Review: The Honey Don’t List by Christina Lauren

Posted March 23, 2020 by Lorna in Reviews / 22 Comments

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I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: The Honey Don’t List by Christina Lauren
The Honey Don't List

One StarOne StarOne Star
three-flames


Genres: Contemporary Romance
Published by Gallery Books
Released on March 24, 2020
Pages: 320
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
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The Delight

The anticipation of a new book from this author duo is the delight here for me. Their books have garnered almost all 4 and 5 stars from me, although I still have more to read of theirs, especially the oldest books. I honestly can’t say this book was a favorite this time however. But, even so, it still was a pretty good read.


Review

Carey Douglas is the right hand man(woman)for a couple that star on a reality show about redoing homes and decorating them. Initially reminiscent of Joanna and Chip Gaines of HGTV fame, this couple has zero in common with them as far as their personal life is concerned. James McCann is now the right hand man for Rusty Tripp the male half of the couple. Educated as an engineer, James took the job thinking he was going to be an engineer on the show, instead he is now practically babysitting the sometimes hard drinking and womanizing Rusty. Melissa Tripp, the female half of the couple, is the controlling business person behind their success. She’s also supposedly the designer, while Rusty is the carpenter. Carey has worked for the couple since she was sixteen(ten years) and has risen to be the brains behind most of the design part of the show. Totally unsung of course. The Tripps have a new book being released on how to stay in a good marriage. The kicker is that the Tripps are on the verge of divorce. Carey and James are tasked with going on the road with the two and keeping them from killing each other or otherwise causing the public to find out about their rift. In the process, will Carey and James find some common ground and realize how right they are for each other?

I mostly enjoyed the young couple. I did think Carey was kinda clueless about how much of the fame and money earned by the Tripps really did belong to her. I think she was too afraid to lose her health insurance because of an ongoing illness, but still she needed to speak up and that made her almost a weak heroine for me. I understand they were like family to her, but Melissa just treats her like dirt and she takes it, time and time again. Just a no for me. And James was a really good guy, still new to the job, but even he has realized how much he’s been played and he’s not a happy man. The Tripps were just a train wreck. The only one I sort of liked was Rusty and I really disliked his drinking and womanizing.

I’m usually fairly game for most fun road trip books. This trip was pretty much the opposite of fun. I did enjoy the sparks that were flying around the young couple, but all the fighting between the older couple really took away from the book. Where’s the humor usually involved in these author’s books?

I wish I could say that I loved this book as I have with so many others by these authors. I just can’t. However, I did like lots of things about the read so 3 stars seems to be about right. For adult readers of contemporary romance.

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I’m a lifetime book addict and currently own nine Kindles, with only six still working. I do tend to wear them out! They pretty much are my favorite technology-well that and my cell phone. Okay, yes and my laptop. I spent most of my life in Kentucky, but moved to Maryland in my attempt to get closer to the the ocean a few years ago. Being retired helps. I have a B.S. degree in law enforcement with a minor in sociology, but never really worked in my major. Instead, I spent my entire adult life working in the medical field in some capacity. After retiring(early), I found my passion in reviewing books for a couple of blogs and I love it. My author favorites include, Dannika Dark, Amber Lynn Natusch, J.T. Geissinger, Colleen Hoover, Samantha Towle, K.A. Tucker, Karina Halle, Sarina Bowen, J.R. Ward, Mariana Zapata, Dianne Duvall, and I could go on and on. I read many different genre’s, but still like a romantic element in most, if not all of them.

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Melliane
8 months ago

Oh it’s too bad it wasn’t more for this one. I didn’t realize that they had a new book

Lorna
Lorna
8 months ago
Reply to  Melliane

Yes, I always get the arc if possible every time they release a book. I usually really love their work.

sherry fundin
8 months ago

the title made me curious. sorry it wasn’t what you were hoping.
sherry @ fundinmental

Lorna
Lorna
8 months ago
Reply to  sherry fundin

I normally love these author’s work. Thanks!

Sophia Rose
8 months ago

Oh no, that does sound like a rather flat story, Lorna. Guess this was their one dud. 🙁

Lorna
Lorna
8 months ago
Reply to  Sophia Rose

Yes, I guess so, although there was one other that I only gave 3 stars to. Mostly though they are amazing.

Jenea’s Book Obsession

I enjoyed this one but the road trip part was a little meh for me too.

Lorna
Lorna
8 months ago

Yes, it wasn’t exactly fun was it?

Sam@wlabb
8 months ago

I liked this more than you. I think it’s because I adjusted my expectations. I realized this wasn’t going to be the romance I was expecting, but rather went more women’s fiction. Once I accepted that, I found it easier to laugh at the funny bits, and appreciate Carey’s journey

Lorna
Lorna
7 months ago
Reply to  Sam@wlabb

You are right, I wanted a fun romance and this definitely wasn’t that. Weird I just got the email saying you commented, 11 days later.

Karen Alderman
8 months ago

Their books are always hit or miss for me. I LOVED Josh and Hazel but a few others have been meh. I’m guessing this would be in the meh camp.

A friend of mine really liked it though because of the HGTV connection.

Karen @ For What It’s Worth

Lorna
Lorna
8 months ago
Reply to  Karen Alderman

I thought I was going to love it because of the HGTV connection too, but not really in the end.

Carole's Random Life in Books

I have only read one book by this writing pair and I liked it but didn’t love it. I do want to read more of their work but I think I might pick up a different one. I don’t think I would enjoy the fighting from the older couple either.

Lorna
Lorna
7 months ago

My favorites are Sweet Filthy Boy, Love and Other Words and Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating. Although, I’ve loved some others. I’ve still not read their Beautiful series.

Carole Rae
7 months ago

3 stars isn’t terrible. 🙂 Seems to fit this

Lorna
Lorna
7 months ago
Reply to  Carole Rae

I don’t rate many books under 3. Or 1 star at all. Usually just DNF if they are that bad.

Lover of Romance
7 months ago

I am sorry to hear that this one was such a disappointment at times. I love a good road trip adventure but I have struggled with this duo author writing team. But I know many other readers love them. Its good to hear it had its redeeming qualities.

Great review Lorna.

Lorna
Lorna
7 months ago

Thank you. Sometimes it’s harder to write a review for a book that just doesn’t do it for you but could be a good read for someone else. I want to be fair. They’ve had books I’ve loved so much, this is only the second one I’ve given less than 4 stars to.

Anne - Books of My Heart

I liked this one a bit more than you but I agree with your points. Melissa and Rusty were a train wreck and completely annoying. Carey and James were almost enemies to lovers but it was a very slow burn on their romance. I think there was less humor in this story than most of their work. I waited for the audio so my review is tomorrow. (So now I can read other reviews as I have written mine)

Lorna
Lorna
7 months ago

Sometimes I like an audio version of a book more than if I read it. I think it just makes it better if the narrator is good. It was definitely a slow burn, I agree.

Naomi Hop
7 months ago

It is a shame that one of your favourite authors didn’t deliver this time…

Lorna
Lorna
7 months ago
Reply to  Naomi Hop

Mostly they do deliver with their books. I read Love and Other Words recently and gave it 5 stars. It was wonderful.