Review copy was received from Publisher. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.
Josh & Hazel's Guide to Not Dating by Christina Lauren
Narrator: Jayme Mattler, Todd Haberkorn
Published by Simon & Schuster Audio on September 4, 2018
Genres: Contemporary Romance
Length: 7 hours, 16 minutes
Amazon, Audible, Audiobook, Barnes & Noble
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?
Robin did a review of Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating earlier this fall on the digital book version. Her review made it sound so amazing; I couldn’t pass up the audio. I’m a real fan of Christina Lauren. They do an excellent job at capturing people in their funny, unique ways with authentic emotions and issues. The people and their relationships are so plausible, so real. Josh and Hazel met in college but weren’t involved. We are now years later and they meet again.
I agree with Robin’s review completely. Hazel is an awesome, bursting with life character. Who wouldn’t want to be friends with her in real life? She may have a filter issue, at times saying the most true and cringe-worthy or hilarious thing, but she’s so real. I hate the way people have tried and sometimes succeeded in making her feel insecure or undateable.
Josh is the perfect sort of regular, upper middle class guy. There are a few interesting twists in his Korean heritage. He has just ended a relationship where he found out his girlfriend was cheating on him. So Hazel steps in to be his best friend. They start setting up each other on blind dates and go as double dates.
Yeah, this is going to go well. NOT. ROFL. But as Robin points out, nothing goes wrong for us readers because it is crazy, wonderful fun. We do get both Josh and Hazel’s point of view in alternating chapters which is the best since you know where each person is emotionally. I have to really feel for them when they are wrong about how the other person feels. Communication is so difficult and so important. Timing is an important issue in communication, also.
So with the realistic feels, this is an amazing, outlandish, amusing, brilliant adventure.
This was such a fun and fast listen at my usual 1.25x speed. I enjoyed the story and the dual narration was great. Jayme Mattler did a superb job on Hazel chapters. Todd Haberkorn was perfect as Josh, but I confess I really dislike his voice for Hazel. Fortunately, it wasn’t part of the story too often. The performance overall was a joy with the hilarious dialogue and quirky characters.
Listen to a clip:
Reading this book contributed to these challenges:
- 2018 Audiobook Challenge
- 2018 New Release Challenge