Turning the Pages: The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

If You Like Pina….Wait, what’s stronger?

Hey guys! Michelle here again, and today I fangirl for The Unhoneymooners.

This time, we’re going for the swoon and heart eyes with Christina Lauren‘s The Unhoneymooners. Another known fact about me is that I love romance. Sexy times with words? Yes! Positive FEELS on the page? Please! Besides, it’s a great mood booster, a great escape, and most of all? It’s an amazing way to make your heart sing.

We’re still getting to know one another, so I’ll let you in on a secret – I love Christina Lauren. We go way back, and I am so glad to watch all of their warranted success. For those of you who don’t know, both Christina and Lauren are the genius writing duo behind so many beautiful reads.

Before I share my thoughts with you, let’s talk about The Unhoneymooners.

For two sworn enemies, anything can happen during the Hawaiian trip of a lifetime—maybe even love—in this romantic comedy from the New York Times bestselling authors of Roomies.

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.

He said what?!

The romance genre can cover a multitude of tropes: friends to lovers, hate to love, soul mates, second chance love, secret romance, reunited love, love triangles, first love, and the list goes on. But one commonality between the tropes are the recognizable factors that we can see in our lives. And for stories written by Christina Lauren? I can relate to them all.

The Unhoneymooners has all of the boxes checked for a book that you will obsess about.

Witty and snarky banter? Check.
Delicious angst ? Check.
Forlorned sexual longing? Check.
Dream boat hottie with ‘tude? Check.
Ba-da-bing, ba-da-BOOM? Check.

Told in a dual point-of-view, Christina Lauren starts the story amidst wedding hell. Olive’s twin is getting married. You know, wedding bliss and all those happy thoughts…sort of. Olive views herself as the lesser of the twins, having lived an opposite life. Ethan is the groom’s brother, who has a very obvious disdain for her. It’s very evident and he has no qualms in keeping his thoughts to himself. Ethan is the type of guy who would say something right before they walk down in procession.

In a series of very unfortunate events, Olive has found herself travel-bound on her sister’s honeymoon with none other than her new brother-in-law. But the best part? You can see this fun (self censored, fill your own word here) show from a mile away! And what does Ethan say about the dress? Well, that she looks like a can of 7UP.

Yup, definitely hate to love.

Cloud negative nine

Olive and Ethan are Hawaii-bound. With elements of Taming of the Shrew, they argue, disagree, and seem to repel from a civility towards each other. While they could just spend time apart throughout it all, they are both forced to interact with each other in an inhibited way. Tension builds between the two (wink, wink), and truths are revealed and flaws suddenly become endearing.

Let’s talk about the snark in The Unhoneymooners. I found myself laughing so much while reading the shenanigans of Olive and Ethan. Schoolboy giggles? It happened. Immature snickering? You bet. If you have followed Christina and Lauren on their socials, or if you’ve met them in person, then you’ll know that they are hilarious. The amount of snark weaved within the dialogue and the inner monologue is a perfect representation of who they are. It is smart and genuine because it all felt natural and effortless.

Okay, meat and potatoes time. The sexual tension. In true Christina Lauren fashion, they do not skimp on delicious literary sexy times. In a slow build, the tension is very, very palpable. Olive is a voluptuous female, and when we get to the bits and pieces where Ethan appreciates her? Oh, friends, you won’t want to miss it. I went from glee to hot and bothered in 60 seconds.

Guys, don’t come knocking.

Final thoughts

Jokes and sexy times aside, there is a realization that Olive and Ethan’s reality no longer has clout. There is a knowledge that everyone has a side of their story, and there is always something to be learned from their experiences together. I enjoyed and appreciated the message of acceptance, self and otherwise, because it is very important today. Olive’s story made me personally realize things about myself that I have been hiding from, and when you, as a reader, can put yourself in a character’s place? That is a talent in itself.

I inhaled this story. I don’t think I could have read it fast enough. It was so engaging and so enthralling that I couldn’t put it down. I may have ignored everyone around me (sorry, kids!), didn’t get sleep (who needs sleep when you have Ethan?), and sacrificed human priorities to stay in this world. And friends, if that doesn’t say anything, then I don’t know what does.

I haven’t felt instant love for a book in a long while, but after getting to know Olive and Ethan, I just knew. Undoubtedly, The Unhoneymooners is one of my favorite reads to date.

The Unhoneymooners is out now.

Published by: Simon & Schuster/Gallery
Release Date: May 14, 2019
Genre: Contemporary Romance
ISBN: 9781501128035

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