The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren follows Olive, a cynical woman who feels overshadowed by her more successful sister. On her twin sister’s wedding day, all of the guests became violently ill after a bad buffet, except Olive and her arch nemesis, Ethan. When Olive’s sister convinces her to take the newlyweds’ free honeymoon with Ethan, Olive is less than thrilled. However, she must soon rely on Ethan during the trip when she encounters her new boss who believes she is married to Ethan.
I’ve read two other books by the author duo Christina Lauren, Roomies and Hating You/Dating You. For me, both were average reads that lacked a certain spark that would make me really love them. Christina Lauren is a well-loved author duo, and since I heard great reviews and the plot sounded interesting, I decided to pick this one up. While I liked some aspects of The Unhoneymooners more than their other books, it still sits as an average read for me.
The Unhoneymooners is pitched as an enemies to lovers romance which is one of my favorite tropes in romance books. Like some other reviews that I read, The Unhoneymooners is more of a watered down version of this trope. While I appreciated the fun banter between the characters, the misconceptions in their “hate” part of their relationship is solved fairly early on (about halfway through the book). Although Olive and Ethan’s relationship was cute, it isn’t anything remarkable.
One trope that I didn’t enjoy, however, was twins dating siblings. As a twin myself, I have had countless people over the years ask if my sister and I will date twins and we’ll get married on the same day. Since Olive’s sister married Ethan’s brother, they are sister and brother-in-laws. While they aren’t blood related, there are so many jokes about them “switching sisters.” These jokes aren’t necessarily condoned by characters in the book, but they are often written off like the character “didn’t mean it that way.” I’m not sure if other readers will really be bothered by this trope or comments, but because I am a twin, they hindered my reading experience. (P.S. If you have any recommendations with a realistic, strong bond between twins, please leave it in the comments!)
One of the aspects of this book that I really enjoyed was Olive’s family. While sometimes overbearing, you really sensed how much each person cared for each other. They mostly appear in the beginning and ends of the story, but they were definitely a highlight for me.
I think my biggest problem was this book was the “plot twist” concerning Olive and her sister. Olive learns something major troubling news from Ethan about her sister’s relationship. However, she eventually pushes the information aside and doesn’t get involved until the situation involves her directly. Like Olive, I am a twin. If I heard the news that Olive heard about her sister’s relationship, I would be on the phone with my sister in seconds. Instead, Olive seems more concerned about how it could potentially impact her relationship with Ethan. Although the information Olive discovers is hurtful, I could personally never imagine withholding that information that she learns and it really rubbed me the wrong way and dampened the end of the book for me.
Overall, The Unhoneymooners is an average romance. While it was an easy read that had its fun moments, there were some aspects that affected my reading experience negatively. I give this book three out of five stars.