Beach Read

Shipped

Shipped 

By: 

Anige Hockman 

Blurb: 

Between taking night classes for her MBA and her demanding day job at a cruise line, marketing manager Henley Evans barely has time for herself, let alone family, friends, or dating. But when she’s shortlisted for the promotion of her dreams, all her sacrifices finally seem worth it. 
 
The only problem? Graeme Crawford-Collins, the remote social media manager and the bane of her existence, is also up for the position. Although they’ve never met in person, their epic email battles are the stuff of office legend. 
 
Their boss tasks each of them with drafting a proposal on how to boost bookings in the Galápagos—best proposal wins the promotion. There’s just one catch: they have to go on a company cruise to the Galápagos Islands…together. But when the two meet on the ship, Henley is shocked to discover that the real Graeme is nothing like she imagined. As they explore the Islands together, she soon finds the line between loathing and liking thinner than a postcard. 
 
With her career dreams in her sights and a growing attraction to the competition, Henley begins questioning her life choices. Because what’s the point of working all the time if you never actually live? 

Review: 

After two DNF books, I was relieved to have one that I could finish. If you’re wondering why I haven’t posted a review in a while, that’s why. The book gods were not smiling down on me. Thankfully, Shipped was a nice, entertaining read. I would call it a good beach read, which I sadly did not read on a beach.  

Henley is a workaholic with understandable issues with male coworkers. Her boss is a clear misogynist, and a previous sexual partner stole her ideas and hard work. When the new guy seems to be doing the same thing, she doesn’t stop to wonder if there’s a misunderstanding. Considering the microaggressions and the ending of the book, no one can fault her for doing that.  

Despite having a weird spelling to his name, Graeme is a down-to-earth legitimate nice guy. Who is, naturally, hot. He’s not after Henley’s job, though, he clearly has every desire to get into her pants. He’s not pushy about it, though. He leaves the possibility of their relationship up to her. Consent was definitely present in Shipped.  

Something I enjoyed in Shipped was seeing all the work Henley had to do to get ahead. Not even ahead, but stay afloat. She was constantly working, which at times was boring, but it felt realistic. Part of the story was her learning how to create a work-life balance. Her family and friend relationships have suffered because she has focused so hard on her career. There’s nothing wrong with pursuing a career, but making it your sole focus to the detriment of everything else in your life is not healthy. Henley learns that lesson, and based on the ending, you know it’s going to stick.  

My favorite part of Shipped was the ending. Everyone got what they were owed, including the misogynistic boss. It was beautiful. This was Angie Hockman’s debut novel, so I’m interested to see what she comes up with next.  

3.75/5 

Beach Read

Beach Read

Beach Read

By: Emily Henry

Blurb:

Augustus Everett is an acclaimed author of literary fiction. January Andrews writes bestselling romance. When she pens a happily ever after, he kills off his entire cast.

They’re polar opposites.

In fact, the only thing they have in common is that for the next three months, they’re living in neighboring beach houses, broke, and bogged down with writer’s block.

Until, one hazy evening, one thing leads to another and they strike a deal designed to force them out of their creative ruts: Augustus will spend the summer writing something happy, and January will pen the next Great American Novel. She’ll take him on field trips worthy of any rom-com montage, and he’ll take her to interview surviving members of a backwoods death cult (obviously). Everyone will finish a book and no one will fall in love. Really.

Review:

Two writers decide to switch genres, one goes for romance the other literary fiction. The story is not really about that. It’s about January working through the death of her father and what she learned about him afterward. There’s a bit of romance thrown in as well. It’s more women’s literature than chick-lit, does that make sense?

January was depressed and had every reason to be, the book is filled with lots of memories of her dad, and her wondering if what she learned about him changed it all. The male lead, Gus, told her several times that she was sunshine and a princess because she always saw the good in people and things, but that is not the January that was in the book. It wasn’t easy to see that in her at all. She wrote romance novels with happy endings, and that was supposed to demonstrate that she was a happily ever after person.

Gus was a brooder. He had a shit life growing up, and didn’t believe he deserved someone as “carefree” as January. He was constantly getting in his own way by not communicating. January had to pry things out of him all the time.

Beach Read was very emotional, lots of tears, especially at the end. When January wasn’t processing all the stuff to do with her dad, she and Gus were interviewing cult survivors and visiting the burned down remains of the cult’s compound. The romance tried to lighten things up, but because of all the negative that was in their pasts, especially Gus’, it didn’t help that much. Beach Read very carefully rode the line between light and depressing.

3/5