Wednesday, March 7, 2012
The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
Who would have guessed that four minutes could change everything?
Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan's life. She's stuck at JFK, late to her father's second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon to be step-mother that Hadley's never even met. Then she meets the perfect boy in the airport's cramped waiting area. His name is Oliver, he's British, and he's in seat 18C. Hadley's in 18A.
Twists of fate and quirks of timing play out in this thoughtful novel about family connections, second chances and first loves. Set over a 24-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver's story will make you believe that true love finds you when you're least expecting it.
As a part time hopeless romantic, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to read this book. I hadn't heard much about the book, but from the description, it sounded great. Did it live up to that expectation? Yes!
I love the cover of this book. The way it is all black and white with the exception of the heart and "Love" it creates a very eye catching effect without being overwhelming. The overall style of the cover was great too, giving the book a light and happy appearance while showing the bustle of people around the couple. With the other people in the crowd blurs, the reader is left to assume that they symbolize the passing of time for the couple, even that it is limited. Another way the symbolism could be interpreted is that they are slowing down from their day to day hurries to really get to know each other while everyone else continues to hurry.
Characters are great when they are realistic, but favorable in the reader's eye. In the case of this book, the characters were both, fitting a great definition to which they were very faithful. In the case of Hadley, the protagonist, I found her to be relate-able to a certain extent, though I would have liked a little more time to get to know her better. I had the same issue with Oliver, even though the point of this book was to build a whirl wind romance, I would have liked a little more background on Oliver more than we learned as the book progressed. Both were dealing with challenges; Hadley's were featured more as she had her Dad's second wedding to attend and she was late to get there. As for the romance, I actually found myself favoring the instant connection that Hadley and Oliver had, though I am usually not an advocate for such short romances. As for the support characters, they were surprisingly strong in characteristics, having their own challenges to deal with.
During this book, only twenty four hours of the characters lives are captured, which gave the author more room for detail to help build the romantic side of the story that was needed to drive the plot forward. Plot-wise, this book was set to the right pace where the romance didn't leave you in the dust, but it didn't slow to the point of boredom either, it kept it at a happy medium so the reader could truly soak up the emotions of the characters. As for writing, it had a style with a certain kind of finesse to it that is hard to describe. It was never too heavy, but it did have it's emotional ups and downs that come with the territory of young love.
The end was truly satisfying for the reader, it had the perfectness of a fairy tale with the reality of a short amount of time together. Altogether, if you are in the mood for a short and sweet book with a heaping dose of cute, you will find it in The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, which I give 5/5.