Cover Image: Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating

Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating

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I love love love Christina Lauren and usually devour everything they put out, but this was the first of their books that I didn't feel an instant love/connection to either character. I couldn't feel the spark between characters with this book. I finished it, but it didn't feel very satisfying. Still a great read overall, but Christina Lauren's bar has been set pretty high with their other novels.

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With every new release from Christina Lauren, I find myself falling in love more and more with their words. After reading Love and Other Words and loving it, I wasn’t sure how they’d possibly write something that I loved as much, but they did it. Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating was a breath of fresh air and I didn’t want it to end.

It’s opposite attracts, friends to lovers, it’s everything!! Hazel is one of a kind and beats to her own drum. An elementary school teacher with few quirks, she is unique I LOVED her!!

Josh is Mr. Organized, a planner. not to mention HOT and dreamy!!

Josh and Hazel knew each other from their college days, then they meet again through his sister and quickly became part of each other’s lives. After Josh becomes single again, they decide to find matches for each other and double date. What follows is a hilarious, adventure as they figure out that maybe what they're both looking for was right in front of them all along. It’s filled with sweet and awkward moments. With Hazel being Hazel -the fun never stops. I loved how they became friends, there was always this underlining attraction that they never acted on till one night it all changed. It was slow burn and exciting. I fell in love as they fell. It was just a beautiful thing seeing these two become best friends.

“Drunk giggly Josh is my favorite, but drunk confident Josh is my new religion. My gaze drops lower and I realize I’ve half expected him to bend down and pick up the towel and ask for a blanket again. But in the time since I first peeked and then did a leisurely perusal of his torso, Josh has gotten . . . hard.”

Christina Lauren is a powerhouse duo. They know how to reel you in and keep your eyes glued to the kindle while you experience their phenomenal stories.

Every time I learn of a new release they have planned, I count down the days until release. Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating was pure perfection. I wish I could read it again for the first time!

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Anyone who knew Hazel in college might be horrified to learn she taught eight year old third graders. SHazel believes she is great for this as she is not afraid to make a fool of herself. And there’s something about an eight year olds brain that resonates with Hazel on a spiritual level .Emily is Hazel’s best friend and a fellow teacher though Emily teaches fifth grade and is married to the principal-Dave- of the school she works at-Riverton. It was the last day of school and Hazel wa taking the stuff off the walls in her room when Emily stops in. Emily let Hazel know that there was an opening for a third grade teacher and Hazel had applied and she knew she had an inside edge as the principal was her best friends husband but she was still waiting to hear that she had got the position. Emily and Hazel had met nine months ago in an online political forum, Then they met for coffee several times. The soon became best friends. Emily stopped in to ask in Hazel as coming ot her barbecue that night to make sure Hazel hadn’t forgotten. Hazel is talking with Emily and the other third grade teachers that may soon be her coworkers and they were talking about boobs then Hazel heard a voice and It’s Josh from college who she had always believed was perfect. It turned out Josh was Emily’s brother. Josh has a girlfriend named Tabitha that he calls Tabby who had moved to LA for her job dream at a fashion magazine and they fly back and forth to see each other but Tabby has been unable to make it back to Portland three out of four ties as she has said there has been work emergencies and she had to work late or all weekend. Emily comes out and says she doesn't think he and Tabby have a lot in common and when Josh thinks about it usually they have sex and not don’t do much els together. But Josh made it clear he and Hazel were incapable when his sister said Josh needed more fun in his life and Hazel was fun. Then Hazel asked if she could give Josh her number in case he was down about Tabby not coming home and they could hang out together. The Hazel called asked Josh if he wanted to come over for lunch which he agreed to and she just made pbj as she is a horrible cook. Josh is a physical therapist. While at Hazel’s for lunch Josh gets a dirty text from Tabby and she never talks that way to him and it was about coming over for sex also she would have had to fly and miss work on Monday something she had never done. When Josh texted her if she had been planning to fly out after awhile she texted him back and said she was going to surprise him. Josh and Tabby had been together for two years. Tabby texted Josh and asked him to come to L A that they needed to talk so Josh cleared his schedule for two weeks to fly out and be with Tabby. Hazels’ bathroom pipe burst and flooded her apartment Josh let her go rto his house with her dog Whinny as she had nowhere to go.When Josh got to L A Tabby told him she had been seeing someone else also before she left for L A she had moved out to L A to be closer to the guy and he had helped her get her job. The guy knew about Josh. Tabby wanted to stills see both men but that wasn’t Josh’s way in a relationship. Josh flew back home ad him and hazel started setting up blind dates for each other. Each one was worse than the one before. One night they both were drunk and had sex together.
I loved this book it is one of my new favorites. I laughed out loud while reading this and that is rare when I am reading. I choked up at times also. I loved Josh and Haze together and how they interacted. I loved how they got close after seeing each other again after so long after college and became best friends and went form there. Hazel so deserved a HEA. I loved how Hazel and Josh met in college when she threw up on his shoe. I liked how Tyler came back in her life and acted sweet but in reality was still a butthole and then Josh told him to get bent. I loved Hazels and her moms uniqueness. I love the plot and pace and didn’t want to put this down. This book had me hooked form the first page until the last and I loved the ending. I also loved that Josh was honored to take his aging parents to live with him. I loved the characters and the ins and outs of this book and I highly recommend it.

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This book....THIS BOOK!  By far my favorite read this year.  Only 320 pages..............I could have read 1000 pages of Josh and Hazel.  The writing duo of  Christina Lauren just get better and better with every story they tell.  Josh and Hazel though for me, by far knock all the others out of the way.  Make room you guys, cause Josh and Hazel will steal your heart!

"Sort of" friends from college, they meet again 10 years later and the hilarity and sweetness ensue.  Josh is calm, reserved, introverted, Hazel, is quirky, clumsy, kind, she walks to the beat of her own drum.  Maybe she's a bit zany and "out there" but she does it with a loving spirit.  Hazel is a breath of fresh air in Josh's otherwise mundane life.  And well for Hazel.....Josh is just the most beautiful man she's ever known.  He brings the stability that Hazel needs.  As their friendship blossoms, so do they.  Together, they learn just how much the other brings out of them.  Josh slowly starts to see what life is like through Hazel's eyes and while he's determined not to ruin their friendship, he can't help feel something.

The things that Hazel says when she's nervous are some of the funniest things I've ever read.  I was embarrassed for her a few times, yet found myself laughing out loud all the same.  Poor Josh....

I can never say enough wonderful things about Christina Lauren.  Their stories are ones I can see on the big screen.  Every story feels personal, and every character so very real.  It's an amazing partnership, I'm always waiting to see what's coming next.  If you read nothing else this fall, you have to read Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating.  You won't be disappointed!

* I voluntarily reviewed an Advance Reader’s Copy of this book *

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Josh and Hazel were charming, fun, and I enjoyed their story. This title has a lightness to it, even in the more serious times, that really feel like you are swimming in a bit of champagne as you are reading, bounced around on the bubbles.

I enjoyed this aspect of it. Hazel's flightiness, and her willingness to say just about anything, and do just about anything, that ended up making her the life of the party, but also, at least in her mind, un-dateable for Josh.

Josh, however, has different ideas, and sees her for all of who she is. And, I think that is the appeal of this title, that she is herself and Josh loves her anyway...maybe even always has.

The writing in this was strong. It definitely takes a balance and a precise story arc to have a character as off the wall as Hazel remain appealing and not get tiring. But, that was, I think, part of the charm of the book. You realize that Josh absolutely can love Hazel for who she is, because you do as a reader.

I enjoyed and recommend this title.

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Really loved this book and being able to tell Christina Lauren in person. Podcast link on, and all my social media:

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I received a free copy of this book from the publisher.

This is the first Christine Lauren book I've read. It won't be the last. This book was hilarious. Usually I don't get comedies - I suppose my comedy meter is off or something.

So this book features Hazel and Josh. They knew each other in college but are re-acquainted years later. Hazel is hilarious. She doesn't hold back what she thinks and poor Josh is so reserved. I don't know if he knows how to take her sometimes.

They make a great combination of friends, or non friends, or non dating best friends. HA!'s a bit crazy. Some of their non dates are the worst!

You wait for them to get a clue about their non dating status the whole book. As smart as these two are it takes a few others to screw in their light bulb.

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Lighthearted, exuberant and fun, Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating is the latest romance release by author duo Christina Lauren. As a fan since the start of the Beautiful series, there was no doubt in my mind that I’d want to read this new one. It’s not as steamy as that first series, but just as entertaining.

Hazel Bradford and Josh Im have an interesting history. In college, they constantly ended up in awkward situations from their first meeting at a party (where a drunken Hazel threw up on Josh’s shoes) to that time she was dating his roommate (some sights can’t be unseen) to Hazel’s attempt to write Josh, her TA for an anatomy class, an excuse for not having a paper ready after dental surgery. That note ended up framed on Josh's wall.

Several years later, Hazel crashes into Josh’s orbit once again when it turns out that her new friend Emily has a brother –and it’s Josh. Of course it’s Josh. Perfectly normal Josh. The opposite of loud, unfiltered, joyful Hazel. Due to circumstances, they end up as roommates and since dating each other would be absurd (right?), they double date, finding prospects to introduce to the other party. But the more time they spend together, they deeper their friendship gets, the clearer it becomes that maybe their perfect partner is closer to home than they realize.

What a delightful opposites attract romance! Hazel comes by her eccentricities naturally, with her mother having shown her that being true to oneself is the key to being happy. She knows that she’s quirky and unfiltered and that men find her dateable only for short periods of time, up to the point where they realize she’s not going to change for them and become more socially acceptable. She’s okay with that. In return for true friendship she gives her trust and unfailing loyalty. But she believes that while she and Josh can be friends, really good friends, he’s too good for her and doesn’t contemplate more with him until their relationship undergoes some changes and they have sex. Drunken sex at first, then really good sex, and well, that’s where things get a teensy bit more complicated.

Along with the fun banter, friendship and romantic discovery, there are some great family relationships that feel true to the characters and the story. Hazel and her mother are close, and can talk about everything, including dating and sex. Josh is Korean and there are several scenes with his sister Emily (both of whom have anglicized their names but still use their Korean names when alone and with family) and his parents that show their close knit ties. At the beginning of the story, Josh is in a long distance relationship (short lived) with a woman who never made an effort to get to know his family. Hazel is the complete opposite, having already become fast friends with his sister and endearing herself (in her usual awkward way) to Josh’s mother who takes pleasure in providing food for them both.

Friends to lovers is the relatively easy part, but deciding to go all in and commit to something more takes courage. The latter part of the story has a few surprises on the way to a happy ending, and a truly joyful epilogue that will leave you smiling. I highly recommend this romantic comedy and can’t wait to see what this author duo has up their sleeves next!

Review has been posted on Amazon. As part of a blog tour with Gallery books it will be posted on Goodreads, Instagram, Facebook and Twitter on Sep 7th.

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OMG!!! Yes this book was amazing! It was so engaging! It made me laugh, cry and laugh more. Loved it!

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Hazel is the most eccentric character I have ever experienced. Because of her lack of verbal filter and plethora of pets, most men don't get to know Hazel and the big heart she has. Through a series of disastrous events, Josh Im doesn't have the best impression of Hazel, but Hazel has always had a secret crush on him. The two reconnect when they discover that Hazel's best friend is Josh's sister. When the two move into together because Hazel's apartment gets flooded, she turns Josh's orderly world upside down. The two decide to go on a series of blind double dates to help each other find the one, but eventually recognize the love they have for each other. This is a super, sweet love story where opposites truly attract.

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Blog: The Life & Times of a Book Addict.
Date Posted: September 6, 2018.


Josh comes from a pretty close knit Korean family and has more of a traditional background. He’s pretty even-keeled, a little reserved/serious, but also has a dry sense of humor. He is also a physical therapist and has a business there in Portland. His personality, loyalty, and easy friendship with Hazel had me falling in love with him right alongside Hazel.

Hazel, a third grade school teacher is not what you might expect when you first meet her. She has absolutely no filter and is pretty straight-forward. She usually says the first thing that comes to her mind, but isn’t rude about it. She has the biggest heart, sweet, super easy-going, loves to be happy and make friends. Essentially she is a giant social butterfly. And I loved her to pieces!

This book took me by surprise. I’ve been in a little bit of a book funk lately. Sometimes it’s taken me awhile to get really into a book. So when I started this one, I was not expecting to like it as much as I did. Actually I didn’t just like it, I kind of fell in love with it. Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating was a great story about friendship, love, and not changing who you are to suite others around you. I loved Hazel and Josh. I want to have friends like these two! I’ve always enjoyed reading, but this book…I had so much fun getting to know Hazel and Josh and watching their friendship grow and develop. The other characters like Dave, Emily, Hazel’s mom and Josh and Emily’s mother all added to the story and made it that more special. I lost count of the number of times I laughed. I ended the book with a big smile on my face. I couldn’t wait to tell everyone I knew about it.

In short, go check out Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating!

RATING: 5 out of 5.

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This was hands down the best friends to lovers book I've ever read. Witty and genuine, it felt very real, very natural. Dialogue was so realistic amongst all the characters that Hazel and Emily would have a conversation that I'd have with my bestie, too. The opposites attract trope was nothing stereotypical, and was so well done that you coulda see the exact moment they clicked and just became perfect for each other. My favorite Christina Lauren book. Having just finished it, I already want to read it again.

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Christina Lauren is easily in my top 10 most beloved authors. This author duo knows how to write romance, and write it well. Each new release of theirs brings something unique and fresh to the genre, and Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating is no different. Josh and Hazel stole my heart in their hilarious, adorable friends-to-lovers romance. If you love entertaining books with well-written characters that are utterly relatable, you definitely need this book in your life!

I love quirky heroines, and you don’t get any more quirky than Hazel. She looks at the world a little differently than other people, and Josh understands her in a way few others do and adores her all the more for it. Josh is her perfect match, the steady stability to Hazel’s wild ways. They’ve known each other for a decade since college, but after reuniting, their friendship grows even stronger. You can absolutely feel the strength in the foundation of their friendship, and I love how that friendship slowly grows into an epic love.

As much as I love alpha heroes, it’s the quiet, dependable heroes that always get to me. Josh’s support and adoration for Hazel is one of the best parts about this novel. In addition to that, Christina Lauren did a fantastic job at authentically writing about Josh’s life as a Korean-American. As an Asian-American myself, I couldn’t help but appreciate how seamlessly the authors wove Korean culture, from the language to the food, into the story.

If you’re a fan of rom-coms and friends-to-lovers, I can’t recommend this book enough. Josh and Hazel’s story is fresh, genuine, and romantic. Christina Lauren left me with a smile on my face by the end of the book, but that’s no surprise for me. They’ve been knocking their 2018 releases out of the park, and I already can’t wait for more from them!

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Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating was full of hearts, flowers, and swoon. It was overflowing with everything I love about romance. It personifies romance. I was reminded just why I love this genre so much.

It's not often you can read characters that are truly relatable. Josh and Hazel are just that. Josh is his own special brand of stoic mixed with sweet. His redeeming qualities are too numerous to name. I simply loved him and everything he represented. He had not one single flaw, which is usually so unrealistic, yet it felt completely right.

But Hazel. Oh Hazel. She is what makes this book so outstanding. There is nothing better than a female character who completely embraces who she is. Not just for a bit or only lets herself go when it feels safe to. Hazel isn't afraid to show the world who she is from the start. She embraces her own brand of crazy, and to hell with anyone who doesn't fall in line. You can not truly appreciate the wonder that is Hazel just from reading a book blurb or review. She needs to be experienced. Let me just tell you... The world would be a better place if we were all a little more like Hazel.

For so many reasons, Josh and Hazel's Guide to Dating is one of my top reads from 2018. This book is just full of feels, and you are going to love getting lost inside the pages. Make sure you carve out a few hours before you start, because you won't be able to put it down.

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I chose to read this book in the hopes that it would distract me from a really bad day. Historically, CLo has always been there for me.

There was A LOT of build up about this book online, lots of squeeing and freaking out over it. While I did not squee, Josh and Hazel surely helped to soften the blow of a craptastic few days.

Why? Mainly because Josh and Hazel loved each other for exactly who they were, not who they could or should be but just as they were and always had been. Their friendship and relationship was such a pleasure to read and experience. Josh's acceptance and love of Hazel was so pure and sweet, not to mention sexy as hell. Kudos to Hazel for not settling for a guy who would dim her light.

Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating was a pleasure to read and just what I needed.

*copy provided by publisher

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I’m always excited when I hear about a new novel from Christina Lauren. Every single one is different and surprising. This novel sort of reminded me of a Korean Drama. It was quirky and comical. It’s also written in my favorited point of view, first person.

The authors did a great job of creating wonderful characters. I loved Hazel’s personality, how spunky she was. She is strange and different and she knows it, and doesn’t change for anyone. Josh is amazing. His personality was brought out slowly which I liked. It was like getting to know someone slowly and the more I knew, the more I liked him. He’s caring, protective and accepted Hazel and her strangeness.

I think this novel was a bit slow for me in the beginning but it picked up. Regardless it was still witty and different. It made me laugh, which I love to do in romance novels. I recommend this novel to those who want to read something fun but still romantic.

An advance complimentary copy of this book was supplied by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. All opinions expressed are entirely my own.

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Holy forking shirt, I’ve died and gone to heaven! Not only is Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating one of THE BEST books of the year, it’s by far my new favorite from Christina Lauren (and I’ve read a lot of their books). When I love a book this much, I find it so hard to put my feelings into words–I feel like Hazel would appreciate an interpretive dance or a hand-painted macaroni diorama instead.

Speaking of Hazel, she’s an eccentric, quirky, and adorably lovable heroine. But the best part is, she’s completely unapologetic about it. I love that she didn’t plan to, or even want to, change herself for a man to fall in love with her. She wanted someone who would love her because of who she was and that was that. The authors’ approach to a woman like Hazel is so delightfully refreshing and I want more characters just like her.

Josh is literally the complete opposite of Hazel: he’s grounded, she’s a free spirit; he’s a realist, she’s a dreamer, and so on. For Josh, being friends with someone with such a big personality may have been overwhelming at times, but he just accepts Hazel for who she is and rolls with it. He’s a man of few words, but his self-assured strength and unwavering supportiveness are the things that make such an amazing hero.

Needless to say, I read the entire thing with a grin I couldn’t contain, both from the non-stop humor and the sheer bundle of joy that is this story. The characters are so endearing, the writing so stellar, and the story so dreamy, it grabbed me by the heart and wouldn’t let go. I could probably ramble on for about ten more paragraphs, so I’m going to stop myself and just tell you, READ THIS BOOK!

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The college years are a time of transition—a time to grow up, to learn to be responsible, and to figure out who we really are. But in Christina Lauren’s Josh and Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating, when two very different college classmates bump into each other years later, they find that the only thing that’s changed is their compatibility...

Review published on and aired on Shelf Discovery.

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Cute story. This was not my favorite by this duo but it was a fun read. I adored Hazel’s personality. The sweet and slow burn of Josh and Hazel falling in love was just right.

If you are a fan of quirky heroines, you will love this book. I could actually visualize this as a movie, which says a lot about the story. Well done.

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I really enjoyed this book! Hazel was amazing and seriously someone I would love to be best friends with. Josh was so nice and just such a good guy... he was the only guy Hazel ever encountered who accepted her for exactly who she is. This book is the story of two people who think they're wrong for each other, but wind up being a perfect match.. This was my first book by Christina Lauren, but it wont be my last. It was a great story!

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