The Hating Game | By Sally Thorne
About the Author
Sally Thorne became a best selling author with her debut novel The Hating Game. It is now being made into a motion picture. The book was also one of the finalists of Goodreads Choice Award Romance category in 2016. Her second book 99 Percent Mine was published on January 2019.
Lucy Hutton and Joshua Templeman are professional rivals. Nope, not just a rivalry in profession their hatred extends to professional hatred games as they sit across each other in the office every day. Enter the opportunity of a promotion which only one of them might get, the other vows to leave the job. However, in an attempt to show professional attitude for the sake of the promotion, Lucy and Josh try to be civilized with each other. Once the ice starts melting, they discover that maybe this was altogether a different game they were playing.
Narrative and plot
I've always been a fan of the trope - Hate to Love. Needless to say, I've been rooting for the story even before I started reading it. It is always entertaining to have a pleasant voice narrating the story and Lucy Hutton was definitely a fiesty little feast.
Anger is a passionate emotion and when that is tranformed into love, sparks are expected to rise all over. Which is why I am a fan of the trope. The book starts strong rightly described by Lucy "Hating someone disturbingly seems similar to loving someone." The journey from hate to love started distinctly but it blurred somewhere in the middle.
Now, I did enjoy what happened in the book but something seemed missing. At first I thought it was the lack of a well-defined flipping point but then it became clear that they were attracted to each other for a long time. Perhaps more insight into Joshua's mind would have given it clarity. In the end, the book managed to clear up the sudden blur somehow.
Characters and Conflict
Two head strong personalities, professional rivals colliding against each other. Remember Rachel and Gavin from Friends? That was my first impression when I started the book. But Joshua and Lucy stood out by their heightened animosity and hatred towards each other. The way those feelings melt into attraction and eventually love is certainly fun and hot!
It is great to see that there are multiple conflicts. The characters had to deal with things other than romance and they were given enough time. The games throughout the story was fun and engaging. I would have loved to see more about their bosses. But this is the hating game between Joshua and Lucy. Hence the complete focus on these two and their relationship is understandable. One of the notable things is that the book points out that often hatred towards others stems from our own issues and experience in life rather than being about the other person.
In short this is a fun romantic read particularly during this time of the year. You won't be bored for sure. Lucy and Joshua are distinct characters and their banter is always fun. At some places the story drags a little bit but then by the end it is wrapped up nicely.