[678]: The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

25883848 The Hating Game by Sally Thorne
Stand Alone
William Morrow | August 9th, 2016
Source: Bought
Contemporary Romance | Adult Fiction
Rating 5 out of 5 Stars

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.

I was stacking all the books that were on my bedroom floor neatly when I decided to skim through its pages. Hours later, I was grinning like a fool. It was so good, so sweet, and so funny. I mean, I’ve known a few people who swore how good this was but I was not ready to be floored as much as I have. It’s the perfect romcom; lovely characters bright with chemistry, a breathtaking romance with humour and a pinch of poignant sadness.

Battle of the Sexes

Lucy Hutton has always hated Josh Templeman’s guts. He’s a very regimented jerk who saw her as nothing but an amusing little woman with a penchant for wild colours and red lipstick. His total opposite, considering he wears a plethora of uniformed dress shirts for every day of the week. Their one-upmanship and skirmishes on the daily give her life. It’s the source of her motivation, aggravation and oddly enough, her addiction. But their competition is about to reach another level of insanity as they both vie for the same Chief Operating Officer position.  If Lucy wins, she becomes Josh’s boss and if he wins, she has no choice but to quit. Because there’s no way she’s going to work for the man who threatened to “work her so fucking hard” if he wins.

I love this book so much! I have this thing for short heroines rocking the retro look and Lucy personified that ideal. She’s a spitfire who stood up to Josh even if she was a softie to everyone else. Working in the publishing industry has always been her dream so she worked incredibly hard day to please everyone but Joshua.

Josh, on the other hand, is a massive oaf that perfectly contrasts Lucy’s diminutive posture. They’re opposite in every which way but once they let chemistry does its magic, they’re combustible! Love, love their witty banter, their playful provocations (also known as flirting), and the way they cared and worried about each other without the other knowing.

On the surface, these two are all about fun and games. But hidden just beneath their skin lives a loneliness brought on by family estrangement. Josh couldn’t make his father happy no matter what he does. He lives under the shadow of his father’s discontentment and constant disappointment. So he stopped trying and distanced himself from his family to his mother’s heartbreak.

Lucy, on the other hand, was loved. Her parents wanted everything for her but her dream took her far away from them. They’re still close, though no matter the distance. She has no friends, and because she’s the executive assistant to one of the partners, her officemates tend to keep her at an arm’s length. They dealt with loneliness the only way they could: denial. Honestly, no one could be more deserving of each other than these two. Josh is very serious, more often cranky but far more the asshole character that’s been known to grace the pages of a romance novel. Lucy balances Josh’s seriousness perfectly. She’s very quirky, smart and funny. She’s just lovely all around.

The Hating Game is by far the best contemporary romance I’ve read this year. If you’ve ever considered reading this after all the five-star reviews on Goodreads, well, leave your doubts aside. The majority of those reviewers are spot on. Sally Thorne is a brilliant, brand new voice in this genre.



  • Yay! You found the perfect read! I love it when you can get blown away like this! Josh and Lucy sound like fun, but deal with some serious issues. Great review girl! 👏👏

  • I’ve heard so much good things about this! I’m picking this up real soon 😀

  • Sounds pretty great Joy. I am adding it to my list, of course. Great review as usual 🙂

  • Every now and again all I need in life is a good romcom kind of read which is hilarious and cute and romantic all at once. This book sounds so perfect, especially as you’d gone in with the intention of briefly scanning it and then fell in love with it. Thanks for putting it on my radar!

  • I’m sooo glad you liked this one! I thought it was super cute and definitely a stellar contemporary romance that was released this year. 🙂 I’m so glad to see a lot of my blogger friends picking it up!

    – Aila @ Happy Indulgence

  • Wow, I’m glad you enjoyed this. I don’t read romance much at all, but this seems like a book that may make me re-examine the genre. Great Review!
    Tori @ In Tori Lex

  • I need this book in my life. I can’t tell you how desperate I am for a funny, feel good romance right now and the few lately that I’ve picked up, I’ve put down just as quickly. It’s infuriating. The banter, the competition, but the underlying care they have for one another. My heart aches with waaaaaant! Wonderful review Joy, going to nab a copy on Amazon and set it aside for next weekend <3

  • Omg I downloaded a copy to this to review on Netgalley and totally forgot about it! I don’t usually read much contemporary romances, but this one totally caught my eye. While I can tell that it’ll go in a very cliche and predictable manner, I’m still so excited to meet these characters! Lucy sounds absolutely adorable and Josh…well, I’m sure I’ll come to like him too 😉 Can’t wait to kick back and give this one a go. Lovely review Joy xx

  • Woo-hoo, I just got this one from the library yesterday and I’m starting it tomorrow. SO freaking excited for it. I need a book like this right now.

    Nereyda│ Nick & Nereyda’s Infinite Booklist

  • Jazmen

    I was just looking at this somewhere, and I thought about getting it. Too bad I didn’t. Sounds like a winner.

  • Sara Walker

    I have the audio of this book. I am going to listen to it next week. I have heard nothing but good things. I am so glad you liked it. I loved your review.

  • I love books with tons of verbal banter! I’m so happy you picked this up and loved it, Joy!

  • This does sound like a fun and entertaining read! So retro like pin-up girl dressing? I love them!

  • Aw 😀 Gorgeous review sweetie. <3 SO glad you loved this one 🙂 Probably not for me, but I'm curious. Books that are funny are pretty awesome 🙂 So glad it made you happy. Yay 🙂

  • This one sounds like a fun, light read. I’d never heard of it but I’m going to check it out.

  • It makes me positively giddy every time I see this book get some love. It deserves it! <3

  • I’ve been looking forward to reading this book for a long time now, but I didn’t know it was that good!
    It sounds like a fun and cute read. Can’t wait to read it!

  • THIS WAS SO GOOD, I am SO happy you read this Joy 😀 it’s a great way to get back into reading

  • Hate is fun…that sounds wrong, hmmm

  • This sounds adorable! I’m picturing the characters as British, but that might be too much to ask…

  • Oh my gosh I love these kinds of stories! I’ve heard amazing things about this book already. I’ll have to get a copy immediately.

  • This book sounds so good! Glad you enjoyed it 😀 I love it when I randomly pick up a book and skim through the page and then hours later I’m like GOSH I LOVE THIS BOOK. A LOT.

  • This is actually the first I’ve heard of this one so clearly I’m out of the loop but it sounds like I totally need to check this one out! The dynamic between the two seems great!

  • Okay, I’m definitely going to download this one!

  • shootingstarsmag

    I’m so glad to see you loved this one too. I keep reading amazing things about it as well, and I must get my hands on a copy!


  • This would have been a book I would have glanced and and passed by… however… yea, you aren’t the only one who lets me know I need to read it. I love the sound of Lucy. The romance really makes me curious. Hm… It’s about time I read a contemporary romance. This may be the one this year! 😀

  • Yassssss! Loved your review of this one and I agree with all of it. Absolutely all of it. This was such a great book!

  • Jasprit

    I’m so so happy to see your 5 star rating for this book Joy, I have only heard the best things about this book, and I’m the biggest fan of love hate relationships, especially when done well as this one! I must get my hands on a copy asap! 🙂

  • I keep hearing AMAZING things about this book, but I’m actually kind of nervous to read it. I really need to though, because everyone says it’s so fun. Glad you loved it.

  • I’m not a huge romance fan, but this read sounds too cute! Like a TV show I’d definitely watch lol. Going to add this to my ever-growing TBR list!

  • Jenny @ Supernatural Snark

    I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about this book Joy! It’s on my shelf just waiting for me to dive in, and I think it needs to move its way up my list. There’s little I love more than a hate to love romance:)

  • Fantastic review!! I’m happy to see how much you enjoyed this one. I bought it when it released, and now I need to read it asap!! I may just make it priority this weekend for Dewey’s Readathon. Sounds like a good one to get sucked into all day.

  • kindlemom1

    Okay this seriously sounds like so much fun, I need to add it Joy because who doesn’t love a fun read? Wonderful review!

  • Keertana @ Ivy Book Bindings

    I’m so glad that this book is getting SO MUCH love! I really enjoyed it, but I didn’t love it, for some reason or the other. But still, glad this was such a huge hit for you, Joy! 🙂

  • I’m not going to read your review until I read this story, but I love seeing your 5 star rating! I’m in line for an audio-copy through the library and my turn should be coming up soon. 🙂

  • Oh sometimes it is nice to order lol you can find some gems. It’s great to see you had such a great time!