The Hating Game by Sally Thorne
Review,  Romance

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne – best hate-to-love workplace romance

The Hating Game is entertaining, sexy, adorable, and the best hate-to-love workplace romance that I recommend to fans of this genre.

best hate-to-love workplace romance

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne

Publication Date : August 9, 2016

Publisher : William Morrow 

Read Date : March 9, 2023

Genre : Romance

Page : 365

Rating: 5 out of 5.

Tea for this book : Indian Masala Chai


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.


hate-to-love workplace romance

The Hating Game is lovely, fun, and hot romance about two nemesis, Lucy and Joshua, falling for each other. There isn’t much that everyone hasn’t already said about this book so I will go straight into why I loved the book.

I absolutely loved the first line – “I have a theory. Hating someone feels disturbingly similar to being in love with them.” – It’s the perfect start of the book.

I loved the initial chapters introducing characters and the company they worked for, how the merger of Bexley and Gamin publishing companies transpired and brought Lucy and Joshua together in one office with desks facing each other, playing their silly office games that are fuelled more when their bosses announced a promotion for which Lucy and Joshua would compete and get the job based on their presentation. All the banters and competition took a turn when Lucy started having sexual dreams that involved Joshua.

It sets up the plot pretty well making me curious to see where their game will take them, who will get the promotion, who has to leave and how that will affect their relationship. Writing is gripping and entertaining with Lucy’s refreshing voice.

Lucy is lovely and charming who is liked by everyone except Joshua and she can’t figure out why he hates her which basically starts their game and competition which at some point seemed childish and I still liked reading that. She is too nice to say no or be firm and authoritative when necessary which leads people taking advantage of her niceness.

She is also a lonely person. She lost her friend because of merger and now she spent most of her time at the office which resulted in no relationships. When she gets close to Josh she can’t get enough of him. It comes out kind of clingy, silly, and crazy but at the same time it also made sense and I enjoyed her silliness.

It was amazing to see her stand up for herself and how her view towards Josh changed as she get to know him more. Lucy’s dilemma of how their relationship will work and her fear of losing another person close to her was realistic. Her obsession with smurf is cute.

Josh is my favorite. He is grumpy, mysterious, perfectionist, organized guy with a cold and difficult demanor. It was obvious very early in book that he fell for Lucy as soon as he saw her and didn’t know what to do with his feelings nor had the courage to voice it.

I loved him when he took care of Lucy when she got ill. It is one of my favorite scenes in the book. It also showed there is more to him than it appeared and once his story was revealed, I loved him even more. It was obvious to see why he looked emotionally detached. I hated his father for how he treated him and I was surprised no one actually understand him and stood up for him until Lucy did.

Romance is mind-blowing. I read workplace romance before and it has been hit or miss for me but the author made this so perfect and set a benchmark for this trope. I absolutely love hate-to-love trope, it makes the banter between characters fun and entertaining and here it was the best.

Chemistry is sizzling, hot and sexy with lots of sexual tension. I loved every scene of Lucy and Josh together. There are many adorable moments. It was crazy to read all kind of games they played throughout the book. I actually made a list of them. (what can I say, Josh and Lucy are contagious!)

This book is the king of tropes. There are all amazing tropes and they are so very well written. The family drama at the wedding makes a perfect climax. I enjoyed knowing Josh and his family more in this part and it is amazing how that brought Lucy closer to him and made her realize she loves him. The end is perfect.

Overall, The Hating Game is entertaining, sexy and adorable hate-to-love workplace romance that I recommend to fans of this genre.

I also watched the movie right after finishing the book. I loved the cast in the movie, Austin and Lucy are perfect, but let’s just say the book is far much better than the movie.

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Hi, I'm Yesha, an Indian book blogger. Avid and eclectic reader who loves to read with a cup of tea. Not born reader but I don't think I’m going to stop reading books in this life. “You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me.”


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