We’re continuing the string of romantic reads today with Little, Brown UK supplying all the love in the form of Helena Hunting’s The Good Luck Charm.
Lilah isn’t sure what hurt worse: the day Ethan left her to focus on his hockey career or the day he came back eight years later. He might think they can pick up just where they left off, but she’s no longer that same girl and never wants to be again.
Ethan wants his glory days back. And that includes having Lilah by his side. With her, he was magic. They were magic. All he has to do is make her see that.
Just when Lilah might finally be ready to let Ethan in, though, she finds out their reunion might have nothing to do with love and everything to do with improving his game. But Ethan’s already lost her once, and even if it costs him his career, he’ll do anything to keep from losing her again…
“NOTHING YOU SAY IS GOING TO CHANGE THE PAST.”
“IT COULD CHANGE THE FUTURE, THOUGH.”
Over the five years that I’ve been blogging about books, I’ve hardly made it a secret that multiple POV novels aren’t exactly my favourite. So cue my disappointment when I opened my copy of The Good Luck Charm to see the narrative was split between Lilah, formerly known as DJ, and Ethan. To me, dual first person POVs just ruin any chance of immersion.
It was my first Helena Hunting novel as well as my first foray into the trope of ‘second chance romance’, but I wasn’t all that impressed by either. The Good Luck Charm is like that best friend who keeps hooking up with her no good ex despite telling you that things are over and done with him. It’s just tiring, tedious, and quite frankly tragic.
I’m aware the general premise is about Lilah and Ethan giving their former romance another go, but it’s just so incredibly toxic that Hunting makes Lilah look like a mug throughout a good portion of the novel. You know when you just want to reach into a book and grab the leading heroine and shout ‘This is stupid!’, that was me reading The Good Luck Charm. Lilah spends much of the story being a pushover, and as someone who’s been in that position in the past, it’s just a little eye-rolling inducing that Hunting let it go on for so long, making her leading lady look foolish while offering us Ethan’s narrative. Yes, Lilah eventually sets boundaries and takes control of her life, but not after Hunting ensures she’s been entirely embarrassed by the people who supposedly care about her. I also hated how all it took was a pair of decent abs to win her over. I know I’ve been at a bloke’s beck and call for a lot less, but c’mon, Lilah! I was rooting for you! Set an example for me!
The fact that the story is largely sports related, namely hockey, probably didn’t work in its favour when it came to me. A quick Google tells me Hunting is a regular author of hockey/sports romance whereas a quick Google would probably tell you that, tennis aside, I have never been all that interested in the sporting world. Whenever my father changed the channel for a football match, I’d have to go upstairs because I couldn’t even stand to hear the game-play. It also probably doesn’t help that hockey isn’t a big deal at all where I’m from so a hockey romance was hardly going to sweep my off my feet.
On the whole, it was just a very ‘meh’ novel. The characters seemed rather empty and bland to me, there’s no real depth to them or their words. Lilah’s a nice gal, Ethan’s your stereotypical jock hot guy, and because Ethan’s the panty-dropping level of attractive, he doesn’t have to atone for his mistakes at all. I swear he is the embodiment of Danny from Love Island with how he relies on this ‘connection’ he has with Lilah. Oh my gosh, I felt a spark when our hands brushed – we’re obviously meant to be! Someone pass me a bucket.
This could easily turn into an essay about how much I hated Ethan and how he and his toxic chiseled abs were excused from getting called out because sexual chemistry, but The Good Luck Charm as a whole was just a little too problematic. So on that note, I guess it’s fairly obvious that I’ll be giving Hunting’s other work a miss as The Good Luck Charm failed to impress.