Book Review: Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game

Who doesn’t love a good enemies-to-lovers story? From the witty banter to the spicy tension and all the sweet moments in between, Sally Thorne’s The Hating Game was the perfect winter break romance.


I picked this up during winter break after I read a particularly glowing Goodreads review about it. I spend an unhealthy amount of time on Goodreads, reading hilariously savage reviews that make me want to change my mind about a book, but The Hating Game was at an impressive 4.13 stars.


I gave it a solid 4.5.


The Hating Game is about Lucy Hutton and Joshua Templeman. They hate each other. Forced to work together after a company merger, they spend their days sitting across from each other and competing in petulant games. Lucy is charming and sweet and prides herself in being everybody’s favorite coworker, while Josh is grumpy, strict, and harsh with deadlines. They’re hate-filled standstill is ruined, however, when a new promotion becomes available to them with only one person good enough for the job. Lucy absolutely cannot let Josh win. The thought of him being her boss is humiliating enough to make her want to resign. So, she vows to win, and the two are whisked into a hilarious rollercoaster of suddenly facing the loss of more than just a promotion.


Enemies-to-lovers and office-romance? Sign me up!


The beginning of the book was absolute comedic gold! Those weren’t just quick exhales coming from my nose—I was full-out barking with laughter. Lucy’s internal monologue was hilarious and relatable. Reading her explanation of the events had me convinced that her reason for hating Joshua Templeman was valid. Her character totally drew me in.


The story even had a surprisingly deep theme to it as well. Through Joshua, we get a refreshing look into a male protagonist being sensitive and vulnerable. Like, aren’t you tired of all your heroes being huge hunks of confidence with endless supplies of smirks?


The only place where I thought this story lacked a little was during the second half of the book, when it fell into a heap of depression. The story lost all of its tension and Hating-Game spice as Joshua’s secret was revealed. Even though I admit that his backstory required a bit of sadness, I missed the joy and fun from the beginning. It was like they fell in love and the sparks fizzled out.


Still, all in all, The Hating Game was a solid read. It’s a quick, fun read to get your mind off of things and laugh along.