And what Hasselbeck said really "surprised" the author of the book.
Telling TooFab he wasn't shocked the show referenced his work, "Ladies Who Punch: The Explosive Inside Story of The View," Ramin Setoodeh said he was taken aback by Elisabeth's reaction to an early excerpt. In the book, O'Donnell admitted to a "crush" on her former cohost, said there were "underlying lesbian undertones on both parts" and used Hasselbeck's past playing softball to suggest she could be "a little bit gay."
In response, Elisabeth said the comments were "reckless, untrue and not only insulting, disturbing when it comes to how she felt about somebody in the workplace."
"I'm not surprised that they brought it up because I think 'The View' always asks about stories that are in headlines," said Setoodeh, "but I was a little surprised about her response because it seems like she took it so personally."
"I think what Rosie was saying was different than how Elisabeth interpreted it," he continued. "I was a little surprised that she spoke about it so harshly and seemed so upset about it as opposed to just saying it's cool Rosie O'Donnell had a crush on me. It wasn't like Rosie was trying to insult her, Rosie was just talking about having a non-sexual crush on her."
During her "View" appearance, Hasselbeck also said that "if you replace what Rosie said and you take her name out and you put in 'Ruben' or 'Robert,' we would be in a situation where you would see the objectification of a woman in the workplace and that's disturbing." She added, "You don't get a pass because you're a lesbian, objectifying a woman in the workplace."
She went on to say the feeling "Was not mutual" and said it was "reckless to attach a sexuality" to those who are athletic. Elisabeth added she "really prays that [Rosie] can have the peace that she deserves." For her part, Rosie later tweeted she "never objectified" her ex-cohost and the crush was "not sexual."
The book is filled with other stories from the set of the morning show, some from the many different cohosts and moderators themselves, including Barbara Walters, Star Jones and current seat-holder Joy Behar. So far, Rosie's comments about Elisabeth are the only ones the show has talked about on air.
Setoodeh said he hopes the book sparks more conversation at the Hot Topics table though now that it's been released.
"I think the thing that makes 'The View' such a big show is that the ladies of the table will talk about anything and everything and this book is obviously something that's in the headlines," he explained. "I look forward to the show talking about it and I think journalistically they should because most of the people on the show participated in it."