By: Christina Lauren
Opening Line: “In the calm before the storm, in this case, the blessed quiet before the bridal suite is overrun by the wedding party, my twin sister stares critically down at a freshly painted shell-pink fingernail and says, “I bet you’re relieved I’m not a bridezilla.””
Overall: Ami and Olive Torres are twin sisters. However, they are not always very similar. For example, Olive is always unlucky, a pessimist (she would say a realist) and is currently unemployed. Ami is always lucky, wins every contest she enters, is bubbly, optimistic and very organized about everything. Ami got married to Dane in a lovely wedding where she got everything for the entire wedding for free through winning contests. They even had a big seafood buffet that she won for free. However, in hindsight, maybe free seafood was not the best idea because the whole wedding party promptly came down with horrendous food poisoning! Only the bride’s twin, Olive and the groom’s brother, Ethan did not eat the seafood, and so they did not get sick. Ami won (of course) a beautiful, free honeymoon to Maui that her and her groom were now too sick to go on. So, since they are the only two who are not sick, Ami’s twin Olive decides to go on the trip in her place, while Dane’s brother Ethan goes instead of him. Olive has always believed that Ethan hates her and fat shamed her the first time they met. But, she decides she can’t give up a free trip to Hawaii, and thinks that once she gets there can just avoid Ethan the whole time by doing her own thing. But, the two of them start to actually get to know eachother through a series of fun, couples activities included in the “Honeymoon Package” her sister won. As they are forced to interact and pretend that they are indeed honeymooners, they do have fun together and find they really enjoy each other’s company. So they really don’t mind too much having to act like real, happy, honeymooners at all times after they run into Olive’s future employer and Ethan’s ex-girlfriend at the same resort. As the couple gets to really know eachother and talk, they think about the possibility that maybe it was Ethan’s brother that caused them to not like eachother on purpose when they first met. Olive thinks that Dane was saying and doing things to keep the two of them apart and not interacting together for his own benefit. Ethan, sticking up for his brother, does not believe that is true. But, because of Dane, Olive misread an interaction the first time her and Ethan met, and has been hating him ever since. But, it turns out that she really does like Ethan. He is sweet, funny, respectful to women, adventurous, and the fact that he is hot and sexy are good too! The two of them end up hooking up on their “honeymoon” vacation. They really like eachother, are very cute together, and come back from their trip as a couple. But, then things get problematic back at home because Olive still believes that Dane is not a good husband to her sister and that causes a huge fight between all the parties involved. No one is talking to eachother, and no one believes Olive. Is Dane really a bad husband like Olives believes he is? Or is her negative nature just seeing things that aren’t there? Will Olive and Ethan get back together? More importantly, will Olive and her sister Ami ever make-up?
Ovations: First of all, the book is set in The Twin Cities of Minneapolis / St. Paul,
Minnesota. That is where I live! I had no idea when I bought the book that it is set here. I started reading and they were mentioning places I heard of and have been to. That is when I realized they were talking about Saint Paul! So, that was a fun surprise for me when I began the book! Also, the plot of this book makes sense and is fun. Nothing in the book feels contrived, like it would never happen. The storyline does not seem fake or forced, which I loved. The area of conflict is very believable too. I liked the relationship between the two main characters, Olive and Ethan. I like that she is the more negative and pessimistic one and he is the more open, happy and sweet one. It seems more often in rom-coms to be the opposite, that the woman is always the happy, sweet one and the man is the one more guarded and negative. So, that was a fun character twist. They make a cute couple. Also, they do have lots of fun, witty banter, which is very important to me in a rom-com. There are many funny lines, conversations, and interactions between the two of them. Plus, the storyline of honeymooning on the gorgeous island of Maui, is a wonderful romantic setting for a book too!
Oh Well: There is a lot of talk about Olive’s body in the book that I found very confusing. At the beginning of the book, Olive talks about not fitting into her bridesmaids dress and her boobs hanging out, and how the back of her outfit rips from her big bootie. One of the big reasons she does not like Ethan is that when they first met years ago, she believes he fat-shamed her while she was eating. She constantly says she is curvy and her sister is not. She talks about how she “gained weight” when she shows her identical twin sister’s driver’s license as her own on the trip. She sounds like she is describing herself as a plus-sized woman. That is great! Love to see a plus-sized Latina woman as the main romantic character. However, there are so many mixed messages in the book about her size. In some parts she feels fat and unattractive, but in other parts of the book she says she feels hot and sexy. Her descriptions of herself are all over the map. Like in one part she gets compared to looking like Selina Gomez, who is definitely NOT plus sized. Then, near the end of the book she makes statements that make it sound like her and her twin have the same body size. But, earlier in the book she says her twin in thin. So, all this is very confusing as the reader, and you just don’t really understand what Olive actually looks like.
Opinion: It was a fun surprise that this book was set in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, where I live! (They were in Hawaii for a lot of it, but many things in my home state are mentioned in the book when they are at home.) I enjoyed this fun, sexy rom-com. There was plenty of flirty banter, funny situations, and beautiful Maui locations. The two main characters were likeable and their chemistry is believable, and natural, while also being fun, and sexy. I would recommend reading this book if you like enemies-to-lovers rom-coms. Rating 8 out of 10
If you are interested in this book and want to buy it now so you don’t forget, as I often do, you can click on this safe Amazon link that will bring you directly to the books page where you can buy it. Click Here: The Unhoneymooners