The Hating Game by Sally Thorne
Narrated by Katie Schorr
Standalone. Contemporary Romance.
The Hating Game by Sally Thorne has been on my radar for a while, but I never got a chance to read it. I was in the middle of it when the movie casting news came out I didn’t even know there was a movie, so I was even doubly glad that I was listening and LOVING this book!
Lucy and Josh work for a recently merged publishing house and they each work for the CEOs of the original companies. The culture of the 2 companies in the merge are complete opposites, but nobody is more opposite than Lucy and Josh. She is adorably sweet and cute and wants to be liked. He is a gorgeous asshole who never cracks a smile and lives a rigid, disciplined life. They are already rivals at work.
“I type my password: IHATEJOSHUA4EV@. My previous passwords have all been variations on how much I hate Joshua. For ever.”
When a new position is announced, both Josh and Lucy are the main candidates for the job. The rivalry ramps up a notch, and we are privy to the hating game between them. The whole office knows of their rivalry – they have both called HR on each other numerous times. But Lucy will not tolerate Josh ever beating her, and worse, whoever gets the promotion would be the other’s boss.
“I should mention that the ultimate aim of all our games is to make the other smile, or cry. It’s something like that. I’ll know when I win.”
It’s easy to hate Josh and love Lucy at first. And that is what the author intended with having only Lucy’s POV through the book. Had we known what Josh was thinking, the whole book would have been VERY different.
“What are you imagining? Your expression is filthy.”
“Strangling you. Bare hands.”
“So that’s your kink.”
“Only where you’re concerned.”
I love hate to love romances the most because banter is my favorite thing in a novel, and the Hating Game had a ton.
Once we get to know the good behind the Joshua Templeman facade, it was impossible to hate him. I looooovvved him!
“Stop calling me Shortcake.”
“Watching you pretend to hate that nickname is the best part of my day.”
If I wanted to pick apart the story, honestly there are a few things that don’t sit right with me, but overall I listened to the whole thing with a goofy smile on my face, loving every second. The pacing, the slow-burn, the character development, the dialog. All of it just worked perfectly.
“The first smile Joshua’s ever had in my presence is pressed against my lips.”
- I listened to the whole story with a goofy smile on my face.
- It was sweet, fun, sexy, and hit me in the feels.
- The characters were very realistic – they had real lives outside of each other.
- I love that Josh is perfect because he works his ass off at it, not just naturally like most heroes.
- Lucy’s dad – I loved his support for her and his names for Josh.
- Never felt like it tried too hard to be quirky and cute, it just was.
- Though I wish we got a little in the epilogue, having only Lucy’s POV really worked perfectly for this book.
- There were a couple of things that were built up throughout The Hating Game, yet never materialized in the story, like Josh going to his dream destination (I don’t want to spoil anything) and Lucy’s actual presentation. One major plot point was left unfinished.
- The end felt a little abrupt, in fact, the second half of the book didn’t have quite the same flow as the first half.
- No epilogue!? If ever a book needed one, this was it.
- I wish there was a way to have gotten a little of his POV, either through the epilogue or maybe a note. I love that we didn’t get it a lot, but just a hint would have been nice.
Katie Schorr could not have been more perfect for the role of Lucy, but she definitely needs speeding up. I loved her!
The Down & Dirty:
Rating: 4.5 Stars, 3.5 Heat