Desert Isle Keeper
There is a special sort of magic that happens in a Christina Lauren book when the pair are firing on all cylinders. The dialogue sparkles, the characters settle into themselves quickly, and hundreds of pages fly by while you are contentedly spending time in their world. I am deeply pleased to report that The Unhoneymooners is one of the books that contains the magic.
This enemies-to-lovers, forced proximity tale has the added bonus of taking place in Hawaii – which is really not the worst place to locate a book that I read (and many others I will read) on holiday – and kicks off at a wedding.
Olive is the unlucky twin. While her sister wins everything from radio competitions to an all-expenses paid wedding to the perfect fiancé, Olive fumbles her way through life with slight tragedy as her constant companion. Latest example? Her sisters’ wedding, where she will be forced to be in close proximity to her sworn enemy, Ethan.
But the hits keep on coming, because the entire wedding party comes down with insane food poisoning over some bad (won in a contest) shellfish. Except, of course, for Olive and Ethan. Olive’s sister begs Olive to take her place on the all-expenses paid honeymoon to Hawaii – if someone doesn’t go, they’ll have to pay for it – and Olive is fairly gung-ho until she realizes she’ll be going with Ethan.
Okay, fine, she tells herself, they just need to get there and then she can enjoy a free vacation in Hawaii by avoiding him completely. Then she runs into her new boss, because she is the unluckiest person alive, and a small white lie snowballs into a big lie and she ends up fake married to Ethan and the Ethan-free vacation turns into their fake honeymoon.
Of course, as the days go by and she spends more and more time with the man himself, she discovers that maybe she’s, in fact, the luckiest woman.
I know there are folks for whom the patter of Lauren’s writing simply doesn’t work, and if you are in that category, this book will be no different. If, however, you are like me and count them among your favorite contemporary writers then you are in for a treat. There were a few bumps – I hate lying in a book, so there was a bit of an eyebrow raise at the continued deception practiced against the boss – but the overall charm of Ethan and the way Olive allowed herself to grow was too scrumptious to not want to read this again.
All in all, throw The Unhoneymooners into the beach bag for the summer vacation and thank me later.