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"The Unhoneymooners" by Christina Lauren reviewed by Kriya (Grade 10)

Honeymoon over to The Unhoneymooners.

You’re probably aware of the classic romance tropes: enemies to lovers, wedding romances, fake relationships. Christina Lauren manages combines all of that expertly - and more!

Olive Torres is convinced she has the worst luck in the world. It doesn’t help that her twin sister, bride-to-be Ami, has incredible luck, winning nearly every raffle or contest she’s entered. In fact, it’s how she managed to put together her extravagant wedding to Dane Thomas (a classic dude-bro who may not be the ultimate catch, but makes Ami happy) for under a thousand dollars - by winning a series of sweepstakes for bridesmaid dresses, a chocolate fountain, roses, and so much more. So it’s a surprise when Olive’s bad luck works in her favor; her shellfish allergy prevents her from eating the (free) buffet at the wedding, the buffet that gave everyone else at the wedding severe food poisoning.

Well, everyone except for Ethan. Ethan Thomas, the older brother of the groom, is Olive’s archnemesis… and apparently not a big fan of buffets, leaving him completely healthy as well. Sick and heaving off of the side of her bed, Ami urges Olive to take her place in the (free) 10-day honeymoon to Maui, and naturally, Dane asks Ethan. All Olive has to do is use Ami’s first name and Dane’s last name for the entire vacation to abide by the ironclad contract Ami signed with the hotel financing the honeymoon, and act like a just-married couple only in front of the hotel staff. Easy enough, right? But of course, while Olive and Ethan are more than happy to honeymoon separately, on their first day of arrival, they run into Olive’s new boss, and later on, a blast from Ethan’s past, and must convince Olive Torres is relatable without even trying. She’s funny, confident, but most importantly, she’s dedicated - to her sister’s happiness, her new job, and even to this charade she has to pull with Ethan.

Readers will adore her, although at times, they might get a little frustrated with that dedication (or as Ethan would call it, stubbornness). Their lush vacation sounds like something out of a dream, and it will leave readers wanting to pack their bags and head to Maui with their archnemesis immediately. Fans of novels like The Hating Game and Red, White, and Royal Blue will adore this novel. Expect language and some mature content (13 +).

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