhoneymooners
Author: Christina Lauren
Publisher: Gallery Books
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Paperback, 432 Pages
Published May 2019

Summary: Olive is always unlucky: in her career, in love, in…well, everything. Her identical twin sister Ami, on the other hand, is probably the luckiest person in the world. Her meet-cute with her fiancé is something out of a romantic comedy (gag) and she’s managed to finance her entire wedding by winning a series of Internet contests (double gag). Worst of all, she’s forcing Olive to spend the day with her sworn enemy, Ethan, who just happens to be the best man. Olive braces herself to get through 24 hours of wedding hell before she can return to her comfortable, unlucky life. But when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning from eating bad shellfish, the only people who aren’t affected are Olive and Ethan. And now there’s an all-expenses-paid honeymoon in Hawaii up for grabs. Putting their mutual hatred aside for the sake of a free vacation, Olive and Ethan head for paradise, determined to avoid each other at all costs. But when Olive runs into her future boss, the little white lie she tells him is suddenly at risk to become a whole lot bigger. She and Ethan now have to pretend to be loving newlyweds, and her luck seems worse than ever. But the weird thing is that she doesn’t mind playing pretend. In fact, she feels kind of... lucky.

I've always been a huge rom-com fan, particularly when the story involves my favorite enemies-to-lovers trope, so when our good friend Dana from over at Dana Square recommended this one to me, I immediately knew it was going to be the kind of story I loved, and I ended up pre-odering it on the spot. I ended up being really glad that I did, because this story hooked me and refused to let me go, and I'll definitely be recommending it to more of my friends in the future. So without further ado, let's get into my review!

As the summary explains, Olive and Ethan are mortal enemies, for more reasons than one. It definitely doesn't help that their siblings are about to get married, meaning they'll be spending a whole lot more time with each other. Even more time than they expect, after everyone at the wedding gets sick from the buffet, and they find out that their siblings want them to take the non-refundable honeymoon trip to Hawaii, posing as a married couple, so it doesn't go to waste. Which should be easy enough...until Olive runs into her new boss in Hawaii, and the charade gets all the more personal. While they try to keep up a persona of being happily married and in love, Olive and Ethan also have to find out how to just manage to tolerate each other...and it's safe to say that things get a little bit messy.

I really, really enjoyed reading this book. I really loved the playful banter between Olive and Ethan, particularly when they called each other by names that were anything other than their actual names. I noticed that those were the parts of this book where I found myself laughing out loud the most. Speaking of laughing out loud, this book was so dang hilarious that I found it so hard to put down! I managed to read nearly 200 pages in a single day just because I was so addicted to the story and didn't want to stop reading. I even had to spend some time at a family party, and the entire time I sitting there, I was just thinking about how I couldn't wait to get back home, curl up, and keep on reading. It's been a long time since I've been so emotionally invested in a book like that, so I'm really glad that I got to experience that again with this one, especially as I test the waters and start to read some non-YA books in addition to my usual YA reading. It's safe to say that I've been enjoying the broadening of my reading so far!

Something else that I really loved about this book was the way the enemies-to-lovers trope was played out without seeming too dramatic, forced, or unrealistic, if that makes any sense. Olive and Ethan didn't get along very well at first, but it was clear that there was still some level of respect there. A lot of their "hate" was just playful banter, and a lot of snide remarks in Olive's head, which made for an amusing reading experience. The sexual tension literally radiated off of the two of them, and it was clear that it was just a matter of time before the enemies stance tipped into lovers territory -- which I wasn't disappointed about seeing coming from a mile away, because a) this is an enemies-to-lovers book, so that's to be expected, and also b) because it made the tension so much more interested and made me so much more invested a reader! Ethan is definitely a cocky, super cute guy, and I found myself swooning over him against my better judgement (in the beginning, when it's all hate), just like Olive was.

(Spoilers in this paragraph, so skip to the next one if you want to avoid them!) The only thing that I wasn't super thrilled about with this book was the way that Ethan seemed to be so blindingly defensive of Dane when the truth comes to light about his cheating. I understand the idea of being loyal to your family members and everything, but cheating is something that I draw a hard and fast line at. I know that's not something I can critique in the writing style itself, since it both serves as a crucial plot point and also because that's my own personal stance on cheating, so I'm not saying that this was an actual flaw with the book in any way. I'm just saying that from my own standpoint as a reader with my own personal values, I found that part of the book a little tough to get through, because I couldn't believe that Ethan would so blatantly side with such a sleazy guy, regardless of if he was his brother or not. But again, that's just my own personal opinion, and everyone is free to read it differently!

Overall, I really enjoyed reading The Unhoneymooners. I think it was the perfect balance of a sexy, slow-burn romance while also playing off of that enemies aspect, and setting the entire thing in a gorgeous Hawaiian island (with *~one bed~*) is just icing on the rom-com cake. If you're a fan of The Hating Game, then I'd definitely recommend picking this one up -- it's safe to say that reading my first Christina Lauren book was a success, and I'll be eagerly devouring the rest of their books throughout my summer!

1 comment

  1. Great review! I totally agree with you that it was hilarious! I was literally laughing out loud pretty often while reading.


Please note that if your comment doesn’t appear right away it’s because we have to approve it & Make sure to clock the "notify me" box so you can check back once your comment has been approved! ❤️