Wednesday, March 13, 2013
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
AUTHOR: Jennifer E. Smith
PUBLISHER/YEAR: Poppy/Little Brown / 2012
Goodreads / Author's Website
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (Okay, last time I ever type out the full name of this one!) is one of those books that I've been hearing about for ages that I just never got around to reading. Well, it popped up on a sale list for my e-reader and I couldn't resist. I'm really glad I snapped this one up when I did because it was just a quick and cute read that had some emotional depth. It was a book that just left me feeling good at the end.
Hadley's on her way to her father's wedding in England and between her anger at her father and the fact that she's never met the bride, she's pretty angry. To top it all off she's missed her flight and is stuck at the airport. Kind of the worst day ever. But then she meets Oliver, the cute British boy sitting next to her and everything seems just a little bit better.
So everybody's been saying this book is a case of insta-love done right. I was skeptical because well, it's just so hard to believe! But really, it's true. Sure it's a love at first sight across the baggage kind of thing, but it's just so great and it's not like they're preparing their walk down the aisle. I think the thing is, they're falling in love, but don't rushing major declarations. You can just sort of watch it play out over the course of 24 hours and you know there's still room for growth.
I pretty much love contemporary romances so you know I'm going to like this one, but I think it's particularly well done. It's a pretty light and fast read, but it definitely brought a couple of tears to my eyes. Hadley is a pretty relatable character. She seems like a pretty good kid, but she makes some pretty understandable mistakes. And I totally get her reaction to grief, like I'm pretty sure if I was in that situation I would act out a little, get a little surly. But she's caring and you can totally see where she's coming from.
Oliver is more of a love interest than a super well drawn character, but I was kind of okay with that. So Hadley doesn't know him that well, they just met. She knows she likes him; he's shown to be considerate. And well I kind of like reading a story about two decent people finding each other.
There are some twists and turns throughout the book and even though it is overall pretty light, there are some real feelings here. Divorce, remarriage, grief these are all pretty tough things to deal with and are pretty expertly woven into what could be a typical love story. But I love that we get to see these people through the good and bad, all within a day. I love being shown multiple sides of a character and Smith just did such a wonderful job.
What really sets this book apart for me is the relationship the teenage characters had not only with each other, but with their families. Family played such a huge role in this book. And like, neither family is perfect and they all struggle so much, but there's love. I loved watching Hadley sort out her conflicted feelings for her father and even Oliver gained some insight into his fractured family relations. No character is perfect, but they're trying. They're growing and learning about each other. It was just a really great take on modern family dynamics that I could totally get behind!
Seriously, this is romance done right. It's sweet, it's got heart, it's got characters who i just GOT. So if you want to read a contemporary romance, maybe take a look into this one. I know I'll be anticipating Smith's next book (comes out in April)!