He said, his voice eerily soft, ‘When I see you’re hurting, I want to wipe it away. When I see you doubting yourself, I want to give you the best damned pep talk in history. When you cry, I want to make you smile. When you laugh, I want to make you laugh harder. When you moan in my arms, I want to make you dissolve into a puddle. When you’re insecure about how I feel about you, I want to replace that with a proclamation that I love you so hard that I never want you to question us again.’
Rule #1: No hot guys.
It might sound ridiculous. I get it. It kind of is, but college was supposed to be my sanctuary. It was my place to start over. The rumors, the whispers, and the jealousy I endured through high school would all be gone.
No one would know me at college.
Rule #2: No drama.
I’d major in pre-law. I’d make a few loyal friends. Everything would be easy breezy. No one was going to use me or hurt me. I wouldn’t let them.
Rule #3: New year. New place. New me.
And all because of Shay Coleman.
Football captain and quarterback, he was the big guy on campus. The cocky guy in my political science class with a smirk. I hated him on sight . . .
. . . and he was about to break all my rules.
Everyone has that author that is very near and dear to their heart because they wrote an amazing series or book that you will forever remember. Tijan is one of those authors for me. I buy and read every single book of hers because she is so talented and writes some incredible books. So I was not surprised when I absolutely LOVED Hate to Love You!
The story. Hate to Love You follows Kennedy’s first year at college. This book was very well written and had a good pace to it. It was angsty, hot, mysterious, dramatic, and everything that I love in Tijan’s books. Tijan’s books usually have a darker vibe to them that includes unconventional family situations, heartbreaking pasts, or difficult topics. Another thing that Tijan’s books always have…DRAMA. Sometimes it can be a tad over the top, but I thoroughly enjoy it.
Kennedy Clarke. Kennedy is a force to be reckoned with and I was feeling all sorts of “you go girl” moments. Kennedy is fierce, challenging, loyal, and does not back down from a fight…no matter who is on the opposing side of her ire. Kennedy goes to college with a specific plan to fly under the radar and work her ass off in school, but her plan was completely screwed from the first day she sat in her political science class. Kennedy faced a lot of challenges in high school due to her charming brothers whom everyone wanted a piece of. This is why she has her strict rules in place and hates Shay Coleman on sight. Another, bigger reason she keeps him away is because she had been devastated by a boy before. Despite her greatest efforts to avoid him, Shay is his own force to be reckoned with and won’t be dissuaded. Kennedy deals with some major issues and heartbreaking scenarios during her first year of college, and she comes out on the other side with Shay’s unwavering support.
Shay Coleman. This man. I LOVE this man so freaking much. He is alpha yet sweet, laid back yet protective, and commands attention wherever he goes, which is why he is the beloved captain of the football team/big man on campus. I related a lot to Shay because he just goes about his business and doesn’t pay attention to the drama going on around him. However, this got him into trouble a few times. Shay has a hard time opening up to others, even his best friends, because he is such a private person. This is a challenge he eventually overcomes, but it is a difficult one.
The relationship. The relationship was lust at first sight and Shay Coleman was every woman’s wet dream. I loved their relationship because it started out unconventional and was so intense. Kennedy fought it every step of the way though which made for some angsty scenes. The steam was off the charts for these two and I was just rooting so hard for them. They were so loyal to each other and would go down swinging. The banter between these two was perfect and I really just loved everything about them.
Side Characters. Tijan can write some awesome side characters. The side characters are often just as fun as the main characters. Linde, Kristina, Casey, and the rest of the crew were great additions to the story. Casey’s side plot in this story was super sad, but I loved how it brought her and Kennedy together. Kristina and Linde were solid friends to both Kennedy and Shay. I want more of this crew! Maybe Tijan will write their stories in the future.
I would highly recommend this book to those who enjoy: drama, college romance, fierce heroines, and sweet, protective football heroes.
Overall Rating: ★★★★★/★★★★★