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Hate to Love You

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Despite my slutty reputation, I was technically a virgin at eighteen. But it turns out all those sex-ed teachers aren’t just trying to scare you. The faint positive on a budget pregnancy test sent me spinning, moments before meeting my sister’s snooty new fiancé.

Shaking hands with upper-crusty James was like downing a triple shot of vodka. Dizzy with desire, confused by my body’s reaction, and shocked by the possessiveness flashing in his eyes, I deceived him that night and told the world at their wedding reception.

The truth?
I slept with my sister’s fiancé. Hot and sweaty, all night long in a room so dark he couldn’t tell I wasn’t her.

The lie?
Said fiancé is the father of my child. The one I signed over my rights to just before he was born.

That was seven years ago.

It’s time to come clean.

95,000 words

250 pages, ebook

First published January 1, 2014

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About the author

Elise Alden

3 books252 followers
Elise reads, writes and revels in romance, no matter the sub-genre. She 's drawn to flawed characters with a-typical backgrounds, people for whom love isn’t a simple matter of boy meets girl, but a gut-wrenching journey of transformation.

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5 stars
1,180 (30%)
4 stars
1,354 (35%)
3 stars
887 (23%)
2 stars
273 (7%)
1 star
151 (3%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 436 reviews
Profile Image for Kristen.
834 reviews4,768 followers
February 25, 2015


This is the second book this year that I find myself having a difficult time rating. I can't quite decide if I liked it or not. It certainly wasn't what I expected or even thought I would read, but I did find myself captivated and intrigued by this honest, raw, heartbreaking, and well written story. I found that if I didn't pay close attention to the storytelling, I would become confused; however, it never hampered my overall reading experience.

I'm also not sure how I would classify this book. Women's Fiction? Maybe. Romance? Not really. That said, there was a semblance of a love story that ended with a much deserved HEA.

Basically, Hate to Love You is about one woman's journey to right her wrongs. To find redemption in self-awareness, courage, and penance. It's about bad choices and heartbreaking consequences. It's about the inability for some to let go of jealousy and bitterness and the damage that causes the soul. But most of all, it's about forgiveness in all its multicolored and beautiful forms. It's a book I would never read again but one I'll never forget.

Note: There is a form of cheating in this book (between the two main leads) but it's the catalyst for the plot not the plot itself. That aspect of the story never bothered me as this book really isn't a romance in the true sense of the word.
Profile Image for Natasha is a Book Junkie.
682 reviews7,445 followers
July 12, 2014
“You’re still the woman I want to f*ck the second she comes into a room! The woman who occupies my thoughts and my dreams.”

Finding a good book is a high like no other for me, but finding a great one by pure chance is akin to winning the lottery to an avid reader like me. From the moment I read this book’s blurb, I have been obsessed with it. There is simply no other way to put it—obsessed with the unconventional storyline, drawn in by the tone of the narrative, but most of all, intrigued by how a plotline of that type could be turned into a love story. And let me tell you, my skin tingled from the very first page. It is incredible that a book of this caliber could be someone’s debut novel because the writing style is flawless, competent, truly sophisticated and engaging, and in no time, the story pulls you in like a rip current and your mind does not know which way is up. Nothing prepared me for the way it manipulated my mind, shaking all my previously held beliefs and preconceptions about certain scenarios, and stretching it in such a way that I wholeheartedly adored every convoluted, complicated, messy, borderline crazy part of it.

“A junkie. A sponger. A pregnant virgin who’d kissed her sister’s man in a fit of pique.”

Paisley is a troubled eighteen-year-old who feels unwelcome in her own family. Forever in the shadow of her hateful older sister Caroline, her every mistake stands in stark contrast to her seemingly perfect sibling. But Paisley’s rebellious nature is a mere reaction to a past marred by abuse, psychological neglect by her parents and systematic disparagement at the hands of her only sister. She has channeled all her anger and hurt into drug and alcohol abuse, coming across as a very cynical, defiant and promiscuous young woman, preferring to feed that image of her in people’s minds, rather than show her true nature to those closest to her.

When confronted with a positive result on a pregnancy test, Paisley finds herself facing impending motherhood technically as a virgin, her only sexual act not having even been one of a fully penetrative nature. Scared and confused, and drawn even more to her addictions as a means of escaping reality, Paisley’s life comes to a standstill when her sister Caroline returns home a few days before her wedding wishing to introduce her fiancé James to the family. Nothing could have prepared Paisley for her body’s reaction to her future brother-in-law, their attraction immediate and almost primal. But while James’ body says one thing, his verbal dismissal of her and his condescending tone deeply hurt Paisley, her jerk reaction being one of acting out her every desire out of spite, all consequences be damned.

“Maybe one day you’ll find a man who doesn’t mind settling for what you offer, but even if I didn’t love Caroline, you wouldn’t meet my standards, regardless of how long it’s been since I’ve had a screw up against the wall.”

One night of passionate love-making and drunken abandon, one case of mistaken identity, and Paisley finally loses her virginity to the only man she has truly ever physically connected with. But when the day of her sister’s wedding finally arrives, the mere idea of watching the man whom she still reluctantly desires getting married to a sister she detests, coupled with copious amounts of alcohol, lowers her already non-existent inhibitions and makes her spill the beans on their one night of passion in front of the entire bridal party, even claiming the groom to be the father of her unborn child. At this point, we are merely at the one-third mark in the storyline and the roller-coaster has just begun.

“What the f*ck had I just done?”

Seven years later, after turning her life around and conquering her addictions while studying and working abroad, Paisley returns to London wishing to seek absolution for her past mistakes and hoping to build some sort of relationship with the son she abandoned shortly after his birth. But some mistakes are easier to correct than others, and Paisley soon discovers the true consequences of all her lies, hurting James and changing his life forever being the hardest one to accept.

“I hate what I did to you. You offered me your friendship and I made you my enemy.”

Now, I will once more reiterate that this story is messy beginning to end, but to me in that convoluted messiness lies its true beauty. It does not pretend to give us perfect characters—they are flawed, misguided, self-absorbed and self-indulgent at times—but they also learn from their mistakes and try to make amends even when doing so could jeopardize their own happiness. The tone of the book, told in the heroine’s voice, remains frank and direct, especially as she explores the depths of her own imperfections, making her one of the most self-aware characters I have ever come across. That self-awareness made me fall in love with all her shortcomings, it made me empathize with her, understand her actions, and cheer for her until the very end.

“I don’t know whether I hated him or not. Maybe I did—in the way you can hate things that are forever beyond your reach.”

And amidst all that mess there is a beautiful love story, one I kept re-reading for days after I first finished this book, wishing to stay immersed in the storyline and to absorb every detail that I might have missed the first time around. There are elements of this story that I will not mention to you because they can only be understood in the context of the whole picture, but I can guarantee that at no point will this story stop holding you captive, titillating your mind and making it run in a million different directions while you attempt to come to terms with the characters’ actions and how they fit within your own set of moral beliefs. I personally loved Paisley, and I connected with every borderline crazy facet of her complex personality. But I am the type of person who is attracted to scenarios of ‘cause and effect’—I am drawn to characters whose actions are the result of something else in their lives, a single event or a whole history of them, and Paisley is the perfect example of a young woman who reacts to her surroundings almost instinctively, her every mistake speaking volumes about the pain she desperately tries to hide from the world around her.

I walked away from this book smiling, my heart so full from some perverse sense of satisfaction that the ‘underdog’ in life got what everyone always tried to prevent her from getting. This is not so much a story about redemption or even absolution in the end—it is a story about two people truly accepting each other, flaws and mistakes and all, and building their happy ending based on the knowledge that nothing in life would make them as happy as being in each other’s arms. I’m telling you again, however, this plotline is twisted, mind-blowing, far-fetched at times, but every part of it fit the story perfectly, and it was crazy beautiful in my eyes start to finish.

“I wish we’d never made love.”
“We didn’t make love. We f*cked. All night long.”

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Profile Image for Wil Loves Books!.
1,166 reviews476 followers
September 3, 2022
I really liked this book. Honestly, once I started reading it I couldn't put it down because it was so good! The book is definitely different and for some it may break the rules, but I didn't mind. I loved Paisley since page 1, she was young and ignorant in the beginning but she was able to redeem herself in a great way. James, I didn't like as much, although he redeem himself in the end, but I was left wanting more of him or his feelings for P. Regardless, the entire story was very good and full of emotion. Definitely happy I bumped this one on my very, very long TBR!

Re-read 9/2022 - I love this book, always have, always will. It's hard for me to describe why I love it as much as I do, lol. I just do. It's not everybody's cuppa, but it sure is mine. Punto Final!
Profile Image for Olivia | Books to Liv by.
235 reviews152 followers
March 8, 2015
Title: Hate to love you
Author: Elise Alden
Rating: 1 star

"There's no safe hideaways and no fairy tale endings. The bad guys get you and then they get away. End of story. It's what you do after the end that matters."

... And you, sweet Paisley, did an awful job of it... **throw confetti**

Okay, let's start. I read the blurb two weeks ago and I fell in love with the premises. Hard.
I said to myself: OMG, this book will break all the rules...
Well, it didn't.
It bored me to death.

The characters were so stupid, mean, wrong and angry I was at a loss for words.
James was unbelievably selfish and his attitude was pretty disturbing.


And Paisleeeeeey, sweet silly Paisley who didn't mind f**king her sister's fiancé, blowing up their marriage and leaving her own child behind... Her moral compass, OBVIOUSLY, didn't point to my own direction.
I'm sorry for cussing too much but this book made no sense at all.

And the ending?
When he admitted he had stalked her in Spain for days? Right there, I couldn't wrap my head around the mess the characters kept making.

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Profile Image for Karla.
986 reviews1,096 followers
March 1, 2015

4.5 Stars! Twisted, intense, captivating love story!

Paisley, the main female protagonist, does some despicable things in this story, which nearly caused me to stop reading, but it also intrigued me enough that I had to continue on! I'm glad I did, because although I didn't condone her actions, her age and bitter past explained her need for attention, and why she did those shameful things. You couldn't help but wonder what brought her to this deceitful place, and it's revealed as the story moves forward. Was what she did still wrong? Yes, but I still found myself sympathizing and rooting for her till the end! Inherently, Paisley is a good person, who made some hurtful and stupid mistakes.

James was not much better, and although he's presented as the good entity in this story, he should have known better, but lust clouds his thinking. His reaction towards Paisley is so intense and nearly out of his control, he just acts and doesn't think. He says and does some hateful things, which Paisley does, yet doesn't deserve. Confused me too! There's a strong sexual attraction, but also a protective nature that James feels toward her, and that's what endeared me to him. On the surface these two act one way, but once their hearts get involved there is no denying this is more than lust!

I wasn't sure this could possibly end well, but somehow, albeit a little far-fetched, it ends on a good note! I wanted to believe, so I bought it hook, line and sinker!

This was definitely a different type of read for me, and my hats off to Elise Alden for capturing my attention, arousing my curiosity, and keeping me entranced with her expressive writing and heady dialogue. Presenting the story from Paisley's point-of-view also allowed for more of a character/reader connection, which I think is the reason I felt sorry for her. Had it not been written from her perspective, my take on this story might have been unsympathetic on the heroine's plight. But, I took Paisley's journey with her...and in my book it's what made all the difference!

About the audiobook...
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I listened to the audio version of this book and the narration by Carmen Rose was amazing! While I probably still would have enjoyed the story had I read the book, this talented animated narrator embraced the story and Paisley's character, allowing me the full experience of Hate to Love You !
Profile Image for PeaceOfGod.
748 reviews242 followers
May 16, 2022
Alright , Idk man this is so messed up , i know i reviewed this 2 times already and i still erased the previous review cause at this point the timeline and the plot are very confusing and the spoilers aren't properly provided by anyone EXCEPT for my buddy Jena.

I PROMISE this is the LAST time i am reviewing this-

#️⃣Big Spoilers.

#️⃣The h was getting sexually abused by her uncle since she was little.

#️⃣Her sister let it happen, and told people lies to cover for the uncle, so the abuse continued because of her shitty sister.

#️⃣The h became totally messed up due to her sexual abuse that she endured over the years and years all because of said sister.

#️⃣The h in this book is bad, she's a trouble maker etc. also her parents constantly compares her to her perfect sister🙄. So I didn’t care that the h took the fiancée and cheated with him. She does not cheat on the H.

#️⃣She gave the baby away, for what’s best for him and she needed the money for rehab. The h was a druggie and an alcoholic. During the separation, 7yrs, he does see others , but the h doesn't because she was focused on fixing herself and she does redeem herself for her baby.

#️⃣And yes, the H cheated on the sister, but he didn’t know. The h pretended to be the sister in the dark.

#️⃣Lastly, truth came out on his wedding day. The h, while drunk, told everyone that she slept with the groom as a big fuck you to the sister lol… the H said at the end that he couldn’t be with the sister, so he never slept with her.

#️⃣he doesn’t cheat on the wife after marriage since they got a divorce right after

HUUUUUUUUUUUGE thanks to awesome Jena for spoilers.

Profile Image for Beeg Panda.
1,267 reviews421 followers
June 1, 2022

see NTS below:

I'm not supposed to like this book.
I much prefer "rose-colored-glasses" romance, with strong but sweet heroines and protective heroes.

She's nothing like my "perfect heroine".
She's practically beyond redemption.
Circumstances, fate and her addictive nature has her weak and broken and susceptible to all sorts of trouble a young girl shouldn't have to deal with. And she deals with ALOT of crap. Right up to the very end, really.

He's a dick.
A snooty, judgmental blue blooded prick.
I wanted her to break him.
To smear that arrogant smirk off his selfish, gorgeous, cheating face.
Sometimes I see the alpha in him, but mostly I think he's a bloody Neanderthal in expensive suits.

Their connection is beautiful. Explosive. Palpable.
Vivid and ugly and raw and wrong. It's possessive and jealous.
It's passionate, real and forbidden. So utterly sad and filled with guilt and remorse and hopelessness.
They're the epitome of a "beautiful disaster".

Ironically, it's this very strong bond that breaks them.
They annihilate each other.
She fucks his brain up - good and solid.
He brutally breaks her even further.
They hurt themselves and others and only one good thing comes from their joining,

It's told entirely from her POV, yet I can "see and feel" every emotion he experiences. ALL his emotions are over the top. Kudus to the author. If it weren't for this, I'd have given up on them before the end.

There are so many reasons to dislike this book but despite that I'm stubbornly sticking to my 4 star rating. I was sucked in by their personalities, vulnerabilities and strengths and all the other unexpected twists. I enjoyed the writing style even while it needs to be properly proofread.
Despite the fact that he doesn't fight for her, that the plot is based on one misunderstanding after the other, that they miss so much "together time", that there's no communication to talk of, I was glued to the pages that brought them to life for me.
Profile Image for Dhini.
189 reviews61 followers
June 11, 2014

A beautiful, touching, tear jerker book.

I loved it ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

It was a story about a girl who wants to gain the love of her family.
Love from her shit parents
Love from her bitch sister

Paisley is a drug addict, an alcoholic. She's a victim of her sister hatred.
And then there's James, her sister fiancée..
The first time they met, they felt the connection, and yes, it's a forbidden feeling..

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

An emotionally twists and turns reading
How Paisley struggled to stand on her own feet, to stay alive, to stay clean and sobber..
And now this time is to gain the love of her son..

Photobucket Pictures, Images and Photos

It's one of the best book I've ever read!!!
Profile Image for Jo - •.★Reading Is My Bliss★.•.
2,405 reviews208 followers
September 24, 2020
Paisley lives with her parents and her perfect older sister Caroline. Paisley is 19 years old and has issues with addiction to alcohol and pills. When she was younger something truly awful happened to her but when she spoke up about it, no one believed her and it caused a rift between her and the rest of her family.

Caroline treats Paisley like she is a piece of dirt on her shoe. She constantly puts her down and makes up so many lies about her. Paisley has no doubt that she is the big disappointment of the family, she is reminded frequently. When Caroline announces her engagement her parents are thrilled to meet her fiance James.

Paisley's first meeting with James is unusual and arousing. They pretty much mind fuck each other without saying anything. James is an upper class, well spoken lawyer. He is well suited to bitchy Caroline and she is thrilled to have met a man who will offer her status and a comfortable life. Too bad he is having x-rated thoughts about her sister...

Paisley loves to get a rise out of her family, she acts promiscuously and likes to sensationalize things. When an opportunity to one up her sister is presented she crosses a moral line that she knows she shouldn’t have but oh well, she is only living up to the expectations of her family after all. When she reveals all at her sister’s wedding in a drunken stupor, with a huge bare face lie as the cherry on top, it is the unravelling of the rest of her life.

Seven years later… Paisley has been living abroad, studying and working hard to turn her life around. She has now returned to England to face James for the first time since that terrible night. She wants to make amends, tell him her truths and see her son. This second part of the story had me reading as fast as I could! I’m not going to say anymore about this part as so much happens!

Another fabulous find in my back catalogue of unread books. I had the e-book but decided to listen to the audio version and I am SO glad I did because the narration was perfect! The British accents just added to the enjoyment of this reading experience for me. This truly is a messed up love story but so worth the time.
Profile Image for Amy J RAREtte4Life.
845 reviews283 followers
December 18, 2015
OMG anything that is offensive to die hard readers is not only in this book but occurs in the first 20% and I freaking FLOVED it. The lead heroine is British which I also loved. It was like a cheap thrill, all sucker punches but again I didn't care. Loved all the drama, one hit after another. With drama comes angst, I was SO in. loved it.
Profile Image for Fre06 Begum.
1,260 reviews211 followers
March 2, 2017
This book at times was really funny and I gotta say really enjoyed James!
Profile Image for Jac K.
2,097 reviews254 followers
February 12, 2023
I liked it. It has a unique “feel” to it. Parts are quite angsty, parts are funny, and some parts have an almost soapy feel to them. The blurb is a little confusing, and I don’t want to spoiler anything, so I’ll just say this is a woman’s journey of trying to right the wrongs of her past. The book is broken down into two parts, and Pt. 1 is no walk in the park. Paisley is not a likeable gal. She’s a drug using, alcoholic (even while pregnant) and purposely goes after her sister’s fiancé. What makes it tolerable is that her sister is a TOTAL BITCH, and she’s been through sexual abuse, and has a shit family w/ zero support. She’s hateful, hostile, selfish, but trauma is like grief… you can't really dictate how one processes. She definitely deals in an unhealthy manner, but it’s her journey to get through. If you can push through, it will FF 7 years in the future for part 2 as she tries to make amends, and she’s much better. It still takes a bit for her to get her adulting down, so you'll have to be patient with her for a while.

Ok, so the cheating… I marked it as cheating-ish because you know…it’s a gray area. BUT if you are the type of reader that feels all cheaters should burn in hell, and second chances are for suckers, then I’d skip. I’ll spoiler the deets, but Paisley and James have some weird almost paranormal feeling love at first sight thing. I’m not gonna lie, it’s weird, like they talk with their eyes, and can have convo’s in their heads. There’re also 2 virgin pregnancies where the males just put the tip in. (??) This and the humor aspect kept everything lighter; this isn’t one of those dark coming of age books like Free Flesh. The characters are definitely messed up and make seriously shitty choices, but there is a WAY lighter feel to it. It’s still serious…if that makes sense. (It's hard to describe) I know the wacky parts will sound really off-putting, but it just works somehow.

Bottom Line- It’s a smidge train-wrecky, and I have a feeling readers will either get sucked in or hate it. I personally got sucked in, I read last night until my eyeballs closed, and shushed my kids right after dinner to finish. The characters are flawed, but still surprisingly likeable. (It’s free to read if you have scribd.) There is the cheating to deal with, but the H & h don’t cheat on each other if that helps. I did not feel it was a sloppy/second best situation at all. Paisley takes a while to get the grown up thing down, but I was rooting for her.
Profile Image for Vintage.
2,448 reviews481 followers
March 2, 2017
I read this based on some friends' reviews . Once again, I should have stayed away from another story of siblings, sisters this time, sharing a beau even inadvertently. It's unfortunate for Hate to Love You by Elise Alden and Elise Alden that this literally comes on the heels of Cheater (Curious Liaisons, #1) by Rachel Van Dyken and Her Baby's Father by Anne Haven which share similar plot lines. Who knows, maybe in past life I did the deed or was cheated on in a similar way and this is a karma alert, but TRIGGER, trigger. Since I read on my computer, I couldn't throw it against the wall.

On top of the cheating pseudo incestuous issues, you have abusive parents, an evil and even more abusive and manipulative sister, and a heroine that is spiraling out of control with little desire to change. I am sure there was a huge second chance epiphany down the line, but I never got there. As for the hero, I have no idea.
Profile Image for Tori.
2,825 reviews479 followers
May 18, 2014
I just...can't. The blurb was confusing enough but once I started the book, it went from confusion to straight out "are you serious?"

First off- I despise euphemisms for sex organs. A penis is a penis-not a sword, love sausage, throbbing hot member, a velvet sheathed lead pipe. It's a penis. Call it a penis. I can only seem to handle the nicknames in historicals.

Second-A pregnant virgin?? What is THAT? How can that even be? Is this an immaculate conception? The whole biological improbability is astronomical. And to have it happen TWICE in one family? Oy vey.

Third- I'm sorry but stupid over the top dramatic characters aren't appealing. I understand fiction grants leeway but there has to be some grounding in reality. None of these characters should procreate. NONE.

I feel it's just best if I and this book part ways.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Jena .
2,245 reviews2 followers
June 8, 2023
Actually, I really liked this book, although I marked it as "only read when I'm drunk book" lol.

First half was 5 stars, the latter half was about 3.


- the H never slept with the h's sister.
The plot - sisters liking the same guy - was bearable, because h and I absolutely despised the sister.
I wouldnt even consider someone like her family, so I was fine with the h going after the H.
I wouldve been fine if the h had killed her at the end for what she did when they were little.

( Her sister helped her abuser (uncle) molest her.
She walked in and saw it happen with her own eyes, and instead of protecting her sister by telling someone or maybe stopping it even right then, she walked out and even started covering it up for him, so he could CONTINUE to abuse her for years! She was EVIL.)
Profile Image for Lost Between the Pages.
140 reviews11 followers
May 26, 2014
What can I say..this author really surprised me with this book. I honestly can't believe this is her first novel and I sure hope it isn't her last.

I loved some of the character and I hated some.

If your are looking for a book about fairytales and love at first sight you are in the wrong area my friend. This book is real it's raw it's life.

You will feel every emotion the heroine feels. This book will make you laugh cry and want to punch some of the characters.

Better review to come on release day

This was a great book and happy I had the chance to read it!
Profile Image for Christine (Shh Moms Reading).
1,329 reviews547 followers
August 3, 2016
I love when a book surprises me…I love it even more when its a rare gem among the many books published daily and that its totally addicting from page one. This is how I felt reading Hate to Love You. I read it while on vacation, enjoying a cocktail or two and was so immersed in this story that I was unable to put it down (yes I did read it in about a day and a half and yes I am excited to go back and read it again!). Books like these make me so happy, its the unknown of picking up a new author, having no idea what I am going to get myself into and then coming out excited and wanting to share this story with the masses. Hate to Love You made me feel all these things and more…I wanted to shout it outloud but alas I had no internet access and had to tell my hubby (who is not a book lover lol) how much I adored this book. And yes as soon as I landed home, the first thing I did was email Elise to let her know that this will be a hit. I truly believe that from my heart. It’s the books and themes that have never been done before, or maybe in a new way that capture your attention, pull at your heart strings that make you want to sing praises about and Hate to Love You makes me feel just that.

So without giving anything away because I do believe that this is a book that you will have to read for yourself and enjoy fully and completely, the blurb really says it all.

Paisley hates her sister and there is no love lost for her parents and sadly it goes both ways. With Caroline getting married to stick up his butt, James, the undeniable attraction when Paisley and James meet is unexpected yet exhilerating and exciting. *Mine*. Though Paisley is known as the slutty sister, once you get to know her flaws and all, you can understand the wall she built around herself, protecting herself. And though she says whats on her mind, is abrasive and rough around the edges, I like her…I like her a lot. A lot of what makes you who you are is how you are raised, how people treat you and this is the honest truth about Paisley. She is a product of those around her.

Hate to Love You is a well written trainwreck of a story..in a totally good way. And by trainwreck I mean, the 7 years between Paisley’s first encounter with James until she meets him again seemlingly all grown up with something to prove, are wasted time and opportunity for two people who were so meant for each other from the start. Deep down inside no one ever saw the good in her until James and to come back to face her past and redeem herself in his eyes is a feat I enjoyed reading. They will make lots of mistakes, there will be a lot of heartbreaks, lies and misunderstandings. But Ms. Alden did this so well because I was able to feel these things and experience them with these characters..I was in Paisley’s head through it all and I understood where she was coming from and prayed for this couple to find their happy acknowledging that no one is perfect but that in the end they could hopefully be perfect together.

It will be a hard road that these two characters will travel having to build trust and find forgiveness but for me, it was definitely worth the ride. I experienced so many emotions while reading – I cried, my heart was pounding constantly, I smiled and I laughed. I enjoyed every moment that I spent on reading this book.

For a debut novel, Elise Alden hit it on the nail. I will definitely read more from this author and look forward to what she has in store for us next. There aren’t many books that I will reread but I want to reread this one…I want to see the things that I may have missed as I consumed this book so rapidly, I want to feel the all consuming and palpable emotions that Elise was able to evoke in me..it was thrilling and complete bliss and when I closed my kindle I had a smile on my face.

This is a beautiful story of second chance love about two people destined for each other…its not your typical love story because the characters are so flawed but it will make you think, feel and truly believe in a love that is so captivating and real….I devoured this book and you will too!
Profile Image for Smitten's Book Blog.
337 reviews318 followers
July 5, 2014

I'm a little short on time these days, so here is a mini review.

This is another book that has me a little torn. Firstly... the whole pregnant virgin thing? I totally wasn't feeling that.

Secondly... I was soooo craving more James and Paisley. So much of this book was about them keeping their hands off of one another, but I just wanted to read about them getting their hands on one another!! I kind of felt like there was something missing and more could have been made of their desperation for one another.

However, having said that, I couldn't put this book down. I had to know how this crazy story was going to unravel itself.

“I wish we’d never made love.”
“We didn’t make love. We f*cked. All night long.”

If you don't like cheating, this might not be for you. However, personally, I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm a complete hypocrite. If the cheating is between my two lead characters, I'm very forgiving individual. Yet if one of my main characters cheats on the other, I turn into a raging bitch.
In this instance the cheating occurs with rather than on, so everybody was safe.

This is definitely a book that you will either love or hate. Some people will buy into James and Paisley's story, forgive their indiscretions and believe their love. But I can see some people not getting this at all and thinking the whole thing is too far fetched and ridiculous.

Personally, I was somewhere in the middle.

Have you read it? Tell us what you thought?

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Profile Image for Azet.
1,021 reviews228 followers
March 8, 2018
Holy Smoke...holy shit...

What a hot,smoking,sizzling,sexy...sexy as HELL...SEXY AS DOUBLE HELL ride full of emotional angst,powerful lust,ecstatic emotions of love and hate,and what people can go through..when it comes to both emotions.

Paisley are a foul-mouthed,blunt and bitchy teenager from the beginning,but we soon see that she really is a tortured heroine who had been let down by her family,and the horrible things she had to go through,no wonder she felt abandoned and hurt.But through her love for her son..and the hero she learns of her mistakes and she finally fights for her peace and happiness.

James Scoot Thomas...wow wow wow James!!!!Holy smoke what a sexy hero of a ALPHA MALE!!!!He lights the story up from the start and i was so intruged by his italian wild nature,his honorable heart..and his so unhidden desire and forbidden growing love to the sister of his fiance.

Mhmmm yeah,they are to be in-laws but the attraction and the crazy lust ignites and burns already from the second their eyes meet for the first time.They both hate to love each other and the sex-scenes were SMOKING HOT!!!!!!!!!

Just wow...this is one powerful romance Alden has created and i will CERTAINLY read more of her works!
Profile Image for Cassandra.
415 reviews7 followers
May 30, 2014
ARC kindly provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Apparently, I have a weakness for underdogs, because I rooted for Paisley the whole way through! Admittedly, she did some awful things, but I couldn't help but still want the best for her. I felt everything with Paisley. When she felt helpless and frustrated, I felt helpless and frustrated. When she felt cravings for drugs and alcohol, I completely understood. When she was desperate to see the child she'd given up, I was tense with the need for her to see him. When she hit rock bottom, I almost cried. The writing was just that good!

Paisley's parents and sister were awful to her. They didn't support or believe her about some bad things that happened to her, so she acted out. She chose to go the route of drugs, alcohol, and general misbehavior, which kind of created this feedback loop. Her family treated her poorly, so she purposely did things to upset them, then they were disappointed and embarrassed by her, which led to further mistreatment. When we later learn why Paisley's sister is the way she is, it kind of makes you feel bad for her, but it's so hard to forget the things she's done to Paisley.

But Paisley could not always play the victim. She lied, a lot. Sleeping with her sister's fiance was not cool and completely within her control. Not only did she contribute to James being unfaithful, she also took advantage of him, though I'm sure he enjoyed himself. There's also the big reveal at the wedding reception. I tend to experience second-hand-embarrassment for characters (even when they're not feeling first-hand-embarrassment) and that speech she gave had my stomach tied up in knots. It was amazing! And uncomfortable! I can't say that her sister didn't deserve to have her wedding day ruined, but there was a lot of collateral damage.

But this was all when she was 18 or so and we get to see a lot of growth in her character 7 years later. And the areas where she was lacking in growth, her best friend, Maria, called her out on it in the best way. The way that only best friends can get away with: brutal honesty. The kind of honesty that makes you feel like crap for ever thinking differently.

I enjoyed the "progression" of Paisley and James' relationship. They fought it for a long time but the sexual tension was thick the whole way through. James couldn't trust Paisley, for good reason. And as a self-protective measure, Paisley convinced herself she hated James for some reason or another and tried really hard not to fall into anything with him. But you can't help who you fall in love with, right?

I also really liked the progression of the story. The author gives you everything that happened in the past first and then continues on to 7 years later. Often, authors will just slowly reveal the path through flashbacks or alternate chapters between past and present. Both of those styles are extremely frustrating because it takes forever to get to the point. But that's not the case in Hate to Love You, thank God!

I absolutely adored this book! So much so that I gave up my nap that I religiously take before work to continue reading. I am definitely looking forward to more of Elise Alden's work!
Profile Image for Brittany.
586 reviews52 followers
June 6, 2014
Holy Moly! That was mind-blowing.


This is a book that everyone will be talking about for a long time. It has a little touch of everything thrown into it, and some things will shock you. I was left speechless and wanting more. I loved this book.

Hate To Love You is one of those books that you should go into blindly, without knowing anything except for the synopsis. There are many twists and turns in this book.

The writing is so well-done, I’m shocked that this is a debut novel. It will grab your attention and not let go until the very end.

The character development is another thing that is well-done in this book and another reason why I still can’t believe this is a debut novel from this author.

If I ever stumbled upon a time machine and was given the chance to go back in time and read a book for the first time again, this is the book I would choose.

I am awe of this amazing story. It’s a roller coaster, the most thrilling roller coaster ride I have ever been on. My palms sweated, my heart raced, I gasped, I couldn’t breathe during a few scenes, and in the end I felt like throwing my hands up in the air and screaming as loud as I could.

There’s a lot of things that happened in Hate To Love You and I’m pretty sure if I go back and re-read it I will discover something that I overlooked or didn’t see the first time.

There’s a lot that I can’t tell you about, but I will tell you these things: Paisley is a character that you want to hate, but you just can’t. There’s a bunch of reasons to hate her, however since the book is in her perspective you will know things that the other characters don’t. You will know and understand her reasons for things that she does, you will feel sorry for her, and you will love her. You will understand and know her. She’s brave and strong. James is the same way, there’s a few reasons to hate him also but you just can’t.

Both Paisley and James are flawed, and you will connect with them. Your heart will ache for them. Paisley is the type of character that you root for, she’s been through the gutter, and you will want her to have her happy ending. It takes her a while to get there but she eventually does get her happy ending and I shed a few tears for her when she did.

You need to go to Amazon asap and one-click this one, skip reading the reviews and spoilers just click it and read it. It’s a story everyone should read at least once in their lives. Elise Alden is a wonderful author and I’m going to read whatever she releases from now on.

Hate To Love You is a wild and bumpy ride, just remember to hold on tight.
Profile Image for Hildy.
468 reviews65 followers
June 1, 2018
Sometimes I wish I didn't have to give a rating. This is one of those times. I've been sitting on this review for about 2 days because I was trying to wrap my brain around how I felt about this. It's one of those stories that is just so messed up and yet I couldn't put this sucker down! I read it in one day.

There were many times where I just didn't think that what happened was very plausible. It even bordered on Fantasy at brief moments, which isn't my thing. Now , I know that some of you read your fiction for entertainment and you don't really care if you like the characters, or if plot points seem possible, as long as you are entertained. This will be for you, because there is A LOT going on. For others, messed up characters can be too much for you and if that's the case, I'd say to skip it.

Paisley is an 18 year old addict and alcoholic who is the black sheep of her family and basically of her whole town. She doesn't try to change anybody's opinion of herself even if those opinions are not entirely accurate. She feeds these rumours because she's given up caring what people think. Now, Paisley is hard to like, but I seemed to like her anyhow. That doesn't mean that I didn't want to reach through the book and cover her mouth with my hand and make her stop talking, because I DID. :) She has a filthy mouth and is quite shocking but that's the show she puts on for everyone. Paisley meets someone and the attraction is instant (the air was charged and atoms were zapping *eyeroll*) although he belongs to someone else. Poor decisions and implausible situations occur and shit hits the fan. It's whacked, but I couldn't look away! This is where the story starts to get better and I started to really care about Paisley and cheer for her. Up until this point, I wanted to slap everybody. I ended up caring about how it would all turn out, even though it was pretty predictable.

To tell you the truth, I really want someone else to read this and let me know what you think. I'm all over the place and can't write a coherent review. :)

*I received an ARC via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review*
2 reviews
April 3, 2018
I would describe this book as Dark and Lovely. After reading some of the reviews I almost didn't read this book. Luckily I went with my gut and was not let down. This book gave me withdrawal symptoms. I had to read it all the way through to find out what was going to happen next. It was a very emotional read. It had some serious topics and some heart wrenching moments, that is one of the main reasons why I liked it so much. This book reminds you that love and life are not perfect. Many reviews made Paisley, the heroine, come off as such an unforgivable and despicable person. I could relate to her from the beginning and understood her actions and the catalyst that led her to those bad decision (not saying they weren't wrong). I was rooting for her to find her way.
Profile Image for Brittany L..
136 reviews
April 14, 2017
Read it! Read it! Highly recommended

This book far surpassed my expectations... Elise's writing style was beyond impressive, I loved every word, every inner-thought and every character flaw. This is seriously the best book I have read this year

Never have I experienced such a wide range of emotions that I did with this book! Every detail related to this story was perfectly woven throughout the book.

I could re-read this book over and over again, I absolutely love it!
Profile Image for Donna ~ The Romance Cover.
2,761 reviews317 followers
December 9, 2014
Hate to Love You by Elise Alden
4 stars!!

“So. Truth or Lies?”

So I was going through my kindle downloads to choose my next read and this one grabbed my attention. This is one of those books that I had downloaded just because of the blurb and cover and is an author I hadn’t heard of or read before. So I dived in…

I love finding hidden treasures and for me, this was definitely one of them. For one, this is set in the UK, so being a Londoner through and through I could really connect with the characters and the setting. To be honest, this book should have been a car crash, the plot lines, although “can happen” did seem extremely farfetched so I should have been eye rolling galore, however, I absolutely loved this book.

Once I started reading I could not put it down and actually pulled an all-nighter just to finish. Maybe it was curiosity to see how it all panned out but it was kudos to the author for keeping me thoroughly entertained and engrossed from first to last page.

Paisley is not the most lovable character on the outside, but once you get to see the real Paisley underneath the bitchy persona that she puts out you understand her initial brash, say it how it is character. Her mouth has no filter at all, but this is one trait that I loved about her, warts and all I couldn’t help but love her, even though initially I felt I shouldn’t. However, my intuition was good because Paisley was definitely not the bitch in this story.

“I was more damaged and more twisted than he could ever guess, not to mention all my other faults. A junkie. A sponger. A pregnant virgin who’d kissed her sister’s man in a fit of pique.”

Paisley had been hurt in the past and the fact that she didn’t have the support network that she should have had around her led her down a path of devastation and destruction, truly becoming the black sheep of the family. Trying to get herself on the straight and narrow it seems that she just cannot help but fail miserably. One fumble, no hymen broken leads to her getting pregnant, I thought this was a tad unbelievable but after googling (yes I actually googled) it is possible!! Coming from a catholic family Paisley knew that this was by far her worst offense to date and was inwardly panicking and trying to come to terms with her current predicament. Alcohol and drugs had never been so appealing.

Paisley’s sister Caroline is due to get married in a matter of months and Paisley begrudgingly attends the family dinner as a get to know the future brother-in-law. Nothing could have prepared Paisley for the intense connection that she instantly felt towards James and to be honest it seemed to be reciprocated. James was an extremely wealthy lawyer, coming from an extremely wealthy family and Caroline being a lawyer herself seemingly was his ideal partner even though she came from a “normal” family. The brash, no filter, no holds barred Paisley was a far cry from her sister. Seemingly out to shock, Paisley paints the persona that James had been lead to believe about her and you can see him visibly cringe and wonder how on earth the two sisters could even be related, however that chemistry that I first spoke about still sizzles, well burns like an inferno. It seems opposites really do attract.

“Maybe one day you’ll find a man who doesn’t mind settling for what you have to offer, but even if I didn’t love Caroline you wouldn’t meet my standards, regardless of how long it’s been since I’ve had a screw up against the wall.”

So we have a pregnant virgin, a sister who I hated with a passion, a groom, a wedding and a YouTube video called “Trash at the Bash.” The connection and the story that connects all of the above points are priceless!! Their story should be on a show like Jeremy Kyle/Jerry Springer but was definitely a car crash at its best. I laughed, I cried, I cringed, I loved, I hated but most of all, I just couldn’t put it down.

“You’re still the woman I want to fuck the second she comes into a room…The woman who occupies my thoughts and my dreams…”

The thing I loved the most about Paisley, is that she knew who she was through and through. She knew her weaknesses, she never tried to be anyone different, she was a take it or leave it person. She wants to try and be a better person but life always seemed to deliver a curveball when she least expected it. Despite everything that is thrown at her, she tries to get on top, she tries to make the most out of what life has dealt her and she fights for what she wants even if she has to be a tad underhand to get it. She doesn’t make the right choices or even the best choices but she realises her mistakes and tries her best to put things right. I loved her and I wanted her to succeed and to get the HEA that she deserved.

For a debut book this was a little gem. I loved the writing style; the story flowed and pulled me in hook, line and sinker. I would have never guessed this was a debut; the writing was proficient, fluid and captivating with the perfect balance of angst, emotion and humour. I love to take a chance on an unknown and once again I feel as if I have come up trumps, I can’t wait to see what else this author has written and will definitely be giving them a read.

“Punto final.”


Profile Image for Alex Kinley.
Author 1 book17 followers
May 31, 2014

**Received ARC from Net Galley in exchange for honest review**

Hate to Love You was a hilarious tale about bad decisions and fate. It was a well-written novel full of entertaining conflict and saddled with forbidden lust/love/sometimes hate. The story was cute and light-hearted with some heavy undertones.

Paisley was the black sheep of her family. People expected the worse from her so that’s pretty much what she gave people. Her worst. She was gritty and brash and she had what my American brain would consider a British wit (a Brit wit) that I adored. She and her many flaws truly made this story a delight to read.

James seems like a pompous, high-class, entitled snob for a lot of the story. He’s hard to read in some instances but then he has these moments where his character shifts and you see him as he really is. It felt like Paisley broke a barrier with James for him only to rebuild it after she stepped away. James and Paisley had more in common than he initially wanted to admit.

I found the paranormal-ish part of the story a little strange but I actually began to like it. It was a funny addition to the story although it still went slightly over my head at times. It’s making me want to Google whether this is a real thing that people can do. If so, I’m afraid for my life.

This story was amazing. It was sexy, humorous, sometimes intense. I loved that our narrator was so very flawed yet so very lovable at the same time. This seemed like it was written with ease. The story flowed effortlessly. Nothing was stretched and I believed all the author’s choices. Job well done Elise.
Profile Image for Angela.
112 reviews
March 1, 2016

That right there sealed the deal for me with this book. As I was reading that quote, I was literally sobbing. I've never related more to a heroine than I have with Paisley. I have a hundred more books to read and she is, by far and will probably always be my favorite, hands down. Paisley literally, had me laughing out loud. It wasn't too over the top and her delivery was spot on! Sure, some of her life choices were questionable, immoral perhaps, but I personally couldn't blame her. Given her situation and what she went through ESPECIALLY with that sister of hers, I can't say that I wouldn't have done the same. While reading and relating to Paisley, I fell hard for James too. In the beginning, not so much but what he does to protect Paisley towards the end AND showing her unconditional love, all that got me right in the feeler.

I've heard the term "book hangover," thrown around a lot and never really "got it." I do now. I usually dive right into another book but I found myself constantly thinking about this book, talking about this book and going back and highlighting everything. I highly recommend this book and am SO glad that it was recommended to me!

Punto Final.
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