Sunday, July 24, 2016

Review: Hollywood Happily Ever After by Mia Caldwell

Hollywood Happily Ever After by Mia Caldwell
July 24th, 2016
Squee! Omg I loved this book! This is my first Mia Caldwell book, so I look forward to going through her back list after this! I received this audiobook in exchange for a review, and I'm so glad I took a chance on it.

HHEA follows the exploits of Olive, the assistant to an owner(the first woman) of a Hollywood studio, and Beckett Blackthorn, an up and coming Hollywood actor. The story takes an interesting turn when Beckett mistakes Olive by her Hollywood studio owner boss.

Olive was sent to a Hollywood wedding in Bali, Indonesia because her boss couldn't go, and every twist and turn leads her to Beckett. This had the potential to irritate to me, because I'm not a fan of romantic comedy motion pictures(mainly due to lack of diversity) but this book was so cute. Here are all it's strong and weak points for me.

Things I connected with:

~Olive was adorable. She reminded me of your typical heroine in a romantic comedy. AND she was dark skinned, so I needed this book.
~Her best friend Jessamin was Croatian. I had to be the best person to read this book, because I have a long time penpal of 7 years from Croatia, who visited the US for the first time this year, and we finally got to meet each other! So I'm obviously bias.
~Beckett wasn't overly charming, but I didn't hate him. He wasn't a jerk. He wasn't an asshole, so I could live with it. He took his celebrity seriously, and wasn't out there drinking and partying every night like all these actors under 30 do.
~It was set in Indonesia most of the plot. That's different, definitely never seen it in a romance book with a Black woman.

But I connected to most of all to this particular line about tragedies that happen outside the US.
"It's like, if it doesn't happen in the States, we have a goldfish memory." And I think that every time we're praying for a Western country, but ignore everywhere else. It reminded me of a recent blog post on Musings of a Romance Junkie, where you can be socially conscious and  still write enjoyable romance.

Things I didn't connect with:

~Lack of condom in the sex scene(and no oral sex, wtf)
~Not necessarily a disconnection, but Beckett called her by her real name(at about 65%) but he didn't know it at the time. Could've just been a typo.
~Lack of physical descriptions. I knew the basics, but I never pictured more than the cover models, because outside of Beckett's brown eyes/hair and Olive's dark skin, I had no idea what to picture.
~That cheap jab at YA books Beckett made. I'm biased, because I read a lot of YA, so I know it's not just "end-of-the-world ass kicking heroine or sad teenagers-facing-their-own-morality.

But that was about it. I dont think it'll be everyone's cuppa, but if you like romantic comedies in real life, you'll love this. Check it out on Amazon and Audible!