Monday, July 23, 2012

The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight (with a random rant that I'll admit, kind of came out of nowhere)

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. 

Every now and then whether you’re feeling down in the dumps, lonely, miserable or are just plain ol’ in wanting of some <333 books, you have to accept the fact that as much as we all defend the YA genre and blabber on and on about how it’s so much more than high school romance and love triangles galore, we... LOVE THE SAP! Or at least I do. That said, it’s kind of a shame that paranormal romance and the like has almost practically degraded our favorite genre to the point where we’re all either embarrassed to read a book with a “girly” cover out in public, or own up to reading YA in the first place. There are SO MANY books that contain romance as the main focus, or that have a boy as the main counter-part of the story, but IT’S NOT ALWAYS A BAD THING!
Truth be told, I could go on and on with this subject, but I’ll cut it short and make my point by recommending a book that is one of the truest examples of how great a teen romance can be!

TSPoLaFS was all I hoped and heard it’d be and more! It embodies everything that is not only good in YA, but in great storytelling in general, all bundled up into a binding of awww<333esome (because there were quite a few of aww<333 moments).

Very rarely do I come across a main character who is actually smart and so easy to empathize with. Now I don’t mean that as a back-handed comment towards any other authors, it’s just that I found Hadley’s persona very refreshing and sincere given her circumstances. She’s not only having to come to terms with the fact that her parents are indeed dunzo and definitely not getting back together, but also having to travel half-way across the world to attend her father’s wedding to a woman she’s never met. Add in the fact that she’s also not on the best of terms with her dad which only makes the incident of missing her flight to London by mere minutes look suspiciously intentional, and you’ve just about got her dilemma summed.

I’ve always been weirdly philosophical when it comes to fate (which btw, let’s be real, is about as philosophical as I get) and used to fantasize and build up scenarios in my head regarding the whole butterfly effect, chance, coincidence, etc., such as, “What if I was totally meant to fail that algebra test?” (har har, I can dream) or, “Maybe missing the bus to campus was a good thing?” And yeah, ok, I know it may sound pretty ridiculous, but it’s happened before! I have totally missed the bus thinking I’d be late to class, only to pass up said bus in the next one I caught because it broke down. And I made it to class on time! Yep, true story.

Anyway, my point is that this book only fed my fate obsession quite simply in the form of one word: Oliver.

Hadley meets him in the airport, only to find out--as luck would have it--that they’re on the same flight. Throughout the course of the flight, as they get to know and confide in one another, Hadley begins to wonder whether missing her original flight was more than a coincidence but maybe, possibly fate. Then she decides like most of us would, I’m sure, if a guy like Oliver was involved, just to take a chance and make the most of it.

Like many of my favorite reads (Nick and Norah’s Infinite Playlist, One Night that Changes Everything, Where She Went), this story takes place in a matter of hours. Which is genius if you ask me, because I’ve almost never read a book taking place over the course of one night that I did not like.
If you’re looking for a great contemporary, a good, quality teen romance, or just a breath of fresh air when it comes to YA, The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight is the book to go for.

And I'll leave you with my favorite quote (that I feel encompasses the truth and simplicity of maintaining long distance relationships--whether with a parent, friend, significant other, etc.--perfectly):

"...Hadley realizes that even though everything else is different, even though there's still an ocean between them, nothing really important has changed at all... The rest is just geography." -pg. 215

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