Series: Shacking Up #2
Published by Swerve on November 1st 2017
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Source: Personal Copy
Also by this author: Shacking Up
Amalie Whitfield is the picture of a blushing bride during her wedding reception–but for all the wrong reasons. Instead of proclaiming his undying love, her husband can be heard, by Amalie and their guests, getting off with someone else. She has every reason to freak out, and in a moment of insanity, she throws herself at the first hot-blooded male she sees. But he’s not interested in becoming her revenge screw.
Mortified and desperate to escape the post-wedding drama, Amalie decides to go on her honeymoon alone, only to find the man who rejected her also heading to the same tiny island for work. But this time he isn’t holding back. She should know better than to sleep with someone she knows, but she can’t seem to resist him.
They might agree that what happens on the island should stay on the island, but neither one can deny that their attraction is more than just physical.
Filled with hilariously scandalous situations and enough sexual chemistry to power an airplane from New York City to the South Pacific, Hooking Up is the next standalone, laugh-out-loud romantic comedy from Helena Hunting, the New York Times bestselling author of the Pucked series and Shacking Up.
I love a good Helena Hunting book and had been looking forward to seeing Amalie kick Armstrong to the curb since they appeared in Shacking Up. Hooking Up was a terrific piece of romantic comedy with a little bit of self-discovery and girl power thrown in for fun. Oh – and it takes place in Bora Bora and New York – talk about a great setting!
Prim and proper Amalie Whitfield has horrible taste in men. Attracted to bad boys in the extreme, she’s still living down the night she spent in Mexican jail thanks to her ex’s “import” career. Her luck hits rock bottom though when she discovers her “Good boy” husband, Armstrong, having sex with another woman on at their wedding reception. Determined not to let this defeat her, Amalie hops on a plane to Bora Bora to enjoy a solo honeymoon. Amalie crosses paths with Lexington Mills – an acquaintance who happened to be at the wedding – once on the island. Lexington long harbored a secret crush on Amalie, and well… you can guess what happens from there!
Here’s what I loved:
Amalie’s Evolution: Amalie reforms herself into a prim and proper good girl for Armstrong, forsaking her wild ‘Anarchy Amy’ side. Once again, a classic trope of a woman changing herself for a guy who gone and done her wrong. She has a lot going for her – successful career, great friends, super smart – and she slowly begins regaining confidence in herself throughout the book after Armstrong’s betrayal.
Hating on Armstrong: Readers got a glimpse of Armstrong and his underlying slimeball-ness in the previous book, Shacking Up, so no love lost when he turns out to be the villain we all thought he’d be. What’s even better? He was so easy to hate! As strange as it sounds, sometimes it’s nice just disliking a character with no qualms. It’s kind of a strange form of therapy. This guy really had zero redeeming qualities and Hunting didn’t try to give him any.
Lexington as the Hidden Bad Boy: At first, Lexington comes off as another good guy in a suit; however, the hidden sleeve tattoo hinted to Amalie what a ‘bad guy’ he could be. Lexington has a heart of gold. Mistakenly labeled as a slacker after taking time away from work to take care of a family member, Lexington now makes up for it by putting in the extra mile at his family’s hotel business. I appreciated his patience with Amalie. Despite his long-standing crush, Lexington gave Amalie much-needed space to come to terms with Armstrong’s betrayal and regain her ‘Anarchy Amy’ ways.
General Note: Hooking Up can be read as a standalone; however, I highly recommend reading its predecessor, Shacking Up to maximize the enjoyment. The two main characters from Shacking Up, Ruby and Bane, are major secondary characters in this book.