REVIEW: Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren

by - 1:30 PM

“I can say without question I’ve honestly never known anyone else like you.”

Back of the book blurb:

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?

Chase’s thoughts:

Publication Date: September 4, 2018

Publisher: Gallery Books
Pages: 309
ISBN: 9781501165856

Available for Purchase:

My rating:

            Let’s start out very real here: how in the world do Christina Lauren put out three books a year? I haven’t written a single word for anything other than reviews in, like, months. I just… they’re so powerful. No one does contemporary romance quite like this powerhouse duo. Christina Lauren consistently steal my heart and I’m okay with never getting back. It’s always been good hands with those two.

            Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating is currently sitting within the top 3 of my favorite Christina Lauren novels. The other two? Autoboyography and Beautiful Player. Josh and Hazel is hilarious and so completely romantic. It’s one of those books that reader’s will wish they could live in forever.

“He definitely saw me—and don’t get me wrong, I run into guys all the time who’ve seen my vagina and pretend not to know who I am. Things don’t work out and that’s fine. But I paid this guy.”

            Josh and Hazel opens with a hilarious anecdote told by Hazel about her college obsession Josh Im. Fast forward seven years, and what do you know?! Hazel’s current best friend’s brother is the one and the only Josh Im! Hazel’s newest life mission? Make Josh her best friend.

            Who doesn’t love a good friends to lovers romance? There is something so pure about two people who care about each other forming an even deeper connection. Of course, neither Josh nor Hazel could’ve predicted their eventual relationship. Between being best friends and going on double dates with people they’ve chosen for each other, there isn’t much room left to form a blazing hot relationship. So, like Hazel said in The Fault In Our Stars, they fell in love like you fall asleep: slowly and then all at once. (Didn’t realize how fitting that was until I wrote it!)

“The world seems full of men who are initially infatuated by our eccentricities, but who ultimately expect them to be temporary.”

            Hazel is absolutely the shining star in this novel. (Don’t get me wrong… I adore Josh and I will talk more about that later.) Hazel is quirky and the epitome of “eccentric woman” but it never feels as if she’s (or the author’s) trying too hard. And that’s why Hazel is so captivating—she’s authentic, she’s always herself, and she would never apologize for it.

Josh and Hazel does an incredible job of showing how if you’re “different” in any kind of way, you’re written off as childish, or someone to not be taken seriously. And I love how even though Hazel knew this, she continued to be herself. Always. I also loved Hazel’s relationship with her mother and how her mother was a big inspiration for Hazel on how to live her life.

“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.”

            Oh, Josh! My favorite part of Josh and Hazel was how completely different Josh and Hazel were. Josh is the calm to Hazel’s storm. Josh is completely dreamy and I want my own! Josh and Hazel’s dynamic felt effortless and truly, I could’ve read about these two wonderful people forever. I never wanted this book to end.

“You’re second only to a unicorn as far as best friends go, Josh Im.”

            Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating is the perfect novel to end summer with and I promise that you will never want to put this book down.

Happy Reading!


The Wandereader

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