I can’t say exactly what I was expecting from my first Ali Hazelwood book. Her romances are so beloved, and I love that they feature amazing STEM women being smart and getting the guy. And quirky. My goodness were all the ladies in this book the quirkiest things around. I didn’t read “Love Hypothesis” because the Reylo vibes aren’t my jam (but you all do you, I support it) but even so, I feel like a lot of “Love on the Brain” and “Love Hypothesis” were the same? It’s probably just the authors style, and if that’s the case, if all her books feature these things, I may be out.
We get a first person POV of Bee, a brilliant neuroscientist with a heaping dose of relationship baggage thanks to her awful ex-fiancé. First POV can be… fine but often the book bounced from getting the story from Bee’s perspective, and her telling us the story like this was a diary entry. It was weird. But it went toward the quirkiness. The women seem to be over endowed with the quirks more than the men in this book, which, ok I guess, but after a while the novelty wore off a bit. It was cute, sure, but also very cringe at times and that got hard to reconcile for me. Plus, the book IS NOT enemies to lovers despite Bee claiming she’s working with her nemesis. It never was. I’m not going to say more because of spoilers. A lot of the characters were also straight rips from Legally Blonde, some situations were taken right from You’ve Got Mail, and you get another healthy dose of small x tall vibes where Levi is just MASSIVE in all things, more so because Bee is just the tiniest thing to ever exist (and don’t worry, she’s the first to brag about fitting into her clothes from middle school still). Personally, that’s not my thing, so your mileage will vary if you like that kind of dynamic in a romance.
I honestly was expecting more from the spice in this book as well, but that may be because I don’t read a ton of trad contemporary romance books anymore. And while it may sound like I hated “Love on the Brain”, I didn’t. It was brain candy and even though the characters are all smart scientists and engineers, you can’t think too hard about this book, or the Scooby-Doo style ending is going to annoy the hell out of you. Levi and Bee’s banter was super cute, and I loved the message the author had about the GRE’s, plus she really does capture what it’s like for a woman to be an expert in a male dominated field. I just wasn’t totally wowed the way I was expecting from “Love on the Brain”, hence the 3.5 stars. Unless Hazelwood’s romances start to vary more drastically in her contemporary books, I think I’ll skip the rest. It’s cute, just not really my thing, though I am still glad I read this!
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