Audio Review | How to Date a Douchebag: The Learning Hours by Sara Ney

He’s not a douchebag;
but that doesn’t stop his friends from
turning him into one.

So much so that they plastered my ugly mug all over campus, in bold printed letters: Are you the lucky lady who’s going to break our roommate’s cherry? Him: socially awkward man with average-sized penis looking for willing sexual partner. You: must have pulse. Text him at: 555-254-5551 

The morons can’t even spell. And the texts I’ve been receiving are what wet dreams are made of. But I’m not like these douchebags, no matter how hard they try to turn me into one. 


One text stands out from hundreds. One number I can’t bring myself to block. She seems different. Hotter, even in black and white.   However, after seeing her in person, I know she’s not the girl for me. But my friends won’t let up—they just don't get it. Douchebags or not, there's one thing they'll never understand: GIRLS DON’T WANT ME. Especially her.

He’s seated at a table in the far corner when I spot him from the door. 

He’s not hard to miss—not with his purple t-shirt in a sea of black and yellow, and wavy mussed hair. He’s slouching, hunched over his table. 

Defeated. Tired

My stomach rolls with nerves, nerves that have me rooted to the spot in the doorway, watching him. Just watching. 

For the entire four minutes I stand here, he sits immobile, studying his laptop, eyes moving along the screen, completely transfixed by whatever he’s reading. Learning. 

“Just go over there,” I whisper to myself, blowing out a puff of pent-up air. 

I put one foot in front of the other and begin toward him, spine ramrod straight, steeling myself, prepared for another argument. Twenty feet. Fifteen. Eight. Two. 

“Hi.” No reply. “Do you mind if I sit here?” I lay my hand on the back of the wooden chair across from him, intending to pull it out.  He stiffens but doesn’t lift his head. 

“Yes I mind.” 

“Would you mind if I sat at the table next to you?” I’m pushing his buttons, looking for a reaction, but he only spares me a brief glance. Shrugs. 

“Free country.” I bite my lip to hide a smile, glad he didn’t tell me to take a hike...      

I was a Sara Ney virgin prior to listening to The Learning Hours. Now, I can’t wait to go back and listen to the first two books in the series. I was expecting to meet a douchebag in this book, but the hero was far from it. Rhett was adorable, sweet, and downright swoony. I felt terrible for him, and the way he’s treated by just about everyone. Because those around him focus on his lack of physical attractiveness, he too thinks poorly of himself and figures he doesn’t deserve the time of day from a girl. But fortunately, Laurel is no mere girl. She is sassy, wild, and blunt. She’s beautiful and she knows, yet she doesn’t act like a stuck up witch.

I never felt like Laurel was making fun of him, so when the truth comes out about the reason she initially made contact, it seems blown out of proportion a bit. I guess I’m the only one, but I read her as actually giving him a chance, not necessarily romantically, but as a friend. She befriends him, gets to know him, and along the way, she realizes just how amazing he really is. If she truly was that superficial she would make jokes left and right, or better yet, not even give him the time of day. Maybe I found Rhett’s teammates so deplorable that Laurel seemed like a kind kitten.

Rhett’s teammates were insufferable. They made me so mad, and really ruined the reading/listening experience for me. I know they made the storyline possible, but I wanted to punch them in the face way too many times. They act so immaturely that it felt like they were high schoolers or college freshman. They more than made up for Rhett’s lack of douchey-ness. 

The text messages that Rhett receives from the other girls are outrageous, yet totally believable. Those girls are absolutely crazy in the skankiest way, and they juxtaposed the text messages between Rhett and Laurel nicely. I really liked these two characters, and I especially liked the unorthodox way they come together. They help each other grow, and step out of their comfort zones, and I enjoyed seeing their relationship blossom.

The audio really was done so well. The narrators added fun to already hilarious character interactions. They never sounded over the top or cheesy, and the humor was always on point. The French was spoken beautifully, as well. These voice actors WERE Rhett and Laurel. Together, individually, they brought Rhett and Laurel to life. I wish this had been a dual narration, though. Muffy’s narration overall was slightly better than Josh’s, but it was great nonetheless.


Sara Ney is the USA Today Bestselling Author of the How to Date a Douchebag series, and is best known for her sexy, laugh-out-loud New Adult romances. Among her favorite vices, she includes: iced latte's, historical architecture and well-placed sarcasm. She lives colorfully, collects vintage books, art, loves flea markets, and fancies herself British. She lives with her husband, children, and her ridiculously large dog.