★BOOK REVIEW★The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

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My rating

I loved this book! Hilarious and ridiculously adorable, I couldn’t put it down and kept a grin on my face from start to finish.

Book Infos

Nemesis (n.) 1) An opponent or rival whom a person cannot best or overcome.
2) A person’s undoing
3) Joshua Templeman

Lucy Hutton has always been certain that the nice girl can get the corner office. She’s charming and accommodating and prides herself on being loved by everyone at Bexley & Gamin. Everyone except for coldly efficient, impeccably attired, physically intimidating Joshua Templeman. And the feeling is mutual.

Trapped in a shared office together 40 (OK, 50 or 60) hours a week, they’ve become entrenched in an addictive, ridiculous never-ending game of one-upmanship. There’s the Staring Game. The Mirror Game. The HR Game. Lucy can’t let Joshua beat her at anything—especially when a huge new promotion goes up for the taking.

If Lucy wins this game, she’ll be Joshua’s boss. If she loses, she’ll resign. So why is she suddenly having steamy dreams about Joshua, and dressing for work like she’s got a hot date? After a perfectly innocent elevator ride ends with an earth shattering kiss, Lucy starts to wonder whether she’s got Joshua Templeman all wrong.

Maybe Lucy Hutton doesn’t hate Joshua Templeman. And maybe, he doesn’t hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game.

Author : Sally Thorne
Title : The Hating Game
Series : –

Number of pages : 384
Publisher : William Morrow Paperbacks
Release Date :  August 9, 2016
Genre : Romantic Comedy.

My Review

I’m twenty-eight years old and it seems I’ve fallen through the cracks of heaven and hell and into purgatory. A kindergarten classroom. An asylum.

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I check Joshua, who is glowering at me with contempt. I stare back. Now we are playing the Staring Game.

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne was just what the doctor ordered to lift my mood last Friday. I’ve been eyeing this little nugget of happy feels for a couple of weeks, weighing up and down my curiosity for it ( as everyone was talking about it ) and the price it’s listed at. For a debut novel, I’ll be honest, $9.99* for an ebook was truly daunting.
What If I don’t like it?
*note: the kindle edition has now dropped to $7.99 on AMZ.

He’s currently copying every move I make. It’s the Mirror Game. To the casual observer it wouldn’t be immediately obvious; he’s as subtle as a shadow. But not to me. Each movement of mine is replicated on his side of the office on a slight time delay.

So I decided to wait until a few reviews would turn up to make up my mind… And seeing as a lot of people on social media was raving about it, I decided to order the paperback (same price as the ebook, at least if I didn’t like it I could still give it to someone who could enjoy it.)

And guess what? $9.99* suddenly felt like the last of my worries, as only a few pages in I started snorting at the heroine antics. Then laughing out loud at her complete crazy behavior.

I LOVED The Hating Game!

-‘I didn’t ask for you advice, Joshua. I get so mad at myself, letting you drag me down to your level all the time.’
-‘And what level are you imagining me dragging you down to? Horizontal?’

I’ll be honest this book wasn’t perfect. Yet, I gave it 5 stars, why?

Because in the end, after all the pages were turned, I felt good, happy, laughed a lot, and I just couldn’t let go of Lucy and Josh and their mind games. The author of this debut novel managed to entertain me without a fail and made it damn hard to put the book down

-‘Shortcake, if we were flirting you’d know about it.’
-‘Because I’d be traumatized?’
-‘Because you’d be thinking about it later on, lying in bed.’
-‘Been imagining my bed, have you?’
-‘I bet it’s a very small bed.’

I was taken hostage by Lucy Hutton’s neurotic obsession toward her work nemesis, Joshua Templeman. Hate, love, infatuation?
I fell in love with her brand of crazy. The book is told in her POV and I felt like I was trapped in her snarky world. The things she would focus and delve on were ludicrously funny.

-‘Stop calling me Shortcake.’
-‘Watching you pretend to hate that nickname is the best part of my day.’

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Underneath these button-up shirts, Joshua could be relatively featureless or ripped like Superman. It’s a mystery.

The story itself is pretty centered on Lucy and Joshua’s mind games at the office, almost in a behind closed doors way, letting very little place to any other kind of plot or even to character’s development. It didn’t bother me too much in the end, because the main attraction for me was to be able to peek into Lucy’s neurotic mind and contemplate all the ways she was obsessing about Josh while trying to come up with new tactics to antagonize him. All in the name of the office Hating Game, of course.

I sit in his chair and look at everything through his eyes. His chair is so high my toes don’t touch the ground. I wiggle my butt a little deeper into the leather. It feels completely obscene.

Fooled by herself with their mind games and not helped from being such a naive person, Lucy forgot how and why the Hating Game ever started to begin with. Because it was clear from the start that Lucy gave too much importance and time to Joshua not to care.

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I have never seen him smile, nor have I seen his face look anything but blank, bored, surly, suspicious, watchful, resentful.
I wish I could use my thumbs to pull his mood into a huge deranged grin. As the police drag me out in handcuffs I’ll be screeching, Smile goddamn you.

From Lucy’s perspective, Joshua was most definitely someone to hate, a total jerk, yet, I couldn’t help myself but root for him and Lucy to get over that hate bubble they got themselves trapped into. It was obvious the two of them shared more than some office hostility. And oh how I enjoyed the way the author eased them both into something else! It was slow burningly sweet, awkward and charming. Without any surprises, we’ll find out Joshua is just about the perfect man, and not the asshole depicted through Lucy’s misguided eyes.

There’s patience and kindness beneath his asshole face. Human decency. Humor. That smile.

As I said above, The Hating Game wasn’t perfect, I could start and nitpick on a few little details but since I laughed so much and kept a goofy grin for the duration of my reading time, I’d like to think this book was a success for me. It was ridiculously adorable!

I’m looking forward to read what this author has in store for us next, and will definitely recommend this little slice of heaven to anyone in the mood for a light read. Doctor Josh recommends it.

Author Bio

b14ozd9pmps-_ux250_Sally Thorne lives in Canberra, Australia, and spends her days writing funding submissions and drafting contracts (yawn!) so it’s not surprising that after hours she climbs into colorful fictional worlds of her own creation. Sally believes that romance readers are always searching for intensity in their next favorite book—and it isn’t always so easy to find. The Hating Game is her first novel.

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