Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating: A Comical Yet Heartfelt Exploration of Friendship and Romance
When it comes to dating, some people just seem to have all the luck, while others struggle to find that special someone. But what if you're not looking for love in the traditional sense? What if you just want to have fun and enjoy the company of someone who understands you? That's the premise of Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating, a delightful rom-com by Christina Lauren.
The Plot: Friends Without Benefits
Josh and Hazel first meet in college, when they end up sitting next to each other in a class they both hate. Hazel is quirky, outspoken, and prone to embarrassing mishaps, while Josh is quiet, reserved, and studious. Despite their differences, they strike up an unlikely friendship over shared pizza and beer.
Years later, after both have had their fair share of failed relationships, they reconnect at a party and decide to set each other up on blind dates. But as they navigate the treacherous waters of modern dating, they begin to realize that maybe what they've been looking for has been right in front of them all along.
The Characters: Quirky and Loveable
What makes this book so enjoyable is the characters. Hazel is a force of nature she wears colorful wigs, plays the drums in a band, and says whatever pops into her head. She's the kind of person who would rather be herself and risk looking foolish than try to fit into someone else's mold. Josh, on the other hand, is more reserved and cautious. He's been hurt in the past and is hesitant to open himself up again. But he can't help being drawn to Hazel's infectious energy and genuine kindness.
Together, they make an odd couple but it works. They bring out the best in each other and have a deep understanding of what makes the other tick. As they navigate the ups and downs of dating other people, they begin to realize that what they really want is each other but can they overcome their fears and take the leap?
The Writing: Witty and Fun
Christina Lauren (the pen name for co-authors Christina Hobbs and Lauren Billings) has a knack for writing witty dialogue and relatable characters. The banter between Josh and Hazel is laugh-out-loud funny at times, but there are also moments of genuine emotion that tug at your heartstrings. The pacing is spot-on, with just the right amount of tension and release to keep you engaged from beginning to end.
The Themes: Friendship, Love, and Self-Acceptance
At its core, Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating is a story about friendship about finding someone who accepts you for who you are, flaws and all. It's also about love not just romantic love, but the love between friends who care deeply about each other. And it's about self-acceptance about learning to be comfortable in your own skin and not trying to be someone you're not.
The Verdict: A Must-Read for Rom-Com Fans
If you're a fan of romantic comedies or just looking for a fun, heartwarming read, Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating is definitely worth checking out. The characters are quirky and loveable, the writing is witty and fun, and the themes are universal. Whether you're single or in a relationship, this book will leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling and maybe even inspire you to look at your own friendships in a new light.
So grab a copy of Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating, curl up with a cup of tea (or something stronger), and enjoy this delightful romp through the ups and downs of modern dating.