WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker's Reviews > Hate to Want You

Hate to Want You by Alisha Rai
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it was amazing
bookshelves: contemporary, series, favorites

I received this book for free in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Growing up as the pseduo prince and princess of their families, it was almost inevitable that Nicholas and Livvy would end up together. However, their world gets shattered when tragedy strikes and they find themselves ripped apart.
Ten years later and Livvy is back home to take care of her mother and maybe get back some of what was lost to her.
Nicholas wants something too, more than one night a year.
First in the new Forbidden Hearts series, Hate to Want You lends itself to the easy comparison to Romeo and Juliet. We have two families brought together by hard work and determinism, only to be broken apart two generations later by hurt, innuendo, secrets, and pain. Our couple's grandfathers started a grocery store that has been built up over the years to develop into a chain. When the heroine's father and the hero's mother are killed in a car accident together, painful questions are raised. Then the hero's father does some suspiciously underhanded dealings to buy heroine's family half of the grocery chain. Thus, begins the cold war between the families and the fracturing of Livvy and Nicholas' romance.
In terms of pure pleasure and relief, he imagined the feeling he got when he received a text from Livvy was similar to what an addict felt when they got a hit of whatever drug they craved.
We are started off with Nicholas' point of view and what a deep emotional start it was. We learn that on Livvy's birthday she texts him her coordinates, he travels to her, and they have sex for that one night a year. Except she didn't do it this year and he finds out she is in town where she hasn't stepped foot in ten years. Our first look at the couple is so filled with emotion and sexual tension, you'll be hooked. Nicholas starts off as the brighter focus of the two with his barely contained torment, weight of struggling to take care of the business and his family, and inability to stop craving Livvy. There is a tiny little bit of martyr syndrome to him, but ultimately, his character and heart was wonderful to read.
All those years ago, she'd lost her father to death, her mother to grief, her brothers to hate. And then she'd lost him.
While I thought Nicholas started off with a stronger spotlight, Livvy grows brighter and brighter with each new insight to her character. Livvy was such an amazing look at strengths and weaknesses that were laid bare with inner struggles that were a painful beauty to behold. Her struggle to try and manage her feelings to what she thinks is acceptable and still respect her herself had so much depth. We also learn of a very real struggle she deals with, I loved how the author didn't use to define her but showed how she is in some ways fashioned from it. Our heroines don't always get to be everything; Livvy was a fantastic multi-faceted woman.
There is no way I can do justice in relaying to you the complete picture of story and characters Alisha Rai gives us. The family dynamics going on here were tremendously done, with the emotions feeling real and raw. There's obviously more to be discovered about the instances that tore these two families apart, the introduction to the secondary characters that are connected by these story threads will have you dying to get the complete picture. Nicholas and Livvy's siblings aren't thrown out there as series bait but rather fill out the complete story; I'm salivating for their stories (Put me on team pairing up Eve and Gabe!).
Now, this has more intense sexual talk and scenes than your average contemporary, you could probably put an erotica tag on it. They are gritty, raw, and of course sexual with the author not shying away from pearl clutching language. I would argue though, that what makes them feel so raw are the deep emotion between Livvy and Nicholas, but look, the spanking and hair pulling also helps. What I personally loved about their sex scenes were the powerful dynamics happening. There's a blowjob scene where Nicholas is the more vulnerable participant, even while physically we know he's the more powerful, he's shown to be incredibly emotionally vulnerable. There's been a little bit of a trend to portray "Me Tarzan, you Jane" sex, the power and emotion dynamics sex scenes here blow those depictions out of the water for me. I was a huge fan of what felt more like consensual and emotionally balanced sex. What I'm trying to say, is spanking and hair pulling sex scenes can be amazing when you add depth of emotion. The hint of humor and lightness between our couple, which gets bogged down sometimes from the pain and circumstances, also plays a big part here, even if regulated to the edges.
Deep, emotional, raw, and hot, Hate to Want You is an incredible lovers-to-enemies-to-lovers romance. Nicholas and Livvy's desire and love for one another is the stuff of Shakespearean plays. Alisha Rai has set up a series with a world and characters that I can't wait to return to and read about.
"You're not my secret anymore. My love for you is bigger than anyone who might try to tear us apart." He paused. "I won't leave you, Livvy. You don't have to trust me completely right now, but watch me. Watch me fight for you this time."
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Reading Progress

May 11, 2017 – Shelved
May 11, 2017 – Shelved as: to-read
July 10, 2017 – Started Reading
July 12, 2017 –
20.0% "Their encounters were usually a haze of sweet and pleasure and filthy words and filthier actions.

You're only 20% in, you're only 20% in. My mantra to try and put a lid on the excitement threatening to bubble over. We've got sexiness but most importantly, the deep barely contained emotion, y'all. Y'ALL! I'm shook. No one warned me how good this started off."
July 14, 2017 –
70.0% "“Unbutton that shirt a little more.”
She regularly wore corsets and miniskirts, but she clutched the lapels of her shirt together like an outraged aunt and glared down at him. “I will not.”
“Come on. If I’m such a creeper, give me something to creep on.”
She was tempted to smile, but she controlled her face. “Creepers don’t get rewarded.”
“Probably a good policy.”
July 14, 2017 – Shelved as: contemporary
July 14, 2017 – Shelved as: series
July 14, 2017 – Shelved as: favorites
July 14, 2017 – Finished Reading

Comments Showing 1-23 of 23 (23 new)

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Bubu Nope, couldn't resist. And nope, pretty much spoiler free. You simply whet my already immense appetite for this book. Thank you very much! And I still hate you because I have to wait another 10 days! Sounds like the perfect balance of angstiness and emotional gratification.

Great review and thanks for not spoilering it. I would have read the spoilers. I'm weak that way ;)

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker I can't wait for you to read this! I'm excited to see what you think :)
Hahaha, I'm the same way, I try to lie to myself and say if I just quickly/skim a review its not really spoiling.

Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth Holy shit. 5 stars from you? :O

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker Right?! My first fully 5 stars of the year :) It's so good, you need to read it!

Astrid - The Bookish Sweet Tooth Added it already to my tbr!

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker YES! Looking forward to your review!

message 7: by Bubu (last edited Jul 15, 2017 06:55PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bubu Kyraryker/WhiskeyintheJar wrote: "I can't wait for you to read this! I'm excited to see what you think :)
Hahaha, I'm the same way, I try to lie to myself and say if I just quickly/skim a review its not really spoiling."

You know this feeling when you read the blurb and, although you never read anything by the author but heard about her/him, that it'll be good? You just feel it in your guts? That's what I had with this one and I was so, so jealous when I saw it pop up on your 'currently reading' status ;)

When I saw your rating last night, even before reading your review, I did a fist pump lol :) I iz crazy!

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker The gorgeous cover drew me in first but I'm with you on the blurb, it just sounded like my jam.
I've excited squealed, made a non-human sound in public when I've read a positive review for a book I was already excited for. We iz crazy!
I'm so happy I've found my people on GRs :)

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker Ooh, I remember the tie!
Tip of the iceberg, tip of the iceberg ;)

message 11: by Vashti (new) - added it

Vashti I was hesitant to read this book as I never read this author before and didn't know what to expect,but your wonderful review sealed the deal so I added it.

message 12: by Bubu (new) - rated it 5 stars

Bubu I've just read your review for a second time. I'm smiling, Kyra :)

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker @ Vashti - It was my first book by the author too! I was blown away. I really hope you enjoy it as much as I did :)

@ Bubu - Only fair because your review almost had me tearing up thinking about Livvy

message 14: by MJ (new) - rated it 4 stars

MJ Your review has sold me. Can't wait to start this one.

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker Yay! Hope you enjoy it as much as I did :)

message 16: by Shari Kay (new) - added it

Shari Kay Any chance at all they are celibate when apart?

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker Nothing shown on page. It's a bit faint in my mind but I think it's mentioned the heroine had been maybe active other than hero. Brief talk, which is why I probably can't remember too well

message 18: by Shari Kay (new) - added it

Shari Kay Thanks for the info!

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker No problem! Hope you like it if you decide to read :)

message 20: by Ursula (new) - added it

Ursula And... damn. Will have to read it.

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker If you have to quit your job and abandon your family to read this, right decision.

Tiffany Loved this review and all your opinions! It was such a good book and I can't wait to read the next couple in the series.

WhiskeyintheJar/Kyraryker It was my first book by this author and I was so blown away. I haven't read the second yet but have an arc of the third, thinking I'm going to have to dedicate a weekend to soaking these in.

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