Welcome to my stop on the blog tour for Christina Lauren’s latest, Josh & Hazels’ Guide to Not Dating! I loved this book so much I’ve read it twice now!
Josh & Hazel's Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren
Genres: Adult, Contemporary, Romance
Publication date: September 4, 2018
Publisher: Gallery Books
Format: eARC, 320 pages
How I got it: From the publisher
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | iTunes
Hazel Camille Bradford knows she’s a lot to take—and frankly, most men aren’t up to the challenge. If her army of pets and thrill for the absurd don’t send them running, her lack of filter means she’ll say exactly the wrong thing in a delicate moment. Their loss. She’s a good soul in search of honest fun.
Josh Im has known Hazel since college, where her zany playfulness proved completely incompatible with his mellow restraint. From the first night they met—when she gracelessly threw up on his shoes—to when she sent him an unintelligible email while in a post-surgical haze, Josh has always thought of Hazel more as a spectacle than a peer. But now, ten years later, after a cheating girlfriend has turned his life upside down, going out with Hazel is a breath of fresh air.
Not that Josh and Hazel date. At least, not each other. Because setting each other up on progressively terrible double blind dates means there’s nothing between them...right?
I received a complimentary copy of this book for review consideration. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
I was excited about Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating from the very minute I first saw the cover and read the blurb. I always love Christina Lauren’s books. There’s a reason the duo is one of my go-to authors. When I had the chance to read it in advance of release, I was over the moon. I quickly jumped in and read it in a mere matter of a few hours. I fell 1000% in love with it, too. In fact, I loved it so much that I read it twice before release. Josh and Hazel definitely found a way into my heart and I know I’ll be rereading this book for a long time to come. It was just that good.
Often I’ve found quirky characters in books come off as if they’re trying too hard. That wasn’t the case with Hazel at all. She was just … Hazel. I loved her because of it, too. She made me laugh and smile and basically want to hug her and be her friend. She’s undoubtedly one of the most quirky characters I’ve ever met in a book and, truthfully, she was a breath of fresh air. Where she fun and spirited, Josh was more steadfast and reserved. They complemented each other perfectly. I loved how they brought out each other’s personalities without ever seeking to change the other. They totally accepted each other as they were, which made their friendship and what came next all the more authentic. Their story has a bit of a slow burn — as you might expect as they’re going on double dates (with the wrong people) through a large portion of the book. But, really, it was pretty obvious from the start — to everyone but them apparently — this pair was meant to be a thing. I couldn’t have shipped them harder if I tried.
Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating was utterly swoony and adorable and I loved every single thing about it. It’s one of those books I read with a giant, swoony smile on my face. And yes, I did hug my iPad when I finished reading. Both times. In addition to the swoons and laughs, Josh & Hazel also brought the sexy. Whew. I was definitely fanning myself. There was also a plot point that hit VERY close to home and could’ve been disastrous for me emotionally, but it wasn’t. All it did was make me relate to Hazel — and love her — that much more. I don’t like to play favorites when it comes to my favorite authors and their books, but I can’t help but say THIS BOOK is my new favorite CL story. It had literally everything I wanted in a book.
The way Emily describes it: when I meet someone I love, I become an octopus and wind my tentacles around their heart, tight and tighter until they can’t deny they love me just the same.
“I tend to be too chatty, too silly, too exuberant, too random, too eager. Too Hazel-y.”
I should be glad that she’s the same Hazel she was when she woke up yesterday. But I’m not the same Josh.
“I’m sorry for ending things, and making you feel that you weren’t worth my time long term. I’m sorry I couldn’t let you move on afterward. I’m sorry I used you as an escape whenever things got hard in other areas of my life.”
What’s YOUR favorite Christina Lauren book?