book club

Book Club: The Hating Game

By Marni Dixit June 1, 2017
The Hating Game

Welcome back to Smooth Book Club, where we read The Hating Game by Sally Thorne.

This month, our book-loving team read Sally Thorne’s sexy romantic comedy The Hating Game (Hachette).

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 forty (ok, fifty or sixty) 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.

The Hating Game

Our thoughts:

“I’m about to make a big statement: The Hating Game is the most enjoyable book I’ve read all year. Yep, it’s that good. I really enjoyed seeing the relationship between Lucy and Josh evolve throughout the story and didn’t want to put it down once I reached a certain point in the first 100 pages (those who have read it know exactly which one I mean). 

“It’s funny, heartwarming and the perfect book to cuddle up with while it’s cold outside. Be prepared for some hilarious (and adorable) one-liners. Sally Thorne has really excelled with this slow-burn rom-com story, and I wouldn’t be surprised if I picked it up again in the near future!”

- Marni

“The Hating Game is the epitome of ‘chick lit’ and it serves its target audience well. The book is a quick read with a funny, sexy and romantic storyline that will hook you in quickly. I found myself rooting for the novel’s protagonist Lucy almost immediately (although her pig-headedness was frustrating at times) and while yes, you can pick where this story is going to take you pretty early on, because of the charming way in which it’s been written, you don’t mind being taken along for the ride.

“Sally Thorne has created a serious page-turner that is perfect for lazy days spent on the couch and I’d recommend it for anyone wanting to escape into a cheeky, but no less heart-warming, love story.”

- Steph

"Confession: I am the worst book club member of all time. The Hating Game sat next to my bed for ages, and while everyone was discussing Lucy and Joshua’s er, ’thing' I was still on chapter two’s vintage Smurf delivery. 

"But once I finally got over my starting-another-book phobia, I realised that a) books aren’t scary and b) it’s actually really good.

"Equal parts chic lit and awkward romance, The Hating Game a less controversial version of Fifty Shades of Grey but with more spreadsheets, deadlines and HR logs.

"After reading chapter one (and bragging to the whole book club that "yes, I’ve actually started"), I walked into the office feeling more executive assistant Lucy than digital sub-editor Cass. I wore a brighter shirt than usual, created a word doc called, 'HR File' and despite being the token married and preggers woman, started scanning the room for Joshuas and sparking conversations with couriers.  

"This is one of those books that you literally can’t put down (unless you actually have work to do), and despite its title there’s a whole lot more love in it than you’d first think.

"My rating? 8 (out of 10) unread emails."

- Cassie

Find out more about the book here.

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Image: Not Gary Cooper/Instagram