Title: Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating
Written by Christina Lauren
Read by Todd Haberkorn, Jayme Mattler
Published by Simon & Schuster Audio
Publication Date: September 4, 2018
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Length: 7 hrs and 16 mins
Format: Audiobook, Trade Paperback
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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?
Probably one of the most hyped and recommended books is Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating and I was hesitant to start it. This is one of the cases where I was wrong! The HYPE is real! Josh and Hazel is charming and sweet and everything everyone said and more!
But let’s be honest. I seriously had a hard time getting into Josh and Hazel. I mean, she was a pretty unusual character. In fact, it took me a while to realize that Hazel is actually a “manic pixie dream girl.” She is indeed an unusual character and probably one that took a while for me to like. I ended up feeling for her as the story went on, though. But you must admit, she was very endearing!
There were also a few cringe-worthy moments that had me laugh out loud. This helped me come into terms with her personality. She really is quirky but, in the end, she endeared herself to me which made me like her!
Josh was a character that I could relate to. He is the stuffy stereotypical Asian guy (and I know a few) who was perfect for Hazel’s weird and quirky character.
In fact, I liked that their relationship developed really slowly and started as a friendship. Now that I think about it, Josh and Hazel do follow the typical “manic pixie dream girl” trope to a T. But despite that, I absolutely enjoyed it.
It probably helped that I listened to the audiobook version. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have finished it. I do have thoughts on the audiobook narrators. I absolutely LOATHED the narrator reading Josh’s POV. Todd Haberkorn is a horrible male narrator! I mean, he uses the typical “high pitched” annoying female voice that I absolutely LOATHED! I mean, can’t male narrators just use their normal voice like how others do?!
The female narrator Jayme Mattler, is really a good narrator. And if this wasn’t read by two narrators, I would have DNF’d this book and sadly, not appreciate the quirkiness that is Hazel.
I would also want to note that after listening to the audiobook, I seriously HAD to have Korean food! In fact, I drove to Koreatown in Los Angeles to have some K food! It was absolutely delish!
Unfortunately, this book follows the new Christina Lauren trend of being a little woman’s fiction and does not have the steaminess of the previous Beautiful Bastard books. I seriously miss this, by the way.
I recommend Josh and Hazel but unfortunately, I can’t recommend the audiobook version. If you’re like me who cringe at awful narrators, you will avoid the audiobook like the plague. I’m even surprised that I was able to finish the whole audio!
Do you prefer books with a high steamy factor?
Does the steam factor increase your enjoyment of the book?