I’ve read a lot of Christina Lauren this year—sue me! This has been a year where my favourite writing duo have had exactly what I’ve wanted to read: light, funny contemporary romance that will help me get through this horrid year. Josh + Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating is one of their older books, but I’m slowly working my way through their whole catalogue. I’ve come to expect quite a lot from them, and I’m constantly surprised when yet another one of their stories is a satisfying read.
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’m going to keep this one short and sweet: As per usual, Christina Lauren didn’t disappoint. The characters in this book were so much fun! I especially love that Hazel is such a free spirit and has learned to be who she is without exception. Josh and Hazel got to be friends before they became anything else, too, which was refreshing to read about. I laughed out loud a few times, and couldn’t put the book down. Loved it!
“I know I’m like Pig-Pen in Charlie Brown, and I have chaos around me, but it’s like he doesn’t even care. He doesn’t need me to change or pretend to be someone else. He’s my person. He’s my best friend.”—Christina Lauren, Josh + Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating
Thank you to Alysa Bajenaru on Unsplash for the featured photo.