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March 22, 2012

Review: 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. 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. 
Since contemporary novels have recently become my new guilty pleasure, I couldn't wait to delve into the world of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight. Not surprisingly, I finished reading in a matter of hours and was immediately swept up into emotions of intense fangirliness that will come to light in this review (you have been warned).

Statistical Probability follows a day, yes, one day, in the life of Hadley Sullivan. When I first heard the associations "love at first sight" and "set over a 24-hour-period", I was immediately intrigued. To her credit, Jennifer E. Smith creates a world that, though apparently impossible at first sight (pun intended), turns out to be incredibly realistic. I could honestly picture the concept of the story occurring in reality.

Two things stuck out to me in particular about this book--character development and use of third person present tense. Both Hadley and her love interest, Oliver, are absolutely mundane. They are two people with true visible emotions and personalities. The most basic memories shared between the two on their flight to London helped me end up adoring them as individuals and as a couple. (Also, Oliver being a Brit may have had a little something to do with it...) As for the tense, I was at first bothered by the present tense. It's not often that novels are written both in third person and present tense, so I was caught off guard. However, as the plot progressed, I began to notice and understand the author's reasoning behind the choice. A 24 hour time window certainly made it easier to use present tense. Additionally, despite the third person, it was easy for me to still get a look inside Hadley's head.

Overall, The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight was one of the cutest stories I've come across in a long time. I truly enjoyed the simplicity and would recommend it in a heartbeat to any fans of contemporary YA or romance readers.

Rating: 5/5 stars

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