Despite the odds against them from an embarrassing meet-awkward at a mutual friend’s Halloween party, Carter and Evie immediately hit it off. Even the realization that they’re both high-powered agents at competing firms in Hollywood isn’t enough to squash the fire.
But when their two agencies merge—causing the pair to vie for the same position—all bets are off. What could have been a beautiful, blossoming romance turns into an all-out war of sabotage. Carter and Evie are both thirtysomething professionals—so why can’t they act like it?
Can Carter stop trying to please everyone and see how their mutual boss is really playing the game? Can Evie put aside her competitive nature long enough to figure out what she really wants in life? Can their actor clients just be something close to human? Whether these two Hollywood love/hatebirds get the storybook Hollywood ending or just a dramedy of epic proportions, you will get to enjoy Christina Lauren’s heartfelt, raucous, and hilarious romance style at its finest.
This is a romance novel! I read a romance novel. What a concept! And once I move past being super proud of myself for reading outside my comfort zone, the book itself was… fine. It wasn’t terrible. I found the setting interesting and the characters were perfectly good characters. There wasn’t anything bad about this book. There just wasn’t anything that blew me away. It was just all pretty fine.
Carter and Evie were fine. Their chemistry wasn’t off the charts, but it wasn’t nonexistant. I liked how competitive they got. That was fun. The side characters weren’t super developed, but maybe that’s just how it is in romance? The one other non-YA romance novel I’ve read also wasn’t the strongest in the secondary character department. My main complaint is that Carter’s brother shares a fairly distinctive name with a very talkative guy in my history class but their personalities are polar opposites and yet my brain kept going they is same person? and confusing me. (Which is not the authors’ fault. We cannot simply outlaw names because they’re taken by guys in my history class.)
It was a pretty fast read! I was never dragging me heels and wishing I was doing something else because I was bored (which happens, trust me). I just didn’t spend my spare time really wanting to get back to it.
My favourite part was the setting. I loved the agent aspect and the corporate politics, especially between Evie and her boss. I also just found the world of Hollywood Drama really interesting, and liked how sexism in Hollywood was addressed. I kind of wish that the issues with Evie and her boss had been the central conflict? Like a mystery thing? Why does he hate her? Instead of the romance.
And I really think that’s my central problem. I’m not a romance person. I just don’t usually find plain romance enough to really get me hooked on a story. I love a good romantic subplot, but if the romance is front and centre, it really needs to blow me away or I’ll just be sitting there thinking that this is fun banter, but it would be better if something was about to blow up.
So is Dating You/Hating You a good romance book. I don’t know? Maybe? Maybe if romance is your thing you’ll like this? But for me, I keep on coming back to that word. Just… fine.