Love and Other
by Shannon Lee Alexander
Published: October 7th 2014
Publisher: Entangled: Teen
Charlie Hanson has a clear vision of his future. A senior at Brighton School of Mathematics and Science, he knows he’ll graduate, go to MIT, and inevitably discover solutions to the universe’s greatest unanswered questions. He’s that smart. But Charlie’s future blurs the moment he reaches out to touch the tattoo on a beautiful girl’s neck.
The future has never seemed very kind to Charlotte Finch, so she’s counting on the present. She’s not impressed by the strange boy at the donut shop—until she learns he’s a student at Brighton where her sister has just taken a job as the English teacher. With her encouragement, Charlie orchestrates the most effective prank campaign in Brighton history. But, in doing so, he puts his own future in jeopardy.
By the time he learns she's ill—and that the pranks were a way to distract Ms. Finch from Charlotte’s illness—Charlotte’s gravitational pull is too great to overcome. Soon he must choose between the familiar formulas he’s always relied on or the girl he’s falling for (at far more than 32 feet per second squared).
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*MAY CONTAIN SOME SPOILERS*
At first I was a little hesitant whether I wanted to read the book or not. It was compared to The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight, and you remember what happened with that. Not my favorite book, though I didn't hate it either. The main problem was I thought it would be about one thing, but as it turned out, it was about completely another thing!
Well, the same thing happened here, kind of. I expected the focus would be on Charlie and how he's a complete geek and completely fells for this girl, who is ill. It was a little bit like that, but something was missing.
Everything was just too.. mild. For example the synopsis describes Charlie's prank "the most effective prank campaign in Brighton history". It would be a completely different thing if Charlie pranked Charlotte's sister for the right reasons (like, for having fun etc.) but to take her attention off Charlotte? Really didn't get that.
And the whole pranking thing felt just a little awkward over all. As in this is actually funny haha vs. I'm trying to act as if this is funny.
I was also having hard time with their whole romance, cause I didn't really feel the vibe. Maybe there was some chemistry, but again I felt like things were really mild.
This was probably why I had no urge to finish this book. I usually read a little before going to bed and halfway through the book began checking the page numbers. Cause I felt like I had been reading this book for weeks and I was convinced I was nearly finished. As it turned out, I wasn't even halfway through which usually means it's way too slow-paced for me.
So overall, I loved the idea of this book, but as it turned out, ended up just liking it.
Shannon Lee Alexander is a wife and mother (of two kids and one yellow terrier named Harriet Potter).
She is passionate about coffee, books, and cancer research. Math makes her break out in a sweat.
Love and Other Unknown Variables is her debut novel. She currently lives in Indianapolis with her family.
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