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Release Reviews: Hooking Up: Helena Hunting

Hooking Up
Helena Hunting
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Release Date November 7, 2017



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.

graphics from author's Facebook page
It was supposed to be the best day of her life, but it went downhill fast. Amalie Whitfield's wedding turned into a disaster of epic proportions. Amalie has a history of bad choices in men so she thought picking the suave and successful, Armstrong was a good choice that would make her parents proud...but still it came with bad consequences.  And under the influence of alcohol and rage she tried to get back at him using someone close to them. 

Lexington Mills was equally inebriated and unprepared to handle his cousin's hysterical bride who apparently also wanted to get into his pants. Despite the fact he has feelings for her, he manages to resist her wild seduction. After all, he had wanted her first, but his competitive cousin stole her away from him. His bad boy image could not initially compare to his cousin's sophisticated charm so he lost his chance. But then Lex found himself  in the middle of the eventual chaos anyway.  And the fall-out from the wedding debacle will have ripple effects throughout their family. 

So the bride takes off for an undisclosed anti-honeymoon location and Lex heads for Bora Bora to deal with family hotel business until the storm begins to pass. But they did not expect to end up  in the same place. Flirting banter, sexual tension, raging chemistry, and unresolved feelings spice things up while he is there for her to lean on.

Lex is sexy, sweet, thoughtful, flirty, dirty, and caring. I loved him and how he took care of her. She had been repressing herself to fit a mold, but Lex lets her be herself...bold, outspoken, naughty, and encourages her  to push boundaries.

Now she is engaging her "Anarchy Amy" wilder side again and  hooking up with the bad boy who might not really be  that bad, and trying to decide if he is a good or bad decision. But obviously trying to take the safe path did not work out so well for her either. Their secret fling is just supposed to be a temporary diversion or distraction. But it is also hard to think about it ending.

There's a thin line between good and bad. Sometimes being a little bad can feel oh-so-good. And maybe good things can come to you when you least expect it. But her life is one big mess that is proving hard to clean up. And their lives are complicated with family, friends, and questionable intentions.  What happens when they have to deal with the real world?

This was a fast paced, funny, sweet, sexy, forbidden affair and vacation romp with plenty of complications and angst. There is a lot of back and forth, running, and questionable decisions given the situation. It is told in dual points of view. Characters from Shacking Up are back including his brothers, Bane and Griffin,  and her best friend, Ruby. The guys' cousin, Armstrong is back and I so wanted to smack him over and over. And their families are all part of the background.

I loved Lex. He was swoonworthy. I liked the beginning a lot, but it started to get a bit repetitious and fell apart some in the last half. I was left with a few questions about things that I thought would be fleshed out more later, but they were not. Some things got tied up rather quickly. But it was still overall fun and engaging.  And there seemed to be a little mystery left open so I wonder how that might play into the next book. I am sure Griffin and possibly Armstrong's estranged brother might  get a book.

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review. 
Horrified after her brand new husband finds a happy ending at their wedding without her, and within earshot of her and all their guests, Amelia decides she needs a break from reality, and heads off on the honeymoon by herself. But she finds she isn’t as alone as she planned when she learns her husband’s cousin is also on the same tropical island working.

Armstrong’s part in this seemed to drag on for no purpose. There was a lot of drama, so I kept waiting for a bombshell in regards to his reasoning or a blowup. I suppose what happens is sort of a bombshell, but by the time it hits and the way Amalie handles it, makes me wonder why she didn’t just move that direction in the first place.

I love Lex. He is such a good guy, and such a drastic difference from Armstrong’s treatment of Amie that it was like a breath of fresh air. His conflict with Armstrong added an aspect of tension to the story, and I always hoped for the best especially as things started to look like maybe Lex wasn’t all he seemed to be.

There were a few plot holes that left me questioning events and reasons, but they weren’t large enough to detract from my enjoyment of the book. They were things I noted in the moment, thinking resolution would come later and I only noticed the holes in hindsight when I thought about the moments again.

This was a fun read with great banter, great chemistry, and great sex. Lex and Amalie genuinely enjoy each other’s company, and while their fling begins as a vacation hookup to get Amalie’s mind off things, it turns into much more.

I was gifted a copy in exchange for an honest review.
Shacking Up
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Our 4 star reviews

Ruby Scott is months behind on rent and can’t seem to land a steady job. She has one chance to turn things around with a big audition. But instead of getting her big break, she gets sick as a dog and completely bombs it in the most humiliating fashion. All thanks to a mysterious, gorgeous guy who kissed—and then coughed on—her at a party the night before.

Luckily, her best friend might have found the perfect opportunity; a job staying at the lavish penthouse apartment of hotel magnate Bancroft Mills while he’s out of town, taking care of his exotic pets. But when the newly-evicted Ruby arrives to meet her new employer, it turns out Bane is the same guy who got her sick.Seeing his role in Ruby’s dilemma, Bane offers her a permanent job as his live-in pet sitter until she can get back on her feet.

Filled with hilariously awkward encounters and enough sexual tension to heat a New York City block, Shacking Up, from
 NYT and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting, is sure to keep you laughing and swooning all night long.
Helena Hunting 

NYT and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting lives on the outskirts of Toronto with her incredibly tolerant family and two moderately intolerant cats. She writes contemporary romance ranging from new adult angst to romantic sports comedy. 

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