It’s been awhile since I’ve read a five-star-worthy romance!! I picked The Love Hypothesis up at the Innisfree Bookshop the other day (last month, by the time you read this…) and the very next night I started it, and then accidentally finished it at 3am. Needless to say, I was home alone that weekend, because you can spit on one end of my apartment and hit the other wall – so leaving that many lights on until the witching hour is super unusual in this house. Because, you know…sleep.
To convince her best friend that she’s over a guy she dated for .2 seconds, Olive kisses the very first man she sees…who just happens to be biology professor Adam Carlsen. Professional ahole. Surprisingly cute.
When things spiral out of control, Olive and Adam must embark on a fake relationship: for Olive to preserve her best friend’s delicate new relationship with the guy Olive is over, and for Adam to convince Stanford he’s not at risk of leaving the university to unfreeze his grant funds. And so, the most comical laundry list of uncomfortable fake dating things ensues: in public.
This book actually had me laughing out loud right beside my cringing. This one is just an absolute zinger. I wish I had picked it up sooner. As I read I couldn’t help but chuckle at just how many tropes and stereotypical moments Hazelwood covered. Literally every cringey, hilarious fake relationship thing you can think of, just written out in every chapter. Hysterical.
The cover of my copy reads “Contemporary romance’s unicorn: the elusive marriage of deeply brainy and delightfully escapist.” (Christina Lauren’s sweet words of recommendation). This could not be more true, and this is the romance novel I totally gravitate towards. The humor and wit written on another level altogether really reminded me of You Deserve Each Other or Get a Life, Chloe Brown. Both of which I also gave five stars. All three now come highly recommended by me.
Olive is the epitome of the strong female heroine. In a graduate program? In a STEM field?? Taking care of her friends, beloved by all??? I love that Olive not only feels genuine but that she’s a gals’ gal, a badass with a mission. Her mission is most certainly not compromised by a man. He’s merely an added addition. That’s what I love about that smart, feminist contemporary romance: there’s far more happening than a woman’s love life, and we not only acknowledge that, but cheer them on when they succeed in the other aspects of their lives.
I feel like this is a great opportunity to plug the very thought provoking article I read a couple months ago about contemporary romance books getting really YA-looking covers as of late. It’s been going on for a while now, but I think part of what kept me from picking this amazing book up in the first place is just how young this cover looks! Don’t get me wrong, the art is very cute. There’s nothing wrong with it at all, except that this book is not for teenagers. The recent trend in illustrated, more juvenile looking covers in romance books is drawing additional readership, but also points to some major issues with sexism and what’s considered valuable reading, according to the article. I really encourage you to read that article and ponder it! I’m curious to hear your thoughts, and whether you’re one of the readers who helped increase romance sales by over 31% this last year as a result.
Please, please read The Love Hypothesis!! I’m obsessed. Can’t wait to hear what you think of it!
Have an absolutely wonderful week, friends. Pray for me and the sleep I lost bringing you this review. Send coffee. ❤
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