Loathe to Love You by Ali Hazelwood is a collection of three STEM-romance stories. In the first story, “Under One Roof,” an environmental engineer, Mara, has inherited a home. The only catch? Mara has also inherited the roommate of her nightmares — a big-oil lawyer. Can diametrically opposed foes even cohabitate? In the second story, “Stuck with You,” civil engineer Sadie gets trapped in an elevator with her nemesis. Can forced proximity bring these two to a civil understanding? And finally, in the third story, “Below Zero,” when a NASA aerospace engineer, Hannah, is left stranded conducting research at a remote Arctic station, OUTSIDE IN A BLIZZARD, the only person able (or willing) to save her is a longtime rival.
What I Loved
Ali Hazelwood’s storytelling ability is one of the best in the romance genre, and for this reason, her stories are addictive to read. While I don’t always agree with the content in her books (I’ve written previously about toxic traits to steer clear of in the romance genres), I can’t deny that Hazelwood has a gift with words.
The women in Hazelwood’s stories are independent and beyond brilliant. I’m not always a fan of the enemies-to-lovers trope, but Hazelwood is starting to convince me that maybe this trope isn’t as bad as I once thought. The problems between the characters in these short stories were believable, and once they had been resolved, there was no reason I could think of as to why the main characters should remain enemies. And the make-up scenes? Yeah. Very spicy. They alone make this book worth the read.
I also appreciated getting small glimpses into the world of women in STEM. Engineering and science-y things have never been my forte, so I enjoy reading about people, especially women, who excel in those fields.
What I Loathed
All bodies are amazing and beautiful and should be included in storytelling. However, when each character is portrayed as a Greek god who came down to earth to grace us with their presence, it gets to be a little much. I don’t need to be continuously reminded that the male characters are massive and have huge hands that can wrap around their partner’s torso (is that even physically possible?). I also don’t need to be reminded that the female character is just so small and dainty that the male character could flick them away with one finger and they would break. And I don’t need to be reminded about these size discrepancies on every other page (that’s what it felt like). This part of the character-building began to get on my nerves and distracted me from the main focus of the story: the intellectual and emotional connection between the main characters, the banter, and the steam.
If you’re on the hunt for some steamy romances with brilliant women as the leads, Loathe to Love You is the book for you.