Release Date: February 28, 2019
Received From: Review copy from the author
She set out to explore the world and found love along the way.
Vivian Ng is as experienced as flight attendants come. Taking charge and getting stuff done has always been her MO. When her father pushes her to give up her Asian routes in favor of flights to Europe, she’s nervous about the change, but her skills have never failed her before.
Flight attendant Marco Chang is charming and he knows it. Growing up as an immigrant with absentee parents, he learned how to win people over with a smile and a sexy accent. But being popular never meant his heart was available.
When Vivian and Marco find themselves working the same flight to Rome, Marco is immediately smitten. Vivian is smart, competent, kicks ass and takes names. Vivian’s not as impressed. Marco’s cute, sure, but he’s helpful to a fault and she doesn’t need some guy telling her how to do her job.
As they hop back and forth across the Atlantic, the romance of European cities works its magic. But if there’s any hope of their budding attraction taking off, she’ll need to let go and he’ll need to let her in.
Content Warning: This book contains a scene of sexual harassment.
SEXUALITY: bisexual, heterosexual
ROMANTIC ORIENTATION: biromantic, heteroromantic
TROPES: coworkers to lovers, workplace romance, dislike at first sight, friends to lovers
TAGS: adult, contemporary, romance, queer romance, queer characters, Chinese characters, Asian characters, Chinese Peruvian character, immigrant character
WARNINGS: sexual harassment, groping, cancer mention, parental illness mention, parental death mention, mental illness (panic attack), physical injury, ableism, hospitalization, hospital visit, surgery mention
This book was fun and fluffy, as promised, with just a touch of angst!
One thing I really enjoyed was the setting! It’s not often that you read a book with a flight attendant as the main character, let alone both of them, and it was very interesting to read about the processes and experiences they go through. Additionally, the excursions that Vivian and Marco go on in their few days between flights were so wonderful! It was so great to see them able to relax and have fun, to be silly and just hang out exploring.
I also liked Vivian and Marco very much, as well as the secondary character Clare. Even in so few pages, all of them had well developed, individualized personalities and characteristics! Marco is a bit like an overeager puppy, trailing along and trying to help how he can, while Vivian is more like a cat, who needs help only when she wants it and has a bit of a prickly exterior, built up over time through her experiences. And Clare was just a lovely coworker and friend who clearly cared about both of them.
The one big thing I was uncomfortable with was the behavior of Vivian’s dad at the end of the novel when they’re all traveling to Peru together. Throughout the story, it’s talked about, several times, how female presenting flight attendants are often sexually harassed, both verbally and physically. Yet, at the end of the novella, Vivian’s dad in turn verbally sexually harasses multiple flight personnel, and other than Vivian briefly chastising him, it’s essentially blown off. It just made me uncomfortable and left me finishing the story with a bad taste in my mouth.
Also, I would’ve preferred a longer format since the “I love you” came really fast, and there was practically no time between Vivian’s turn around from disliking Marco to liking him as a friend and becoming interested in him romantically and sexually.
But overall, I enjoyed the story and continue to enjoy Hudson Lin’s writing.
Hudson Lin was raised by conservative immigrant parents and grew up straddling two cultures with ofttimes conflicting perspectives on life. Instead of conforming to either, she has sought to find a third way that brings together the positive elements of both.
Having spent much of her life on the outside looking in, Hudson likes to write stories about outsiders who fight to carve out their place in society, and overcome everyday challenges to find love and happily ever afters.
When not engrossed in a story, Hudson knits, drinks tea, and works the 9 to 5 in the beautiful city of Toronto, Canada.