TITLE: Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating
BY: Christina Lauren
GENRE: Romance, Contemporary
PUBLICATION: September 4th 2018 by Gallery Books
I found this on my aunt’s Kindle and I’m so happy. I think she downloaded it only for me coz I’m still babysitting for her and I can’t go home yet, where my books are. They have collections of books too but limited. They don’t have contemporary books, especially not those that have almost-naked men and women on the cover. Thank God she has a Kindle. (I haven’t bought one yet since I lost mine.)
Josh and Hazel have a history, one that involves throwing up and an email filled with misspelled words and wrong grammar. There was one incident that involves naked butt too. But no matter how odd their history is, it was a nice enough that when they met again years later, it wasn’t surprising they get together. Not that Josh has a choice, once Hazel’s tentacles caught him, he got no chance. But Josh was happy to have her, and even agreed when Hazel proposed they go to series of double dates. Since they can’t date each other. They already set that straight from the start. Their relationship was pure platonic until the series of dates turned into series of disasters…
This must be one of the cutest and most adorable love stories I’ve ever read. Josh and Hazel are just so perfect for each other and I love how their story went. This is the kind of a love story I want for myself. No kidding. The kind where man and woman met, became friends, and then became more than that. Not one of them is even attracted or in love with the other from the beginning, their LOVE really started from nothing but friendship to something big. The authors really did a good job to show the development of Hazel and Josh’s relationship.
Some tropes are in this book too, like the obvious – friends-to-lovers, the roommate trope and some others that I can not give because they’re almost spoilers. But I assure you, you’ll enjoy these tropes. 🙂 And though I can say this is a light and sweet romance, some heavy topics were touched too but the flow, the tone of the book remains light. And if there’s a greatest lesson this book can give, it’s through Hazel.
“I tend to be too chatty, too silly, too exuberant, too random, too eager.”
Self worth and accepting one’s self. Typing those words warm my heart. I know most of us, if not all, struggles at some point of accepting ourselves and wanting to belong. But not Hazel, she learned early that she doesn’t have to belong because she’s one fine soul and just need people who can see that too. And I wish, even pray, that we’re all have at least a fraction of Hazel’s personality. Because the world might become more colorful as this novel is. The world’s standards of normal is overrated, anyway. Right?
“But at the end of the day”….”being myself is enough. I’m enough.”
Hazel is obviously an amazing person/character, now add Josh. He’s not a manwhore and so nice. And he’s Korean. He’s Korean name is even Jimin (For BTS Armies, I think.) and I love the addition of Josh’s family, and their tradition in the story. I just so love Josh, I don’t know what to say more aside from the obvious that Hazel is so freaking lucky to have him.
…I’m a satellite that’s found its safe-space beacon.
Mind you, Haze said that when there’s no hint of romance yet. How amazing it is if we all have Josh in our lives, someone who doesn’t have to be our romantic partner and yet we find them as our beacon.
If I have anything against this book, the ending felt abrupt. The epilogue just appeared. Now that can be a positive or negative thing. Positive coz it means I want more, I don’t want to see an epilogue yet. But I went few pages back and saw that all the elements a book should have before it’s ending are already there so it really is time for an ending. Negative ‘coz I spent more time watching them fall in love than really in love. It felt rushed but really, it’s okay. 🙂
Overall, this is a cute, funny, fascinating love story with a great message. In my opinion, I’m not exaggerating if I said this book is the definition of love. I don’t need a very-serious book to understand love and even self-worth.