Book Review: The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight

It’s been a while since I’ve last posted a blog – mostly because I’ve had no reason to – but I found this book and got so engulfed into it that I finished it in three days. Yes, I’m a “grown” woman reading a young adult novel, I’m simply telling you that it’s a book worth reading, no matter your age. It’s quick, it’s easy to read, and you fall into the story wanting to know what’s coming next.

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight is a novel by Jennifer E. Smith, published by Poppy Publishing in 2012.

Today should be one of the worst days of seventeen-year-old Hadley Sullivan’s life. Having missed her flight, she’s stuck at JFK airport and late to her father’s second wedding, which is taking place in London and involves a soon-to-be stepmother 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 sitting in her row.

A long night on the plane passes in the blink of an eye, and Hadley and Oliver lose track of each other in the airport chaos upon arrival. Can fate intervene to bring them together once more?

Quirks of timing play out in this romantic and cinematic novel about family connections, second chances, and first loves. Set over a twenty-four-hour-period, Hadley and Oliver’s story will make you believe that true love finds you when you’re least expecting it.

The main reason I fell quickly into this book is the excitement of knowing Hadley’s going to meet someone that will change her life, even if it’s only for one plane ride from New York to London. Obviously, since this is a YA novel, nothing obscene will happen – which I love (I thoroughly enjoy innocent love stories) – as everything is simply conversation and body language. As I was a psychology major, I wasn’t incredibly fond of the cliché conversation between a non-psych major and a psych major, which made me slightly annoyed, but the conversation was playful between the two, so I let the cliché-ness go. I feel that the personal story Hadley has – she has anxiety – helped her and Oliver connect, as he kept her company while she did the same for him, though she didn’t know it at the time.

The story gives you many flashbacks in Hadley’s life to give you a little more about her past and why she feels the way she does about her father and why she’s not thrilled about going to – and being in – his wedding. The flashbacks give great context, but sometimes they’re slipped into the story without warning, making it a bit confusing for a sentence or two.

As much as we all enjoy a cute love story, it’s the other storylines throughout that make the whole story even better. It’s not just about a budding love between two strangers, but it’s also about family and second chances.

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