Sometimes bad books happen to good readers, and for me this had been the trend for some time. My kindle was quickly being filled with awful book after awful book. I was in a funk, and couldn’t seem to get out of it. Luckily for me, Christmas came early in the form of a fantastic book by newcomer Sally Thorne. I stumbled across The Hating Game simply because I was super behind on my Christmas shopping, and found myself easily distracted by a book suggestion.
Honestly, neither the title nor the cover art pulled me in too much, but I found myself clicking to read the synopsis. I didn’t want to read too much in case I did purchase the book. Upon seeing the $7.99 price tag, I was almost deterred, because I read so many books and this book was exceptionally high. I was about to leave the page, when I remembered that I had some digital credits and would end up paying only $4.99. The universe was trying to tell me something, I knew it, so I one-clicked it. As I hit purchase, I sent up a silent prayer to the book gods, and hoped I wouldn’t regret my midnight purchase.
Over the following days as my Amazon packages began to appear, I remembered that I had purchased this book, and decided to start reading it during lunch. Not only was I late getting back to work, but I was also late to work the following morning because I had stayed up way past my bedtime reading. Sally Thorne had intended this to be a short story for a friend, but somehow found herself with a fantastic full-length novel. Before she began writing she asked said friend to give her one word that she would use as inspiration. Nemesis was that word. The title is a clever play on the word nemesis.
Lucy Hutton is a cute pushover who works with her arch nemesis Joshua Templeman in extremely close quarters. At first, some of the interactions between Lucy and Joshua seem a bit weird almost creepy. The truth is the reader isn’t intended to like much less love Joshua. I know I wasn’t fond of him. But as I continued to read I not only began to like him, I quickly fell in love with him as much as I loved Lucy. His “creepiness” wasn’t creepy, it was a relationship built over time, a relationship that was for much of the time one sided. Then turned into a beautiful kind of truce between two nemeses.
Now let’s talk about the other kind of creep, the bad kind of creep. A few weeks ago my friend Valerie received a Facebook message from a man she had never seen and didn’t know. The message was, “Hi, I know this may seem creepy, but I’m just very good at figuring things out. I always see you at the parking deck and I know most people that park here typically work at the Chase building so what I did was Instagram searched Chase and literally your picture popped up with some of your friends or coworkers, like the first pictures literally. So I clicked the picture and your Instagram name showed up and this is how I found your name (God I know this looks so bad smh), but I just really want to talk to you because you are a dope looking lady. Anyway, so I searched your name on Facebook and “again” your profile was the first one to show up; so I just want you to know that I’m not a stalker I’m just smart and I piece things together extremely well, and that is how I found you. So sorry if this weirds you out, in 2016, I know people are so paranoid about everything but I hope you understand that I simply took a chance on making myself look bad just to be able to possibly contact you, (aside from leaving a note on your car). You know the saying “no risk, no reward” I hope you reply to this and not “block” me for taking a shot in the dark.” (Picture Below)
Now, when my friend Valerie sent this to me I reread it at least 3 times before I could even respond to her text message. “Dafaq?” was literally the only thing that came to mind. Because seriously, in what universe would a man think that a woman would look at this message and not think it was creepy. I mean, not only did he look her up on Instagram, he decided to dig deeper until he found her on Facebook and wrote to her. She didn’t reply to him, and I encouraged her not to. Something about the fact that he was not only watching her at work, but proceeded to creep on the internet for more information scared the crap out of me. She agreed with me that the whole situation made her feel very uncomfortable. I was wondering if I was being paranoid, so we decided to ask other people their thoughts.
After a few days the vote was not unanimous (insert my shock here), it was ultimately agreed that yes, this was in fact more creepy than flattering. However, one of the people who didn’t think it was creepy asked a question that stunned me. She asked, “Well is he good looking?” I stopped and thought about this for some time and wondered why the in the hell that mattered? Would it be ok if the guy looked more “boy next door”? Because the truth was I couldn’t look past the fact that this guy’s actions were slightly terrifying. His intentions were unclear, we honestly didn’t know what his reaction would be when she didn’t reply. We didn’t know if he would approach her and tell her that he was the one who had messaged her and question her as to why she hadn’t replied.
So back to The Hating Game, at the beginning, Joshua Templeman’s character did not give me all the warm fuzzy feelings that I am used to getting when reading a romance. But I think the hilarious dynamic between these two is why I loved Joshua Templeman and this book so much! Before I give away any spoilers, I will just say that this book was by far one of my favorite books of 2016 and dare I say it, one of my favorite books of all time. So do yourself a favor and look past the price tag, and one-click this bad boy. I promise you won’t regret it.