Review: How to Date a Douchebag: The Studying Hours by Sara Ney

Reviewed by Joanna

Jameson wears cardigan and pearls, particularly when she goes to the campus library. This way, she won’t get hit on by douchebags. Also, she likes cardigans. Who doesn’t?

The crew of douchebags in the corner, that’s who. One, Oz, gets bet $500 by his wrestling team cronies that he can’t get the virginal-looking girl to kiss him.

Well the jokes on him, as not only does Jameson take him up on the offer, after extracting a full explanation of why he’s haunting her table and a promise of a 50% cut, she seduces him right there in the library. Her kiss knocks his Iowa-themed socks off, but when she’s done, our girl wants nothing more to do with the guy.

He’s a douchebag. Sleazy, slutty and an out and out heartbreaker. No matter how good looking Sebastian ‘Oz’ Osborne is, and no matter how much he flirts with James afterwards, she’s not having any of him. Naturally this captivates the famous college sportsman. This not-really-all-that-hot girl isn’t falling at his feet. Why, therefore she must be a challenge!

Without questioning his motivations Oz sets out to win over the girl. For sex. Nothing else. He doesn’t expect to genuinely like her wit, or how clever she is. And it’s funny how much prettier she becomes the longer he spends in her company.

But douches gonna douche and Oz gets in his own way. James wants a boyfriend who’ll respect her. Though Oz is charming, with his muscles, tattoos and messy blond hair (not to mention a VERY revealing wrestling outfit), he says he’s not willing to settle down. And there’s the conflict. She’s the immovable object, he’s the irresistible force, and yet they come together pretty gently.

There so much to like about this story. James and Oz are well written, and the story centers so closely on them and their interactions, very little is spared for non-relationship building. I noticed the lack of meaningful character background, relationships with side characters, and of all that much scenery, but it was okay as the fun our couple had together, their text messages, and their dislike for being apart carried the story along.

With Oz being a wrestler, I expected some practice or match scenes from his POV, but his sport wasn’t heavily focused on and I didn’t mind. James had even less to her own world. I’m not sure I can even recall what subject she was studying. She had a calculator out a few times so maybe finance? Ah I looked it up. I’m wrong, but it doesn’t really matter as it’s irrelevant to the tale.

Their friends had a heavier focus. Zeke, Oz’s best mate and the guy who places the inciting bet, is an even bigger douche, and he acts as a mini antagonist. He’s got book two and I’m interested to see what makes this guy tick. I’m guessing he goes after one of James’s friends as there were 4 girls & 4 guys listed so series fodder aplenty.

One minus point is how the ending sort of petered out. There was no big drama to excite the pulse. At 90% through I was thinking ‘huh, there must be some drama coming soon between them’, but it didn’t show. Except for…

Oz had some strange dream sequences which utterly threw me when I read them. I thought the ebook page numbering had messed up, that’s how little sense it made at first. As a tactic for replacing plot, I felt a little hard done by. I think the last one – commitment related – was meant to be his big drama but I didn’t feel it was that big an issue for him, and it didn’t link much to the motivation he had at the beginning of the book.

Overall this was well written and I’m going to pick up the second book. The chapters had cute little #douchebag quotes at the beginning of each and I’ll leave you with a couple:

“If your left leg was lunch and your right leg was dinner, I’d want to snack between meals.”

“Nothing says regret like the dick of someone you don’t know, yet slept with, poking you in the ass crack the next morning.”

Rating: B+

Click to purchase: Amazon

How to Date a Douchebag: The Studying Hours
by Sara Ney
Release Date: September 13, 2016

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