eARC Review – I Hate You More by Lucy Gilmore

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Title: I Hate You More

Author: Lucy Gilmore

Publisher: Sourcebooks Casablanca

Publication date: November 2nd, 2021

272 pages

3.5/5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis

Discover what makes Lucy Gilmore an instant fan favorite with this unforgettably funny enemies-to-lovers romcom starring:
• a grumpy dog show judge
• a determined former beauty queen
• and a Golden Retriever more interested in stealing bacon than winning Best in Show.

Ruby Taylor gave up pageant life the day she turned eighteen and figured she’d never look back. But when an old friend begs her to show her beloved Golden Retriever at the upcoming Canine Classic, Ruby reluctantly straps on her heels and gets to work.

If only she knew exactly what the adorably lazy lump of a dog was getting her into.

If there’s one thing veterinarian Spencer Wilson knows in this world, it’s dogs. Human beings are an entirely different animal. Especially stubborn, gorgeous women clearly in way over their heads. As judge for the local dog show, Spencer advises Ruby to quit while she still can, but her old fervor for winning has returned―and she wants to show the stern, broody-eyed judge that she’s more than just a pretty face. In the end, she’ll show him who’s best in show.

Review

It’s pretty much a given that I will request a book with an illustrated cover on it, but one that ALSO has a dog on the cover?? Sold. Immediately.

Ruby is our MC, an ex-pageant girl turned CNA in a retirement home. She is conned by one of the tenants to enter her recalcitrant pup into the area dog show, where she meets the grumpy judge Spencer and his charming twin brother Caleb. Spencer wants nothing to do with Wheezy, the mixed breed golden retriever who is incredibly untrained and basically does the opposite of whatever Ruby instructs. But Spencer is drawn to Ruby’s beauty and personality, so drama ensues.

The spice in this book?? Holy hell. Reminded me a lot of Andie J. Christopher’s writing, and especially her newest. There are several open door scenes so beware of that before reading if that isn’t your vibe. Also, there are some prime romantic moments as well, it’s not just the spice that makes this romance attractive.

However, I found the overall story and plot line to be lacking in depth. I enjoyed the characters, I had a fun time, but this is a shorter than average romance – so if it were longer I feel more could have been down to provide the depth it is lacking. It’s also a tad ridiculous with some of the events, especially around the dog.

Worth the read but not a story likely to stick. I may have bookmarked those spicy pages for future reading though ;).

Thank you to Sourcebooks Casablanca and Netgalley for an early copy in exchange for an honest review.

Happy reading, folks!

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