The Hating Game by Sally Thorne


Are you interested in reading this book with your book club or having a “The Hating Game” themed party?  Check out my companion post to this review in Books & Baking.

official blurb

Nemesis (n.) 1) An opponent or rival whom a person cannot best or overcome. 2) A person’s undoing 3) Joshua Templeman. Lucy Hutton and Joshua Templeman hate each other. Not dislike. Not begrudgingly tolerate. Hate. And they have no problem displaying their feelings through a series of ritualistic passive aggressive maneuvers as they sit across from each other, executive assistants to co-CEOs of a publishing company. Lucy can’t understand Joshua’s joyless, uptight, meticulous approach to his job. Joshua is clearly baffled by Lucy’s overly bright clothes, quirkiness, and Pollyanna attitude. Now up for the same promotion, their battle of wills has come to a head and Lucy refuses to back down when their latest game could cost her her dream job…But the tension between Lucy and Joshua has also reached its boiling point, and Lucy is discovering that maybe she doesn’t hate Joshua. And maybe, he doesn’t hate her either. Or maybe this is just another game.

my blurb!
The perfect romance novel with love to hate you and hate to love you feelings screaming out of every page.

5 out of 5

First let me tell you – this is a 5 out of 5 romance novel! It IS a romance novel filled with steamy scenes. So if you don’t like romance novels- even though it’s 5 out of 5 stars, this book isn’t for you.

what i liked
I LOVED the trope. The whole – I hate this person, oh snap I like this person thing. Very enjoyable to read for me. I like that storyline so much that without the steamy scenes, I would’ve added this book to required reading fiction.
I read this book in 24 hours. I was loving every minute of it.
I am BRAND NEW to the whole romance novel scene. In fact, this is my fourth ever romance novel. But in my limited experience I think it did everything a romance novel should do! Solid love trope? Check. Characters you want to fight for? Check. Steamy love scenes. Check. Wondering how the book with end the whole time? Check.
I loved Josh our main guy.  He’s smart and gorgeous and has a strong scheme game.
I loved Lucinda- shout out to the awesome name choice by the way- her perspective throughout the book was hilarious.  Her train of thought was scatterbrained, unreliable and true to herself.  She wore amazing red lipstick throughout the book and she definitely influenced me to up my lipstick game.
(Update: since writing this review I have gone back and reread this book bringing my total times read to THREE – and a half… okay I started it again last night – times!)
You guys, I enjoyed this book so much that I joined the authors facebook group – the Flamethrowers.  And I don’t even have a facebook account! That’s right, I used my husbands facebook account to join this romance novelists book club.  To say I am obsessed is an understatement.

what i didn't like

Nothing! I loved it!

when to read
Really, anytime because this is a required read. But especially when you’re in a rut at your job and want to be inspired to try more.

while reading you should
Eat: cake
Play: Paintball
Watch: the smurfs
Listen to: Breathe In by Frou Frou

if you would like to buy

Click here: The Hating Game: A Novel

DuxSignature smallercopy

18 thoughts on “The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

      1. There’s a movie?? My interest will depend on the rating. I don’t like explicit romances and had a hard time getting anyone to be straight with me on this one, and ended up (shocker) not enjoying those parts. I don’t want to see a 50 Shades-esque movie, but would be thrilled with a Rom-Com!

        Liked by 1 person

      2. what would you rate this one for a steam level? I had that hardest time rating it! but I ended up with a 3 steam out of 5? I’ve read a few since that I couldn’t even finish and those were total 5 steams. So this seems so mild by comparison- but i don’t know if I would’ve said that or not when I was just starting to try out this genre! It makes it hard to rate that! So ya, totally interested in your rating! Also- yes I’m interested in romcom only- although i never read or saw 50 shades. didn’t seem like my style haha

        Liked by 1 person

      3. I’ve never read anything more explicit than Empire of Storms, so that’s a 5 for me, just to inform. I would have put The Hating Game at a 4 or 4+ steam? Like I said, I’m not at ALL into explicit, so I’ve typically avoided the romance genre altogether.

        Liked by 1 person

  1. This book definitely made me realize that I am way more of a romcom watcher than I am a reader. Which was kind of a nice discovery. So, I would 100% watch this movie, but would only give it about a three for reading. The characters were awesome. I really loved their personalities and there were some really funny scenes that I appreciated. I just didn’t buy the whole hating thing. Joshua admitted he always loved her, but Lucy made it sound throughout the whole thing like she was just not able to separate him from the hate she had for him. Like, I felt like Sally Thorne could’ve ditched half of the sex scenes and elaborated more on why Lucy hated him so much.
    I also was not a big fan of the steam. It took up way too much of the book and really weakened the story IMO. like, you thought you hated each other until you had an erotic dream/got all turned on by a short dress and then suddenly life changed? I just didn’t think the book had much substance and could have had more development without adding all of the sex stuff. BUT as a movie it would be awesome. And I, like you, now want to wear lipstick.


    1. I could totally see all of your points!
      Also, I love how differently we all rank steam levels too! this book was SO mild compared to a lot of romance novels that I picked up. So I ranked it a three steam! But I also totally wouldn’t recommend it to high schoolers or anything haha
      Also, I did sometimes find the book formulaic when it should have gone deeper. But I loved it despite it all!


      1. Totally agree on the ranking being different. I’m sure my baseline for steam is super low comparatively. I think it made me realize that I just like romcoms in the movie because I definitely didn’t feel like this was a page turner at all. I do, however, want to call my kids “shortcake” now. I think it’s super adorable

        Liked by 1 person

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