Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Shacking Up by Helena Hunting

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 New York Times and USA Today bestselling author Helena Hunting, is sure to keep you laughing and swooning all night long.

Add to Goodreads –

Book 1
Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
St. Martin's Press

Reviews by the Wicked Reads Review Team

Just a couple of weeks ago I got the chance to read Ms. Hunting's Halloween story about this couple, in the Eye Candy collection of novellas, and knew immediately that I needed to read back and find out just how the whole story started! I am normally a stickler for reading series in order, but it turns out that hindsight can be quite useful too! And certainly when it came to Amalie and Armstrong, it was fun to think that I knew more than they did!

Ruby is one of those fascinating characters who has been formed by her past, but who is determined to change her present and her future; even if it much harder work than it could be. I love her drive, her acceptance of less even though she has been used to a lot more – and love her honesty and cynicism about the value of money over love. Her father is most certainly not a great role model when it comes to men, but she has still enough of a romantic nature to give love a chance.

Some of the scenes in this book are utterly hilarious and I do recommend that you are in a place where silence is not required (or have a cushion to smother your laughter). It was a very refreshing take on the rich male, not so rich female story, and Bane's past as a rugby player had made him much more of a thinking man than many. His generosity and kindness were a definite turn on... even if the sock habit threatened everything in the beginning!

Thank you, Ms. Hunting, for a very entertaining story. I cannot wait to read Hooking Up – the new book in the series.

Avid Reader☆☆☆☆
This is the full-length story of Ruby and Bancroft. I was able to see a glimpse into this couple in a short Halloween novella and I loved that I got to see how Ruby and Bancroft began.

Ruby is a quirky, independent, and awesome character. She is trying to find her own way and despite having a less than stellar dad, she continues to want to impress and seek his approval. When she finds herself in a bind, none other than Bancroft comes to her rescue.

Bancroft is a very wealthy, ex-rugby (yum) player and he is so very nice that it almost seems fake. When he realizes that he might have cost Ruby a lot more than a week of being sick, he wants to do something to help. I love how he loves his pets and I also love how he shows Ruby how much he supports her.

There is obvious miscommunication in this story and I really wanted to hurt Bancroft's mother several times. Then you have Armstrong (who I despise just as much in this story as I did in the novella) and Amalie, who I think is just as weak as she was in the novella. I really want more from Bancroft's family men.

I loved the chemistry that Ruby and Bancroft shared, and I like how they were able to talk and develop their relationship before just jumping in to bed. I think that this was a sweet story with a lot of hilarity mixed in to some more serious issues.

I can't wait to see what more comes of all of these characters.

Helena Hunting rocks at sports romances and this one is no exception – loved it!

Ruby Scott is a performer who can’t seem to catch a break. Her father is rich but has pretty much cut Ruby off in the hopes she’ll return home and Ruby is getting more and more behind on her bills, then some random man kisses her the night before her last lined up audition and gets her extremely sick with the flu. Ruby’s best friend is engaged and her fiancé’s cousin happens to be going out of town for five weeks and needs a pet-sitter, win-win! Ruby’s super surprised to show up and find Bane, the random kisser. Bane feels terrible about getting Ruby sick and offers her his place as long as she needs. The two are extremely attracted to one another but with Bane leaving, starting something just isn’t a good idea… but then the two talk the entire time Bane is gone and an unbreakable friendship is forged. Once Bane returns things really heat up!

I think my favorite part about this book is that though there is the one crazy kiss at the beginning, these two don’t just jump into bed with one another. Things move slow and usually that would make for a boring read, but Helena Hunting does a marvelous job keeping things interesting. I couldn’t put this book down! I can’t wait for the next book by this author!

This is a light romance about two wealthy socialites in New York. The storyline is classic romantic comedy full of mistaken identities, miscommunication, and awkward, comical moments. It was a fun and easy read.

However, when I thought more carefully about this story, I struggled with the characters and their attitudes. I really struggle with romance where women are divided into ‘good girls’ worth dating/marrying and ‘sluts’ – gold diggers criticised for showing too much skin and having too much sex. Ruby and Bancroft’s attitude towards Brittany does the sisterhood no favours.

Beyond her bitchy jealousy, Ruby’s sense of entitlement makes her almost impossible to like. Just like far too many rich kids, she hates her family’s wealthy while still enjoying the perks. When she wanted to become an actress instead of joining the family business, her father only pays her rent on a small flat in a rough area. I think we were supposed to either admire her gumption for living there or feel some sort of sympathy for her – but honestly – first world problems much? The girl is completely oblivious to her privilege. Her family’s wealth gives her access to a social circles and financial support that most struggling actresses couldn’t dream of. When her father stopped paying her rent, Ruby couldn’t (wouldn’t?) support herself. Without her family name, she would have been living on her friends’ floors – not ferret sitting in an Upper West Side penthouse.

Bancroft is slightly more likeable. I struggled some with the way his family duty shapes his life. He was allowed a rugby career but after an injury, he hurried back to his family business. I kept wondering if Ruby’s pedigree influenced his feelings for her. Would he have dated a burlesque dancer from a poor family? Bancroft works for his money but seems equally oblivious to his immense privilege.

So yes. This is an easy and entertaining read. But when I started thinking about it, I found myself increasingly annoyed by the characters and their values.

Also Available in the Series

Book 2
Releases November 7th

Buy Links

Amazon US  ~  Amazon UK  ~  Amazon Au  ~  Amazon Ca
B&N  ~  Google Play  ~  iTunes  ~  Kobo
St. Martin's Press

Want a sneak peek into Hooking Up?
Click HERE to read Chapter One.

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

Connect with Helena

Facebook  ~  Twitter  ~  Google+  ~  Website  ~  Goodreads

Brought to you by

Reviewers on the Wicked Reads Review Team were provided a free copy of Shacking Up (Shacking Up #1) by Helena Hunting to read and review. Review copy purchased by the blog.

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