The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight

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. (Goodreads)

The Story:

Due to fly to London to attend her father’s second wedding—the one where he marries the woman he left his family for—Hadley misses her plane by four minutes.

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Four minutes. Think about how little can be done in that time. You can make a phone call.  Check an e-mail. Get dressed (hopefully there isn’t much you can do undressed). But four minutes is not a very long time.

In this case, not only is it the difference between making her flight or not, it’s the moment that pushes Hadley to the next available flight, to a seat near Oliver, cute British guy extraordinaire. The two pair up in the terminal and subsequently spend the rest of the time chatting it up, snoozing and almost, almost kissing.  In short, Oliver charms the socks off Hadley.

In these fateful moments, as they begin to fall for each other just a teensy bit, they forge a sort of sweet bond.  Hadley examines her fears about facing her father, about seeing his new life—the one she’s hardly a part of— and meeting his new bride. And she has to ask herself how she feels about saying goodbye to Oliver, who, in the past few hours, has turned out to be an impossibly adorable guy.

My Take:

I totally enjoyed this one. Hadley and Oliver have great chemistry and cute conversations. They have moments that flow easily and those that are awkward and stunted, both which felt so real to me.  There are a lot of flashbacks in this story, all giving insight into Hadley’s family, the dissolution of her parent’s marriage, and about how she’s avoided her dad and his fiance’ for a year. Her anger and her pain are vivid without being overly emo—after all, this is a light, cute read—and the relationship between her and her father was a sweet surprise.

I would have loved to have seen more interaction between Hadley and Oliver. It all starts off great. And at some point they obviously have to separate (not necessarily permanently). While the way it’s written is probably more realistic, I was expecting more of a Before Sunrise-esque story than it turned out to be. They aren’t actually together that much.

Ahh, remember when grungy-cute was hot?

Overall, the main idea was really hopeful and while the jury is still out on whether or not they truly experienced love at first sight, it was definitely a good beginning.

Crush Intensity: 3.75/5

The Way I See It:

Lucy Hale as Hadley

Douglass Booth as Oliver

Thanks to my girls at Gone Pecan for sharing their copy of this book with me!

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18 thoughts on “The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight

    • Yes, I think he’s going to have to be my go to when casting Cute British Guys. He’s in the new Romeo and Juliet (the period one with Hailey Steinfeld). I just saw some pics from it and I have to say…not diggin the hair. But that’s ok.

  1. I think Maggie and Dixie need to loan their copy to me 😉 I’m SO wanting to read this one! It seems like a great summer read. Also… I’m not really sure what we were thinking with the grungy-hot, but boy… was it EVER hot!

      • Ha! I still have it. Thank goodness I’m a procrastinator! I can send it to Candice and then send Starters and The Hunt (finally finished) to you Mags. Candice, e-mail me your address! I probably won’t get to the post office until next Wed or Thurs.

    • I don’t know either, but I was so into Ethan Hawke during his Reality Bites/Before Sunrise period. When I see those films now I still think he’s way cute (my mind must revert back to 90’s mode), but I can acknowledge that perhaps he should shower more.

  2. This book sounds like a fun read. Right now i’m in the market for a good summer read, think i should add this one to my list?

  3. DOUGLAS BOOTH. He totally would make a great Oliver. I effing loved this book. It’s so insighful, real, and gives hope for that kind of crazy love that happens over a 24 hour period. An instalove that’s completely believable. And the familial aspects? Boy, did I cry with certain scenes. This one really hit home.

  4. Pingback: Top Ten Tuesday- Books for People Who Like Dessen « YA Crush

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