Thursday, July 18, 2013

Review: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight - Jennifer E. Smith

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight
Jennifer E. Smith
Series: N/A
Genre: Young Adult, Romance
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Word Rating: Genuine and Adorable
On Goodreads

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight is a very light, heartwarming read. It centers around teenage girl Hadley Sullivan, who is on her way to London for her father’s wedding. Of course, she misses her flight by four minutes, and even though she’s put on the next one, she’ll have to make a mad dash from the airport to the wedding if she wants to have any chance of making it there on time. Those four minutes end up making all the difference when she ends up sitting next to a handsome British boy, Oliver, on the plane ride over. This results in a whirlwind of a day, not the boring flight Hadley was expecting.

The prologue of this novel did a very good job giving the audience some insight into who Hadley is. There are a lot of “ifs” as she thinks about how she managed to miss her flight.
“If the wheel of her suitcase hadn’t been off-kilter.”
“If she’d run just a bit faster to the gate.”
Hadley’s anxiety and panic is clear from the get-go. And it continues throughout the book. She is claustrophobic and prone to panic attacks and really does not want to go to this wedding. As a character, I really liked Hadley. I thought her anxiety-ridden demeanor was amusing, and she was pretty smart and witty, too. She kept up a witty banter with Oliver – her companion on the plane – and was a very three dimensional character. She overthought everything and had a fear of mayo and most of all, she resented her father for getting married to a woman who wasn’t her mom and leaving their little family broken.

And then we have Oliver. He’s a college student at Yale who also says he’s on his way to a wedding. Oliver is as lighthearted as Hadley is serious, as outgoing and laid-back as she is reserved and worrisome. However, they seem to click and bond over their plane ride and it becomes clear that Hadley is a lot more open than meets the eye. She also isn't afraid to say what she thinks and while Oliver seems to not have a filter, either, he definitely has his secrets.

The novel was full of great dialogue, which was personally my favorite thing about it. We have Hadley and Oliver’s amusing conversations, like
“I’ve been to all [the states] but one actually.”
“You’re kidding.”
Hadley shook her head. “Nope, we used to take a lot of family road trips when I was younger.”
“So you drove to Hawaii? How was that?
She grinned. “We thought it made more sense to fly to that one, actually.”
“So which one have you missed?”
“North Dakota.”
Of course, when asked where he’d want to go if he could be anywhere in the world, he just had to reply with North Dakota.

In fact, he seems to give joking responses to every question he’s asked. A recurring one throughout the novel is what he’s studying for his summer research project. He gives her every possible topic, from different styles of dancing to the fermentation process of mayonnaise to the statistical probability of love at first sight.

Hadley and Oliver hit it off right away and Hadley finds herself thinking:
“Is it possible to not ever know your type – not to even know you have a type – until quite suddenly you do?”
The plane ride is filled with getting to know each other. Jennifer E. Smith uses flashbacks and dialogue to tell the audience more about her character’s, which really makes the readers connect to them. We learn about exactly how angry Hadley is at her father, but glimpses of her childhood show that he isn’t a terrible person, just someone who has made some mistakes. Hadley makes her fair share of mistakes, too, one of them being losing sight of Oliver in the airport. During their time apart, she thinks:
“He’s like a song she can’t get out of her head. Hard as she tries, the melody of their meeting runs through her mind on an endless loop, each time as surprisingly sweet as the last, like a lullaby, like a hymn, and she doesn’t think she could ever get tired of hearing it.”
At this point, Hadley’s feelings are becoming clearer, but Oliver’s are a bit more of a mystery. I love that even though this was in third person point of view, Smith kept the focus on Hadley’s thoughts and left an air of mystery surrounding Oliver.

Overall, this book was very cute and I was drawn in by the story line. I loved the characters and I found myself passionately feeling Hadley's resentment and her father's despair and Oliver's own anger, too. It was a good way to spend a few hours and I would definitely recommend it to others.

- Noor

Do you have any interesting travel stories?
Let us know in the comments!

No comments:

Post a Comment